Ipswich Town fan Russell Claydon previews the East Anglian Derby

editorial image

It wouldn’t quite spark ‘top of the league, at Carrot Road’ chants with an away win in the East Anglian derby on Sunday (2.05pm), but it would certainly feel as good as going top.

In other campaigns, this could have been the be-all-and-end-all for us. But not this time.

Victory over our divisional nearest and least dearest could also not only see us kick those Canaries off their perch and out of the top six, but move us into second place.

And going up without the need for an extended season has to be our aim at this stage.

Alarm bells were ringing after a failure to break down a stubborn Reading side on Saturday who, with the squad they have, are under performing in the table.

But that 1-0 loss seems a mile away as we ride into Norfolk (on board our tractors, naturally) on the back of Tuesday’s 4-2 morale-boosting win over Birmingham City.

That we let them back into it twice with soft goals is a worry, but if Freddie Sears can reproduce his lethal display on Sunday, we should get away with a Joe Royle approach of out-scoring them.

Our non-League starlet Tyrone Mings was well overdue a goal, which was why I backed him at 25/1 (okay, it was only 50p!).

But now he has got off the mark, and from a corner, he has to be given licence to get in the box at Carrow Road.

It was only 1-0 back in August, but the gulf in class made it seem much more. I don’t expect the same to be true on Sunday though.

Norwich have a stronger squad than us on paper, I admit, but we have pockets of that quality, combined with a team ethic they will have to bust a gut to beat.

And can they out-sing 2,000 of us? I doubt it.

Injury worries

Ipswich are sweating on the fitness of both David McGoldrick (thigh) and Cole Skuse (back) for Sunday, along with midfielder duo Darren Ambrose and Stephen Hunt (both hamstrings).

Luke Hyam (knee) is more long term, while Noel Hunt (knee) faces a 12-week lay-off.