Ipswich Town.svg

Who are Ipswich?

By any measure, Ipswich Town are one of the biggest clubs ever to  come to The New Lawn.  Average home gates last season were over 21,000, they have the biggest stadium in East Anglia (Portman Road is an all-seater stadium for over 30,000 people), and they already have more than 16,000 season tickets sold for this season.  The 2 clubs have never met before.

Ipswich finished last season in 11th place in League 1, 13 points off the play-off places.  In 2019 Ipswich’s 63 year run in the top 2 divisions of the EFL came to an end when they were relegated to League 1.  In their 3 seasons in League 1 they have finished 11th, 9th, then 11th again.  Their home and away form and their goalscoring were both just above average last season.  Ipswich boasted a mean defence – well above average in terms of goals conceded.

Who to look out for?

Squads are still settling down at this stage of the season but joint top scorer last season, Wes Burns, will be on the wing for Ipswich.  Burns, who wears number 7, scored 12 goals in his 31 starts last season.    FGR fans with long memories may recall Wes Burns when he came on loan to the New Lawn in the 2012/13 season.  He made 6 appearances, scoring once.  The welsh midfielder was named Ipswich’s player of the season last season.

His strike partner, Macauley Bonne, who also netted 12 times last season, has moved back to QPR after a loan spell at his boyhood club.

Wes Burns, one of Ipswich’s threats

Rovers connections

James Norwood was released by Ipswich this summer.  Below, in his FGR days.

James Norwood was on loan for part of a season, then played at FGR for 4 full seasons between 2010 and 2015.  He moved on to Tranmere Rovers for 4 seasons before spending 3 seasons at Ipswich.  He was released by Ipswich this summer.  As a free agent, he has attracted interest from Bristol Rovers and Oxford Utd.  Now 31, Norwood is an instinctive goalscorer – 50 league goals for FGR and 82 league goals for Tranmere were followed by 26 league goals in his 3 seasons at Ipswich.

At a similar time, Kieffer Moore appeared for Rovers for 2 seasons (2015 – 17) before making a move to Ipswich for a couple of seasons.  After 11 starts for Ipswich and no goals scored, Kieffer had failed to make an impact.  Subsequent moves to Barnsley, Wigan, Cardiff, and now Bournemouth will see Kieffer in a Premier League squad this season, as well as being a key part of the Welsh national team that will play in Qatar later in the year.  Congratulations to Kieffer!

Kieffer Moore in Welsh colours

Club History

Ipswich’s achievements as a club include winning League 1 (before it became the Premier League) in 1962 and finishing runners up in 1981 and in 1982.  In 1981 they also won the UEFA Cup.  They won the FA Cup in 1978 with a 1-0 victory over Arsenal.  Quite a pedigree!

The club have been known as the Tractor Boys since the 1970’s.  How this came about isn’t very clear but it’s a nod to the importance of agriculture in this part of Suffolk and may have been the result of taunting from rival fans that Ipswich supporters have adopted with some enthusiasm!  They are also known as The Blues or Town.

By far, Ipswich’s most famous fan at the moment is Ed Sheeran, who has sponsored the Ipswich shirts for a couple of seasons.  As part of the sponsorship Ed is entitled to step out at Portman Road as the club mascot for a match.  ‘Bluey’ is a giant horse, a Suffolk Punch, and Ed could see himself in the costume, apparently!

Ipswich’s mascot, Bluey

Shirt sponsor, Ed Sheeran