|The Need For a Great Summer at Ipswich|
Written by BaltachaFanClub on Wednesday, 26th Apr 2017 09:51
Let's be honest, this season has been one to forget for us Ipswich fans.
Many would profess to a claim on the much mentioned 'season ended when Murphy left' pearl of wisdom, and indeed to a degree they were right, no natural replacement purchased, and the remaining attackers in an array of forms, and fitness.
David McGoldrick having his usual fitness issues all season, Freddie Sears being out of form/position, Brett Pitman being , well... we shall get to him in a bit.
The bright light of signing Tom Lawrence has been one of few highlights sadly, and with our commanders telling us constantly that we can’t keep him, it feels like being toddlers in Toys R Us, being allowed to look at the big box of Lego, but not buying it (younger fans think Playstations and similar).
As I sat at Rotherham, for reasons we won’t go into in my suit and tie and amongst the home crowd, I began to ponder the future of Ipswich Town and the current squad, and whilst a particularly blunt local yelled, “Go on ya ******* get back on t’tractors and **** ***” (yes the locals really did put extra “T” on everything), I wondered what we can expect of the current Tractor Boys and their own futures, especially as it has been mentioned more than once that over half our playing staff have weeks left on their deals.
Mick McCarthy may well be with us on August's first weekend, but if that's the case he needs quite the summer if he is to have a good season, and win the support back to his side. And so, here is my dissection of our 40 or so players, and where I see them in the future.
We already know the future of some has been decided, Giles Coke, Leon Best and Jonathan Douglas all being told they are free to leave. Although I have no time for the first two, I did always feel that Douglas became an easy scapegoat, and I wish him well in his future endeavours.
I also expect the usual fringe fall out, several of the youngsters out of contract will probably pack up and depart as will I am sure the loaned (as Mick so often put it) “bodies” who have sat in the dugouts and also consumed the physio's time. So goodbye Jonny Williams (we hardly saw thee) and probably Toumani Diagouraga, who began so positively but has just become what he was supposedly replacing, 'Dougie'.
Dominic Samuel and Emyr Huws I am less certain about, to me it feels like they are done deals. Huws especially can’t wait to tell every microphone how much he wants to be here, Samuel too will possibly be without club if Reading extend their season and succeed. I like both, but feel if we sign Samuel McCarthy will bill it as a marquee signing as a fee will have changed hands. As for Lawrence, we know.
Now, the core, the three keepers Bart, Gerks and Michael Crowe, I think we have been set up to lose Bart with the recent talk, I hope not but it reads that way. I have no reason to think the others will move if that is the case, indeed Dean Gerken's new deal suggests that he is either an unambitious man and willing to bench warm or he has inside knowledge.
The defence will almost certainly see the departure of former Player of the Year Christophe Berra, who has been a shadow of his previous colossus, and “Good to have about the place”, as McCarthy would say, Steven Taylor has to prove he is worth a deal.
Tommy Smith is a stayer and unless something daft happens I expect him and Adam Webster to be our regulars. The Luke Chambers contract saga is worse than an Eastenders storyline but it in itself seems to suggest he is going to be let go, shame if so.
You can expect to see Josh Emmanuel, Myles Kenlock and Jonas Knudsen all here, and probably Jordan Spence too, but 'Diggers' must be fringe enough to trim?
The midfield general that is Cole Skuse is often vilified, but will be here, and I see no reason why not, without him at Rotherham we looked muddled. He may not score screamers but he tackles and blocks, works hard and controls us.
I do however fear for the future of three quite popular members of the squad. Luke Hyam seems to be destined for Colchester, Teddy Bishop for an Instagram modelling contract and fans' favourite Kevin Bru seems, well... asleep.
The bright spark that is Dozzell Jr looks likely to capitalise on the demise of these three, as for Adam McDonnell I don’t know but the boy Kundai Benyu must be in the thoughts. Wing-wise Grant Ward and Danny Rowe could both be entertainment maestros in the new term.
Big Kieffer Moore is an ace in the deck, but as yet we don’t know if we are playing aces high or low, he is both sides of the coin with a fanbase unsure how to deal with a Groot-proportioned target man, who seems to throw in all variations of performances. He could be a £20,000 gem, but he could be Sam Parkin too.
Sears and McGoldrick will both be of interest to suitors, but I can’t see either being moved on without an offer to make your eyes bulge, neither has had a season to make you sit up and pay attention.
As for Pitman, after this weekend I can only imagine he is wanting out, I have seen growbags more lively, and he has developed an attitude which can be spotted by the most short-sighted of spectators, calling his own team mates 'D********' loud enough to be heard over 14,000 ahem sorry 16,000 sold tickets can only escalate when the crowd has 4,000 less noises in it.
I would not care if we failed to spend money. As it's probably going to be another summer without much of a budget, we are going to go for frees and loans, Danny Ward's hamstring possibly preventing his signature early doors. But we are going to have gaps to fill all over the park and with no finances flowing it may be a new 'young' Ipswich we see in August, the likes of Tristan Nydam, Ben Morris, Joe Robinson and Corrie Ndaba getting a chance to make the step up.
Like I said though, if that is the case I would not care if we don’t spend, but that's not for everyone, I just wish the common fan realised that not every club is Barcelona, not every player can be Ronaldo and not every result is like it panned out on Fifa the night before.
For the record though, if I was lucky enough to be controlling me beloved Ipswich, and I was asked where to shop, I do believe I know where a few gems are hidden. As a follower of non league I would happily point to a couple of players at my second team Tranmere. Andy Mangan is handy, Ben Tollitt too, James Wallace promised much in the same team as Max Power a few years ago as well. The latter would also do a job if we could prise him from Wigan.
I may also ask Rotherham about Will Vaulks too as he reminds me of a young Mick Stockwell in his versatility, having played in six different roles for the Millers this term.
In short I guess what I am saying is, keep the faith, we are Ipswich fans because we belong here, it’s easy to support Chelsea, it takes pride, passion, belief and patience to support your real local team.
Sorry for rambling, see you all at both home and away fixtures next year.
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