Wright's warning to expectant fans

DAVID Wright has warned expectant Ipswich Town fans that the Coca-Cola Championship will be tougher to get out of this season.

Elvin King

DAVID Wright has warned expectant Ipswich Town fans that the Coca-Cola Championship will be tougher to get out of this season.

“It is now back to what it should be,” said Wright, who suffered rib damage in last Tuesday's 2-1 defeat at Charlton.

“When I came to Portman Road in January 2007 the standard was as low as it has been.

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“It has gradually increased each year since, and in 2009/10 will be a very difficult division to gain promotion from.

“There are a host of teams to look out for this term with Middlesbrough, Newcastle, West Brom, Reading, Sheffield United, Preston and ourselves standing out.

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“We fell short in the last two seasons, and must ensure that it does not happen again.”

Wright is confident that under the management of Roy Keane, the Blues will be good enough to reach the Premier League.

Keane's volatile nature as a player led to some questioning whether his managerial style might prove intimating to some of his Town playing staff.

The experienced Wright, who has played under a number of diverse managers in his career, was quick to refute this saying: “The manager quickly gained the respect of the players.

“And there is a desire to play for him.

“You know where you stand and he has had us working hard from day one back.

“We already had good coaches here and this has been enhanced by the staff the manager has brought in.”

Talking about the changes since Jim Magilton was replaced as manager, Wright revealed: “The new manager has altered a lot of things, but in a subtle way.

“His professionalism has shone through with what we put into our bodies through food and drink being emphasised.”

Wright says that Friday night's game against Spanish opposition Real Valladolid was a stiff pre-season test and one that should have whetted the appetite of Town fans for the league campaign that starts at Coventry on Sunday.

“We have had a good mix,” added Wright, who suffered swelling to two ribs and was unable to breath properly after taking a body blow at the Valley.

“Against Southend and Colchester United we did well, showing patience while we probed and found our shape before taking the chances that came our way.

“Gaining fitness and staying away from injuries are important at this stage, and so is gaining a winning mentality, which we hope to enjoy tonight against a quality side.”

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