‘Time for a new Town cup here’ - Osborne

ROGER Osborne today looked ahead to tomorrow night’s Carling Cup semi-final, second leg at Arsenal and said it’s time to create another Ipswich Town hero.

Osborne earned legendary status at Portman Road when he scored the only goal in Town’s 1978 FA Cup victory over the Gunners at Wembley Stadium.

The local boy made good is happy to hand over the mantle to one of the current Ipswich players if they can capitalise on their 1-0 first leg advantage at the Emirates and go on and beat either Birmingham City or West Ham in the final at Wembley on Sunday February 27.

“I’d love a new hero to emerge and score an Ipswich winner at Wembley,” said Osborne.

“It’ll be a magnificent night if Ipswich go through tomorrow – as much for supporters as for the players.

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“Fans still look back through the years to 1978 and talk about that day.

“It would be wonderful to have a cup win at Wembley again and give them something else to cheer.”

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Otley-raised Osborne, who is manager of Rushmere Sports Club, knows that his former club will be underdogs against a Premier League Arsenal side that is still in line to win four trophies this season.

“Every team has a chance in cup games,” added Osborne. “And Ipswich have to go into the game thinking they can go through.

“But Arsenal have some awesome players and if they play well it will be very difficult for Ipswich.

“When you can bring on perhaps Robin van Persie or Cesc Fabregas is shows how strong you are, and can be very annoying.

“Ipswich set their stall out to stop Arsenal playing in the first leg. It worked well and they must plan to do that again.

“Compared to when we played Arsenal in 1978 there is a quite a big gap between the teams now.

“But if someone takes a chance when it comes it could be a night to remember. I hope so.”

Looking at Town’s current Championship position that was improved by a move up to 18th place with Saturday’s thrilling 3-2 home win over Doncaster Rovers, Osborne added:

“It’s been rough, particularly over the last two or three years.

“The club has lost its way a bit and the team has to go back to working hard and show more effort on the park.”

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