By anybody’s standards, this has been a poor start to the new campaign but Town are a work in progress and progress is finally being made. However, one swallow does not make a summer and we have to hope that the Blues fabulous win away at Swansea, is the start of a sea change in our fortunes.
To throw in another cliche whilst I am at it, they say that fortune favours the brave and whatever people may think about new boss Paul Hurst there is little doubting his braveness throughout. He has stuck to his guns and not been influenced by outside forces and he has a formula that he firmly believes in. If, for example, this long run without a win had afflicted Mick McCarthy in the same way, we all know who would be to blame for it and it certainly would not be him!
Part of the reason supporters got on his back so much was that he was a very bad loser and the finger of blame was always directed towards disenchanted fans who dared to speak their mind. Roy Keane, of course, went on an even longer stretch without a win but his brittle disposition meant that nobody really noticed too much anyway. That was the way he was.
Now in the case of Paul Hurst, he has remained dignified throughout this ordeal and it is to his credit that he has not resorted to a liturgy of foul-mouthed language in an attempt to succumb people into submission. He has remained a real gent throughout, and I could not be more delighted that he has weathered the storm so far in such an admirable manner.
We are, however, still in heavy waters and those dark clouds still linger and won’t leave us until we have steered well clear of the relegation zone. This will inevitably take some time but we are slowly but surely heading in the right direction and playing attractive football in the process.
What Paul needs most of all now is more of those victories and I am hopeful that another might come our way at home to Queens Park Rangers. We are still to win at Portman Road in six attempts and it would be fitting if we were to get back to back victories after so long.
Freddie Sears seems almost certain to start the next one and I have a feeling he is finding his form at just the right time! Playing down the middle has always been his best position and if Hurst perseveres with him as a central striker, I am confident that both Freddie and Ipswich Town, will reap the rewards.
F.W. – editor of Vital Ipswich