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Italian Branch Recreate Early Town Team Photo
Friday, 3rd Mar 2017 18:23

Members of the Italian Branch of the ITFC Supporters Club staged a heritage event at Ipswich School this afternoon where they recreated a team photo from 1885.

What was then known as Ipswich Association Football Club was started by old boys from the school with most of the players in the early days having been former pupils.

Wearing specially designed replica shirts for the occasion, members of the Italian Branch were joined by one or two locals, including TWTD’s Phil Ham and local politician and Ipswich School teacher Alasdair Ross, to recreate one of the earliest team photos (below).

The event was the idea of Italian Branch chairman Simone Longo, who explained: “I’m fascinated by the study of all football clubs, in particular the team that I support.

“So I investigated Ipswich Town’s foundation and two years ago I went to Broomhill Park where they used to play and to the Inkerman pub which was the changing room at that time. This is is the first time I’ve been to Ipswich School.”

He added: “The design of the shirts comes from pictures I have seen. One of my friends is a tailor and he made replicas of the shirts in the photographs.

“It was easy to realise them because it was a classic shirt. The crests on each shirt aren’t the same as they were embroidered by hand.”

Simone and the other Italian fans were given a tour of the school and visited its archive where they learned about its history and its relationship to the club before playing a game against some of the school’s current pupils, who ran out 3-2 winners.

The Italian Branch, which is now 10 years old, is based in Milan and has around 50 members.

Simone outlines how his support of the club developed: “First because my big brother Claudio, who is 15 years older than me, he remembered the Bobby Robson era very well.

“After that, in 2001 I went to watch Ipswich at the San Siro in the UEFA Cup match against Inter and from that moment I’ve supported Ipswich.”

The Italian Branch, who will be in the FanZone before tomorrow’s game against Brentford, are encouraging other fans to join them by wearing retro shirts to the match.

Danny Baker Live! Good Time Charlie's Back. Ipswich Regent Theatre, Ipswich, Thursday 10th May 2018 at 19:30. Get your tickets before they sell out.

Photo: Action Images

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Sospiri added 19:46 - Mar 3
Isn't it crazy that people from all over the world are so passionate about our club? And awesome too.

osborne added 20:19 - Mar 3
Seems a bit crazy these days, but during those Robson years we really were phenomenal and a fairy story that ran and ran. Several years ago I was in Malaysia and went in a really rural bar on a palm oil plantation, full of plantation workers having a beer. When they heard that I was from Ipswich I was an instant celebrity. They all knew so much about Ipswich it was amazing. Not only did they know all the names of the players under Robson they knew where they were signed from, where they moved to, and all sorts of trivia about town. This went on for hours. They seemed as thrilled to meet an Ipswich supporter as we would feel winning at Wembley. As you say - awesome!

floridablue added 20:56 - Mar 3
Great picture, well done the Italian Branch and i was there in Milan, my last away game following Town since my first away in the FA Cup 67 against Man City at their old Maine Rd Stadium

David added 23:18 - Mar 3
So which are Ham and Ross?

jonnysuave added 08:30 - Mar 4
There's a great picture of Ipswich from back when we won the Div 3 South champions in 1950's that I saw in a When Saturday Comes photo book. They are in after match baths (no nudity you will be pleased to hear) mainly brylcreemed, half of them smoking, with stout and tea to help them celebrate promotion. I'll try and dig it up.

Up the Italian branch for a creative and excellent support of the team.

MVBlue added 08:36 - Mar 4
Just a brilliant story. To think some Italian fans were converted by our 2001 uefa run.

Flip added 09:49 - Mar 4
I'm in this photo, second from the right on the back row, also a member of the ITFC Italian Branch despite being English, was a fantastic day yesterday and replicating the first ever team photo was amazing, great bunch of lads and very passionate about our club

oldegold added 13:07 - Mar 4
What a great group of lads and compliments to Simone,Claudio,Davide,Ennio and Michael for making it happen..very enjoyable day at Ipswich School and the photo was a real treat.These guys are the real deal and fervent in their support for our wonderful team and the weekend with them is always memorable.
Very enjoyable evening too at the Dove Inn and thanks to Liz for making it happen...lots of mirth and laughter !

coolcat added 23:47 - Mar 4
I thought it was very interesting. I was in the fanzone today reading about the history of the club and its humble beginnings. I saw both the original photo and the one recreated by the Italian Ipswich supporters group. A lot of interesting work done by the ITFC Supporters group in collecting this information.

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