Leadbitter Looking Forward to Return to Town
Friday, 19th Dec 2014 09:44
Former Blues skipper Grant Leadbitter is looking forward to returning to Portman Road with his new club Middlesbrough on Saturday.
The 28-year-old made 120 starts and six sub appearances for the Blues between 2009 and 2012, scoring 14 goals, before moving on to Boro on a free transfer. Both of his previous games back at Town for the Teessiders have ended in defeat, 3-1 last season and 4-0 the year before.
Now Middlesbrough's captain, the former England U21 international, who played under Town boss Mick McCarthy early in his Sunderland days, has scored 10 times already this season, six from the penalty spot.
“I’m looking forward to going back to Ipswich,” Leadbitter told the Middlesbrough Gazette.
“They are a good club, a big club, and I had some good times there. We know it is going to be a very difficult game for us.
“Mick McCarthy has done a very good job down there but we’ll go there full of confidence and looking to get another good result.
“You know what you’re going to get from one of Mick’s sides, and we know it’s going to be tough. But let’s concentrate on ourselves and hopefully come away with something.”
While Town have lost just one in 17, Boro have lost one in their last 16 with both sides unbeaten in their last eight. The second-placed Teessiders go into Saturday’s match having beaten then-leaders Derby 2-0 last week.
Despite their good form, Leadbitter, who cost the Blues £2.65 million when he was signed from Sunderland during Roy Keane's time at Portman Road, says there’s no complacency in the squad.
“This league is relentless and I can tell you that no one in the dressing room is getting carried away with what we’ve done up to now. We have nothing yet,” he added.
“Yes, we’ve been here before up near the top. But we’re not even at Christmas now. We’re not even halfway yet. We have to keep going and take each game as it comes.
“So it doesn’t matter that we beat Derby. This week has been all about preparing carefully and working hard leading up to the Ipswich game.
“We know it’s not going to be easy there. But hopefully we’ll come away with something.”
Photo: Action Images
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