Chambers: I Haven’t Enjoyed My Football This Much For a While
Tuesday, 24th Sep 2019 20:53
Luke Chambers admits he is enjoying a change of scenery following relegation, even if he is determined that the Blues’ spell in League One lasts just the one season.
As much as he wants to return to the second tier of English football, Chambers went into the current campaign with a fresh desire, to the point where he insisted: “I think I’m more competitive than ever but I wouldn’t say that after playing in the Championship for the last 11 or 12 years I was comfortable.
“You get to play against the same teams and the same players every season, you visit the same grounds every season and you are playing in a team that is going to finish mid-table every season.
“Now I’m refocused because I don’t know anyone in League One very well and I haven’t been to all the League One stadiums.
“I’ve got a new enthusiasm to go out and smash teams. I haven’t enjoyed my football this much for a while and I’ve made no secret of that.
“I’m enjoying being part of this group of players and I’m enjoying seeing them grow in confidence, improve as players and embrace the pressure that comes from being an Ipswich Town player.
“As long as I’m here and I’m captain of this football club every single player in that dressing room will always have to give 100 per cent.
“It won’t just come from the manager, it will come from the dressing room as well. Last year we just fell short because we didn’t have enough quality and weren’t good enough.
“It wasn’t because of a lack of effort or because we had prima donnas here, there and everywhere, who weren’t putting a shift in for the team.
“That’s why the fans have stayed with us – it can be the only reason – and we’re repaying them at the moment.
“They are continuing to enjoy their League One tour so long may the wins and the positive vibe around the place continue. The manager’s got to take massive credit for it and we’re enjoying it as players.”
It’s a case of so far, so good, for Town as they remain unbeaten in the league this season, sit top of the pile and will set a new club record if they can keep a sixth successive league clean sheet when Tranmere Rovers visit Portman Road on Saturday.
No wonder Chambers added: “I don’t think we should change anything we are doing really. We’re not looking stretched and the way we played in our last two games, with the 3-5-2 and the three in midfield, we’ve been able to control games a lot more. Not for 90 minutes, obviously, so that’s something we still need to work on, to nail down a 90-minute performance.
“The way it is in this league, there are teams who are going to get the ball and smash it forward and get people round the ball.
“We’re winning our headers, we’re winning our battles, we’re covering round each other, and we’re playing as a team, not just a group of individuals.
“We’re excited that we could break a record on Saturday but it’s not the be-all and end-all. We want 10 clean sheets in a row and to win 10 games in a row, and we want to be unbeaten for as long as we can.
“That’s the aim – not just a record – but I have to say the whole team have been fantastic defensively.
“We’ve been really strong from set pieces defensively and everyone is doing their job.
“When we have been under the cosh a little bit, against MK Dons and maybe Gillingham a little bit towards the end of the game, everyone has got themselves into good positions and they’re actually embracing the pressure and thinking ‘You know what? You’re not going to beat us, you’re not going to score a goal’.
“Maybe we had a mentality last year where we would get through one corner and then there was another one coming in.
“Maybe we had a negative thing in the back of our heads that we would concede but I don’t see that happening now and as long as we’re not complacent that will continue. I’ve no doubt about that.”
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