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Long-suffering fans deserve a derby win

Ipswich Town columnist Dave Gooderham
Ipswich Town columnist Dave Gooderham

If I could choose two words to describe Ipswich Town fans right now, it would be ‘long suffering’.

Supporters of the longest serving Championship club who have only occasionally briefly flirted with a return to brighter times.

Whatever their opinion or commitment, they deserve so much more.

Those who travel hundreds of miles and spend thousands of pounds following their team.

Those who back the manager and players to the hilt — and those that don’t.

Those who buy a season ticket and then endure, rather than enjoy, 90 minutes.

Even those that buy a ticket and then get wet and cold watching an insipid goalless draw with bottom club Burton.

Whoever you are, however you follow them, Ipswich Town fans deserve so much.

And while there is something sad about our ‘cup final’ being played out between two teams in 12th and 13th respectively, there is nothing sad about Ipswich Town versus Norwich City.

On Sunday, in front of the Sky cameras, we go to Norwich looking for our first derby day win since 2009.

For some, three points over the old enemy would be more precious than ending the season in the top six.

For some, I wonder, it might even start to change a few opinions about Mick McCarthy as the Burton boos are silenced by derby day cheers.

Even putting aside home advantage, I would edge Norwich as favourites. But that will just play to our manager’s strength.

Don’t be surprised to see McCarthy play it safe, to start with a solid midfield four rather than the mercurial Bersant Celina.

Keep it tight, don’t concede early, play on the break. Nick a goal. His mantra.

Take that one chance and end nine years of hurt.

Even the most long-suffering of fans are allowed to dream, aren’t we?

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