Connor Who? The Ipswich Fans' Guide To The Transfer Window

The sale of Connor Wickham has meant that Ipswich Town finally have money to spend on Premier League quality players like Chopra and Bowyer.
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The sale of Connor Wickham has meant that Ipswich Town finally have money to spend on Premier League quality players like Chopra and Bowyer.

It’s the silly season in football – do you love it or hate it?

For Ipswich, the silly season lasts a good 12 months. But the close season is normally a period of abject terror, waiting for the biggest clubs in the country to come in and offer three pence and half a Ginster’s pasty for the hot young talent we’ve spent five years and countless pounds cultivating.

This summer what are you hoping to read every time you check your club news each morning?

Ideally that an in-depth inquiry has discovered Norwich fielded 11 illegal players last year, and as such have not only been stripped of all their points from the 2010/2011 season, they’ve also been told they have to start again in the Blue Square Premier. Failing that, snapping up a few experienced Premier League players who can turn our faltering club into a proper, promotion-chasing force.

What do you inevitably end up reading instead?

Not a lot. In recent years, Ipswich’s transfer news has mostly consisted of us giving away our biggest players, but this year has been a welcome change - Jewell seems like he’s determined to get the club back in the Premier League with some quality signings.

Got much cash in the kitty?

Again, another welcome change for the Tractor Boys. After years spent in administration, Marcus Evans arrived in 2007 to put an end to our financial worries. This transfer season started with a healthy enough kitty, but the sale of Connor Wickham has boosted the club’s moneybags by an initial £8.1m, so we’re sure to see a few more buys before the season starts.

Hulking midfielder? Tricky winger? Big bastard defender? What types of players would you like to sign this summer?

We’ve been short of a decent striker for a while. People forget that as good a prospect as he is, the lad we just sold for pushing £10m actually only scored 13 goals in the last two seasons. But we’ve hopefully addressed that problem with Michael Chopra, who started the pre-season with two goals in 45 minutes in our first friendly. We’ve also been desperate for a tough-tackling midfielder with enough experience to put his foot on the ball when the game’s racing away from us - and Bowyer should plug that gap and chip in with a few well-needed goals as well. And failing that, he’ll certainly liven up Ipswich city centre with a few kebab-shop scraps.

What types of player will you end up signing instead? An U21 Moldovan left back instead of Spanish international forward perhaps?

We’re the journeyman's favourite club. People like the idea of heading here on loan for a little while, grabbing a bit of country air and some organic sausages from the local market before heading back to the big cities to carry on their career. It's my dream that one day during my lifetime, Ipswich will make a 'big name signing.' This will probably only happen if I win the Euro Millions and buy him myself.

Getting rid of Kieron Dyer was one of the high points of Ipswich’s 133-year history. And last year, Jimmy Bullard finally found that a parochial town full of farmers was the one place his haircut wouldn't prevent him from being a hero.

Who wants to leave the club and what’s your attitude towards them?

It’s been on the cards for a while that Connor Wickham has wanted to leave the club and it’s difficult to stand in the way of players good enough to make it in the Premier League. But I think he’s made a mistake leaving so early. This is a player with just 60-odd appearances behind him, heading for one of the world’s best and most competitive leagues. I think he could’ve done with another season or two at Ipswich before moving on. Who knows, maybe he’d be in the Premiership with us by then...

But hey, leaving the warm bosom of Ipswich to head for the big lights has worked wonders for those who went before him - just ask Darren Ambrose or Richard Wright...

Who has been the biggest tosser of this transfer window?

Definitely Liam Gallagher for THAT new Man City kit video. But he’s closely followed by Tevez and Fabregas. I feel for Arsenal fans. It must be really galling to have to pay all that money for a season ticket and then turn up each week to watch a squad who’d much rather be playing for an actual big club, as opposed to one that thinks it is. I can make that sort of joke because I’m an Ipswich fan. It’s the perk of supporting a club whose trophy cabinet is sponsored by Mother Hubbard.

Reckon you’ll be stronger or weaker next season?

At the moment, I reckon our signings have been pretty spot on, and Jewell has shown from the start that he’s a man who understands what it takes to mount a decent title challenge. I still reckon we’re a way off that yet, but we’re looking stronger than last year already.

What has been the best ever bit of business your club did in the transfer window?

Getting rid of Kieron Dyer was one of the high points of Ipswich’s 133-year history. And last year, Jimmy Bullard finally found that a parochial town full of farmers was the one place his haircut wouldn't prevent him from being a hero.

But, for me, Giovanni Dos Santos was worth every penny we paid him. The former Barca man might only have turned it on in dribs and drabs, but when he did he looked incredible. And, let’s not forget, he was the loanee who hammered the final nail into Norwich’s Championship coffin...

And the worst?

We brought Kieron F Dyer (that stands for f*cking, by the way) back on loan. Basically, what happened there was that we paid his wages for a few weeks, let him knock the ball about with little effect for four games, and in the process darkened the good name of our club for eternity. But even that was eclipsed by those words that are still banned within the city walls of Ipswich: Finidi George. *shudder*

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