The new League One football season is just 11 days away, and we can expect a bumper crowd at Portman Road when we confront old adversaries Bolton Wanderers at Portman Road. This is when we have to hit the ground running – no excuses!
Facing The Trotters in our first league encounter might not be the ideal way to kick off a new season, but if we are triumphant, it will stand us in good stead for the season ahead. What we need most of all is a good start and we must take advantage of having home advantage. The Lancastrian club did the double over us last season. Who could forget that devastating 2-5 defeat home defeat on the 11th of September 2021!
That was under former boss Paul Cook, and there has been a lot of water under the bridge since then. Kieran McKenna stepped into his first managerial post and has excelled, that is why the mood here these days is so good. There is a real belief that we can take this league by storm, and if we do not get automatic promotion, we will probably do so via the play-offs but that is too scary to seriously contemplate.
It is essential, in my view, that we get a quick start, and this means victory over the Wanderers to kick off our season in style! A drew it would be acceptable I guess, but ideally, we should be firing on all cylinders from the off, and claiming all three points.
An away trip to Forest green Rovers is our next match, and contrary to what some people might think, this game will not be a walk in the park. Newly promoted sides at this stage in the season always have something to prove, and they will have a spring in their step after winning the 21-22 League Two title! I would happily take a draw there – assuming, of course, that we have beaten Bolton at home! On the 13th of August, MK Dons are our visitors. Last August, we could only draw with them 2-2 at Portman Road, so we will hope to see an improvement here as well. Both of our encounters with them last time ended as draws, so we need to see more points accrued this time around.
I remain cautiously optimistic for the season ahead. Our Club has once again recruited well, and I am excited to see Marcus Harness, Dominic Ball and Freddie Ladapo in the Town team, to name but three. Sadly, Bersant Celina and Macauley Bonne are no longer a part of our squad, but that’s football. We must move on.