Date: 6th January 2015 at 5:10pm
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Assuming that Ipswich Town overcome Southampton and progress to the fourth round of the F.A. Cup they can expect to play another home tie against another Premiership outfit.

First things first though and the blues face a very demanding set of fixtures before then, starting with Derby County this Saturday at home and with Darren Bent returning to the fray we can expect some fire works with another bumper crowd!

The fact that the game is on Sky gives followers of the blues from around the globe a chance to see the progress made under Mick McCarthy and Terry Connor. I want to give a special mention to the former Leeds United striker because under his expert guidance he has transformed the fortunes of Daryl Murphy.

I don’t want to sound like the harbinger of doom and gloom but this is the kind of game I fear the most.

A former striker coming back to haunt us and a Derby side that is full of confidence and bang in form.

Let us hope that our home support will drive us forward because when the place is rocking then Portman Road can be as intimidating as anywhere and at this stage in the season, the blues need all the backing they can get. I would take a point any day of the week.

It is nice to see that Ipswich have followed the example of Southampton and fans will pay a maximum of ten pounds to watch the F.A. Cup 3rd Round replay that I seriously hope will get some television coverage by the time we get there.

The entrance fee should ensure another near capacity crowd and encourage Saints fans to make the journey too!

If Town do get through then they will face another Premier outfit in the next round of the cup and another match at home!

Crystal Palace might not be a star attraction but they will present us with another severe test and it has to enhance our learning curve, given the fact that they are in the Premiership.

The lack of travelling will aid the Town and although I am jumping a little ahead of myself here, I would suspect there would be a big Palace following too and yet another encouraging turn out!

But before all that, we must still focus on the six pointer on Saturday afternoon in the early kick off encounter with Derby.

If we were to win this match, our hopes of an automatic promotion place would be strengthened considerably but after our exploits in the cup we must guard against over confidence.

The season is but half way through and a point would surely do against one of the hot favourites for promotion.

Frank Weston – Editor Vital Ipswich


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