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Luke Chambers Will Be a Town Legend
Written by Pickersblue22 on Friday, 5th Feb 2016 09:27

As one of the greatest leaders in Premier League history announces he is leaving English football a the end of the season, I think it appropriate to pay tribute to our very own Captain Fantastic.

Luke Chambers arrived at Town in July 2012, and I think we can safely say his signing is the best thing Paul Jewell did for our club. He had already been a consistent performer for Northampton and Nottingham Forest and had won promotions at both clubs.

Of course, that first season for him at Town won't be remembered too fondly, as it started horrifically and Mick McCarthy was then rebuilding and playing catch-up for the rest of the term. But there were signs immediately that Chambers' leadership qualities were being recognised. He captained the side in Carlos Edwards' absence against Huddersfield in only his fifth game for Town.

Mick's first game in charge was hugely significant for a number of reasons. Obviously it ended the terrible run we had been on, but it saw the birth of that wonderful, iconic ritual that we now see from Luke every time we win - the Chambo fist-pump. He was so overjoyed and relieved that we had finally won a game that he poured out all his emotion and showed just how much the club truly meant to him.

That moment endeared him to all our fans, and that warmth has grown and grown ever since. His care for the club was shown further when he swore on live TV at the Valley, clearly overcome with emotion at winning such a dramatic and important game.

Chambers epitomises everything Mick wants from his players. He works extremely hard, gives his all in every single game, and just gets on with the job. He has made it abundantly clear that he would rather play in the centre, but that doesn't stop him giving his all at right-back. The team is far more important that individuals, and nowhere is that clearer than with Luke.

I confess to having always been strongly against having him at right-back, as I feel it wastes a part of the pitch we can be effective in, but this season my mind has changed. Luke has grown into the role and has improved significantly from when he first played there. He is very occasionally torn to shreds by pacy left wingers, but more often than not he keeps them in his pocket. He has started to get forward more, and has provided assists as well as arriving late in the box to wreak havoc with his aerial prowess.

I want to paint a picture of what Luke is like on a match day. As he comes out for the warm-up, there is plenty of vigorous clapping to the enthusiastic fans who are in the ground bright and early, and the same when he leaves the pitch at the end. His face in the tunnel is always a picture of focus, determination and hunger.

As he comes out onto the pitch, there is a small clap to his loved ones, and then he strides across the turf with his hand on the hero-worshipping mascot's shoulder. Following the handshakes, he whips up the SBRL with his enthusiastic applause. There is always such an infectious energy about Luke; perhaps sometimes he seems over-psyched, but he just cant help it, as he cares so much about the team doing well.

Assuming we win, there is a bear hug for each and every one of the players and staff as Luke bides his time while the other players give the fans a clap, before he zooms towards the Sir Bobby Robson Stand. The fans oooohhh in anticipation often for minutes. Luke comes forward and explodes into his trademark fist-pump, and with every pump comes a huge cheer from the supporters.

It is hard to exaggerate the importance of this fist-pump. Not only is Luke showing just how much the result means to him, he is establishing an emotional connection with the fans, something that has been sorely lacking at the club for the past several years.

There is a further fist-pump at the other end of the ground, before the manager gets the biggest embrace of everyone, and the two of them disappear down the tunnel together with the job done.

He just sets a magnificent example to our young fans especially about how the game should be played - with your heart on your sleeve, and giving everything for the team and not for yourself. As a leader he is inspirational for the other players, leaving absolutely everything out on the pitch, and never asking anyone to do something he wouldn't do.

It might seem strange to some people that I am lavishing so much praise on just one player, but it is such a great feeling to see someone honestly proud to have the Ipswich Town badge on their chest.

So there you have it, my tribute to our outstanding leader, Luke Chambers. A player who gives everything wherever he plays, and without whom our team would be so much poorer. He is our Captain, Leader, soon-to-be Legend.

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carsey added 09:44 - Feb 5
I have to say I too have had grave reservations about Chambers at full back but he has improved tremendously this season and his attacking efforts are much improved. I still worry about teams with real pace out wide but attacking full backs are always a compromise at any level.
Having a captain who cares and is seen to care is important for all the supporters and whilst I'm not sure of the Legend status he will be remembered in a positive light by the younger supporters whenever his time is up at Town.

hoppy added 09:58 - Feb 5
Certainly has a lot more connection with the fans, and more of a vocal rallying the team than Carlos Edwards had before him. Nice bloke as Carlos was, but seemed to be fairly quiet in the captain role, so Chambers does come across more suited to it, and let's hope for many more fist pumps from him, this season and beyond...

Garv added 10:46 - Feb 5
That was really quite beautiful.

MVBlue added 11:20 - Feb 5
Marvellous read.

N2_Blue added 12:39 - Feb 5
Well said...I'd much rather watch Luke Chambers play at RB, than a more talented player that didn't show any passion or love for the club.

Luke Chambers will go down as one of my favourite ITFC players

Hoppy spot on. Carlos seemed an ok fella, but he could play a whole 90 mins without uttering a word...not what you want from a captain.

essexccc added 14:34 - Feb 5
I fully agree with your comments, particularly the reconnection with the fans, which is so much better than during the Jewell/Keane/Clegg era. The fist pump has certainly helped this and I noted Ryan Fraser and Brett Pitman pointing it out to their ex-Bournemouth colleague Yann Kermogant, after the final whistle on Tuesday.

They watched as if it was a circus act!

Fatcatevans added 16:59 - Feb 5
When's the wedding? Get a grip man. Yes he's good to the crowd and loves his family etc but as a right back he doesn't cut it. Yes he's improved there but that's not difficult as he was poor to begin with. He is still a centre half filling in at right back. You can kiss the badge all you like but the fact is we still need a proper right back. It's not Luke however.

ITFC1985 added 09:46 - Feb 6
A very good read however please do not take what I am going to say the wrong way, I love Luke Chambers passion and pride to pull on his shirt but to say this season he has improved at right back makes me laugh. The amount of goals we concede from his side is scary, his thrown ins are probably worse than Knudsens long aimless balls down the line, a Chambers ball down the line generally goes into touch and he gives the ball away a lot. However talent aside he is a good captain and a good example to young fans that I can agree with however as a player surely you would want to be remembered for your footballing talent and not your ability to do a fist pump?

Penguinblue added 10:58 - Feb 6
Could not disagree more. From where I sit Chambers is a poor footballer, a hopeless right back and a poor captain. He may be enthusiastic but a team needs more qualities than that in its captain.
Chambers is rarely in a position to ball any one else out because he is most frequently at fault for goals conceded. Watch how many teams target our right (their left) usually successfully. What other players think privately I can only imagine.
Yes he embodies MM because he is his pet and plays kick and run hoofball in his style.
Sorry - probably would not even get into my team let alone captain or Town legend.
Fist pump is probably to hide his footballing inadequacies under a cloak of passion.

RegencyBlue added 21:35 - Feb 6
Whatever else Chambers is he is not a right back!

LimitlessBlue added 22:34 - Feb 6
he is not that great, if you watch him.

Pickersblue22 added 08:46 - Feb 7
Thank you for the mostly positive feedback!! To make things clearer, I don't actually think Chambers is good enough to play right-back for us, but there can be no doubt that he has improved a lot there. I am praising his leadership a lot more than his footballing ability.

COYB11 added 11:28 - Feb 7
I think Chambers is one of our most improved players this season. He has got forward much better, has a few goals and assists and I feel has been targeted much less by opposition wingers.
I don't understand how you can criticize someone who is as passionate as Luke about the team and the club. He sets the perfect example to young fans.
I trust that Mick knows what he's doing by having him in the team.
I believe that Chambers is as valuable to the team as our best players such as Freddie Sears.

SpiritOfJohn added 15:35 - Feb 7
Lovely bromance going on with this blog.
Although Chambers is not the best overlapping right-back ITFC have had, he does have more assists than Ryan Fraser this season. Interesting to compare the skipper to Carlos Edwards, a player who had greater ability but was not a great leader.

Portman51 added 19:15 - Feb 7
Sadly it was LC looking on admiringly yet again yesterday as Phillips came in from the left and headed the winner.

Oxford_Blue added 19:57 - Feb 7
Chambers has sinply done a good professional job as Captain - no more, no less. He came here because we offered him the best deal - and like any professional footballer with a short career to think of he took what was on offer just as he would have done the same at Forest if they had offered him a better deal. He has had some good games but equally this season he has been poor at times. I don't see what he has done - and nothing in the article above sets out the case - to make the supporters particularly grateful. If another team came along and offered him more money and better prospects he would leave tomorrow. And I wouldn't blame him. I am sure like other players he has developed a fondness for the club but he has no link with the club or area and is simply a professional footballer doing a professional job.

Eiffel78 added 14:05 - Feb 8
Without doubt, we've had better players both in his current position and his preferred central position. But I agree, as a captain, he's fantastic. No disrespect to any of his predecessors, but I think he's the best we've had for a long time - possibly since Matt Holland in the way he's built a bond with the supporters and gets the fans going. Here's to many more years of his fist pumps at Portman Road!

blue442 added 18:55 - Feb 9
Never going to be a legend nas he is poor and all he does is a fist pump when we win, I could do that

BackTheBlues added 13:49 - Feb 18
Need I add anything... No!

Absolutely spot on and what a well written piece!

Chambers is the equal if not, potentially better, of the captain Matt Holland was - the only thing missing is that promotion to the promised land!

Dissboyitfc added 17:51 - Feb 28
Yes a good captain and leadrer and i love and admire his qualities, but he never will be a RB

ITFC1985 added 16:45 - Mar 7
Best captain since Matt Holland? are we forgetting the Boss Jason De Vos? he was an exceptional captain.
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