Carlos Edwards of Ipswich Town battles with Andros Townsend of Birmingham City during the npower Championship match between Ipswich Town and Birmingham City at Portman Road on April 17, 2012 in Ipswich, England. (Photo by Jamie McDonald/Getty Images)
Ipswich welcome recently relegated Blackburn to Portman Road this weekend with both sides expected to be challenging for promotion this season.
Whatever the allegations thrown at Blackburn owners Venky’s their loyalty to manager Steve Kean cannot be called into question. The motives for that loyalty may, however, be debatable, but a poor start to this season would surely see Kean collecting his P45 before too long.
The manager has been backed handsomely in the transfer market so far this summer with Danny Murphy, Dickson Etuhu, Nuno Gomes and Leon Best among the notable additions to the Rovers squad. Yakubu and Junior Hoilett may have left but the core of a competitive Premier League squad remains and they should be challenging for promotion this season.
Having flirted with the relegation zone around Christmas time Paul Jewell’s side pulled well clear of danger in the final third of last season. The Tractor Boys have a quality squad that should at least be pushing for a play-off place and perhaps Jewell now has the momentum he needs at Portman Road. Ipswich won all four of their notable pre-season games including an impressive 3-1 win over West Ham at the beginning of this month and can come into this season on the front foot.
Coral are unable to split the pair in their Match Odds betting, with both teams priced at odds of 13/8 to pick up the three points. The draw, at odds of 9/4, is where the shrewd money will be going.
The draw @ 9/4 with Coral