Ahmad “Wearside Blue” – ITFC supporter since 1981
London (not many people know that you know!) April 1971 - a fine vintage. Moved
to Sunderland, 1973, a week before the FA cup moved north to the Wear!
often asked question - how the chuff does a “Makem” end up supporting the
and all that…
year was 1981 – the time of THE Royal Wedding. Whilst on holiday with my
parents in East Anglia we house-sitted for friends of my parents who lived in
Ipswich. I stayed in the young sons room which was a shrine to Robson’s team
of the 80s. Photos, programmes the works! I was young, impressionable and just
becoming interested in the great game. A gift that same period of an Ipswich sun
hat was all it took to convince me that Blue and White was a sound choice and
preferable to the hometown Red and White. It was a strange and at times costly
would return to Ipswich on an annual basis for a five or more years and I would
clock up at least one home game a season during this period.
Rave On – John Lyall years…
studying at Madchester between 1989 and 1993 I struck up some great friendships
with other Ipswich locals and traveled extensively around the North West and
back and forth to Ipswich watching the lads do the business. The year of the 2nd
Division Championship was especially memorable and I saw a good number of those
games home and away that year.
the South African Blue Army Alliance was launched here, I was interviewed by a
journalist from BBC Radio Suffolk. Poor bloke must have thought he’d got his
wires crossed – a Wearsider, living in South Africa and who’s blood is blue
– I hope he understood me! I wonder if they ever used the interview.
even been in the EADT! This branch is dead famous and the lads and ladies
amongst the best you’ll ever meet.
Twist in the Tale…
a postscript to this tale, you may find it interesting to note that the “young
son” whose room corrupted me all those years ago turned out to be Chris “The
Boy” Reeler’s cousin - Mark Whitehead. Mark’s family were in SA when and
it was there house we were house sitting (our parents were close friends from
their teaching days in London). Chris and I would only learn of this by a chance
e-mail when Mark was traveling Europe with ITFC in 2001. Chris and I had already
been mates for some four or so years! It’s a small world ladies and gents…
vs ITFC Roker Park 1983
ITFC Match @ FPR
vs Notts Forest – 2-2 draw 1984
match @ FPR
vs Spurs – 2-2 draw 1994
2 Ipswich Town 3 1983 – Roker Park
from the packed Fulwell End surrounded by my fellow Wearsiders, kitted out in
best Ipswich Body Warmer (forgive me, it was the 80’s remember) Flat Cap and
Scarf. No-one could work out why a “local” lad was shouting for the team in
blue. ‘Twas the great team of the 80’s minus only Muhren – D’Avray even
got a run-on as sub!
Sh**te 0 Town 2 1985 – Canaryville
after the stand burned down and just after they had harmed us (grievously on the
pitch and mentally off) in the Milk Cup semis. Goals from the great goalscoring
colossus Butcher and D’Avray secured a magical three points. All watched from
the wrong end after a ticketing mix up but nevertheless laughed myself sick when
Asa Hartford was sent off for being too crap – first time I’d seen that
happen. I was spat on by a man old enough to be my great grandfather for my
efforts – nice people them yellow shirts…
2 Derby 1 1992 – FPR
ARE TOP OF THE LEAGUE!!! WE ARE TOP OF THE LEAGUE – repeat to fade “LET’S
ALL HAVE A DISCO, LET’S ALL HAVE A DISCO LALALALALALALALALALALALA…- repeat
to fade. The Chelsea of their day Blackburn, blew a million points clear at the
top advantage (a point per million spent on players), to allow the lads to surge
to the top of the 2nd Division. The Premiership beckoned, Dozey and
Kiwomya were in a class of their own on the day (and that season) and Neal
Thompson secured a right hand seat next to God, in my humble opinion – best
defensive player of the decade end of story.
0 Ipswich 0 1993 – Anfield
game was appalling but a point is a point at Anfield! If you know football, you
know Anfield and therefore you’ll know why this was a highlight for me. If you
don’t know Anfield, HOW did you find this site?
1 Ipswich 0 2001 – Stadium of Light
result but WHAT a day out at the magnificent Stadium of Light – this also gets
a mention in the worst Live read on for reasons.
Bafana 2 Tunisia 0
CAF Cup Final 1996
Mandela, a passionate (those were the days) national team and 100,000 patriots
packed into FNB. Unforgettable and from a spectacle point of view at least, more
memorable than the World Cup qualification triumph a year later – I saw all
those qualifying games too.
C 6 (1st Division) Ruimsig 1 (Premier League) Cup Quarters – George
at full time. 6-1 within twenty additional minutes – you had to be there I
1 Ipswich 0 1987 – Roker Park
in the Fulwell End AGAIN. Cooper goes off injured, Cranson replaces him in nets.
Sunderland goal is disallowed within seconds of the switch and after that he
proceeds to play a blinder…seconds from time, referee awards spot kick to
hometown team and the rest as they say is history…gutted I was.
4 Ipswich 1 1990 Boundary Park
to and beneath the skin - Terrible ground, terrible plastic pitch, reasonable
manager I seem to recall and top striker in the form of Ian Marshall. Marshall
had scored three before half time and the only highlight was Mich D’Avray
coming on as sub. John Wark scored as I recall.
1 Ipswich 0 2001 – Stadium of Light
was the beginning of the end. Within weeks we would have beaten the Mighty Inter
Milan @ FPR but anyone who witnessed the dawn of the age of the “grab the
money while I can – get me out quick” brigade would have been equally
dismayed – if not disgusted. Sereni, George, Sixto, millionaires every last
one of them, every last one of them a DISGRACE to the shirt. All this in the
name of UEFA glory! Lads like Scowcroft sacrificed for has beens and never could
be’s. Stewart sacrificed for, well for whom exactly? How the chuff did it all
go so wrong. Loved the day and the atmosphere but I won’t forget for either
the good or bad reasons.
team seen live:
Player of ALL Time:
– based on who I personally saw in the blue and white and players who on THEIR
day did the business (hence Reuser’s inclusion) – not what the lads from the
60s/70s want me to say (hence no Beattie or Ray Crawford for that matter!)
Mills, Thompson, Butcher, Stockwell
, Reuser, Muhren, Dyer, Brennan
Sub: D’Avray – for sentimental and patriotic reasons (and to wind up Granite, Wilksey and Richard)