Town need nine more wins to be safe!

DARREN Ferguson, the Preston manager, concentrated the minds of every Ipswich Town supporter when he said that his team needs 10 more wins to be certain of avoiding relegation.

Saturday’s 1-0 win for his team over Roy Keane’s team moved, the Lancashire-based side to within five points of Town.

On this basis Ipswich need nine more wins to get to a ‘safe’ total of 50 points, and with the half-way stage almost reached the chances of Town achieving this in their current mood is a unlikely.

With Ferguson’s father Sir Alex at the ground to witness more managerial misery for his former key midfielder Keane, Preston built on draws in their two previous games to end a run of seven games without a win.

The home players headed off to Dublin for their Christmas party weekend in festive mood while Keane’s men trooped off to their seasonal bash more in need of a bonding session than a knees up.

“It is round about the 50-point mark that gets you safe and that means 10 wins out of 25,” said Ferguson junior.

“It’s a relief to get the win and hopefully, with the two draws coming into the match, it can be a springboard for us. It has been a long time coming and it was a good result.

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“Looking back over the last three games we were 30 seconds away from having three clean sheets and that is definitely the platform for success.

“It was a slow, nervy start, but the second half was better.

“I had a bit of a go at half-time and the players responded to it.”

Match winner Iain Hume’s loan spell from Barnsley has come to an end but Ferguson is hopeful of a permanent move taking place in January.

“We will be trying our hardest,” said Ferguson, who has ‘invested’ wisely in the loan market with Danny Pugh in particular and Ritchie de Laet and Michael Tonge also contributing to Saturday’s win.

“Roy Keane is a big lad and can look after himself.”

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