Ipswich Town supporters have stressed the importance of the upcoming summer transfer window – after their club secured a return to the EFL Championship next season.
The Tractor Boys managed to finish in the League One automatic promotion place – with two games to spare.
Kieran McKenna enjoyed his first full season in charge of Ipswich this year and the former Manchester United assistant manager has led the Suffolk side back to England’s second division after finishing second to Plymouth in League One.
Fans have emphasised the importance of McKenna and Ipswich spending right in the summer after such a successful season – with supporters such as Jamie Chambers described the significance of securing players with Championship experience ahead of next season.
Jamie said: “We need to invest in the right areas over summer, I’d like to see us sign some experience to the dressing room to help the younger players integrate to the higher level.
“Obviously we’re lucky enough to have some superstars in the squad as well, it’ll be important to get George Hirst on a permanent and keep hold of those other stars as well.”
Although they struggled at points in the season, Ipswich were able to string together a run of 19 matches unbeaten in the league towards the end of the season, which was enough to secure promotion to the Championship.
— Sky Bet League One (@SkyBetLeagueOne) May 7, 2023
The Blues finished the season on 98 points and were unfortunate to not clinch the title on the final day of the season, as Plymouth stretched away from the chasing Ipswich with a 3-1 win after an early scare against Port Vale.
This year’s award winners:
- League One Most Assists – Leif Davis
- League One Golden Glove – Christian Walton
- League One Top Goalscorer – Conor Chaplin
— I(P)SWICH TOWN FC (@IpswichTown) May 10, 2023
Despite not lifting a trophy this season, the Blues were able to secure three awards in the league – as full back Leif Davis recorded the most assists and Christian Walton kept the most clean sheets with 23 in the season.
Perhaps most impressive was Conor Chaplin’s golden boot however, and although the top goalscorer trophy will be shared with Peterborough’s prolific Jonson Clark-Harris, Chaplin’s 26 league goals look all the more impressive with a promotion to go with it.
One man who knows all there is to Chaplin’s game is Stuart Watson, who is the chief football writer for the East Anglian Daily times. Stuart has covered Ipswich for over a decade and proudly watched on from the stands as his home club secured promotion to the Championship this season.
“Anyone who ends up with 29 goals in all competitions is going to play a huge part in the team, but its important not to underestimate the importance of Conor Chaplin in this team.
“Kieran McKenna has repurposed Conor more as a number ten in the last 12-18 months and I think his all round game has come on loads – not just his finishing.
“What he does for this club both on and off the pitch is remarkable a big strength of the squad this season has been the unity of the squad and Conor is always at the heart of that.”
What next for the Blues?
After four long years in League One, the Blues will finally make a return to the Championship next season and many fans are already looking forward to their first season back in the second division which will get underway in September.
Jamie was just 16 when Ipswich were last in the Championship and he is looking forward to following the Blues next season across the country – but has warned that the team must be prepared.
He said: “Look, we can take in all these celebrations as much as we want but we have to be serious next season. It’s all well and good getting to the Championship but actually performing there is a whole other story.
“I’ve seen teams go up and just come straight back down because they can’t handle the increase in quality…. I just really hope that isn’t us next season.”
Ipswich will begin their first Championship campaign in four years this September and have already confirmed two league clashes against East Anglia rivals Norwich that will have the fans drooling.