Norwich City supporters have issued a rallying cry in defence of Ipswich Town manager Paul Jewell. The Tractor Boys are struggling in the Championship this season, currently sitting 20th in the table outside the relegation places on goal difference having lost 7 (seven) games in a row – triggering a full-blown crisis in one of England’s otherwise quieter provincial towns. Jewell’s side are only 20 points off the automatic promotion places however, and the former Sheffield Wednesday, Wigan Athletic and Derby County boss believes he has been guilty of trying to achieve too much too quickly at Portman Road. Speak to BBC Radio Suffolk, Jewell said:
“We’re trying to build for the future, not just this season. I think one of the mistakes I made was (to) try to cram everything into one year. Longevity is the answer. “You need to get players who will be here in three of four years and get them settled.”
Jewell’s forays into the transfer market for mega-rich Town in the summer certainly seem to back up those claims. He brought in no fewer than thirteen players in total including Richard Wright (34), Ibrahima Sonko (30), Jimmy Bullard (33), Lee Bowyer (34), Ivar Ingimarsson (34) and Nathan Ellington (30) on permanent deals – all of whom were, incredibly given their lofty status on Championship Manager 2005, free agents. Certain sections of Town’s usually vociferous support are calling for a change at the top, but have been urged not to over-react by their big-City rivals, who are enjoying life in the Premier League. Michael Dilley, editor of the independent Vital Norwich site, called for patience.
“It’s easy to look at recent mediocre results and the apparent lack of direction and leadership from the very top and feel disheartened, but I would urge all Tractor Boys to stick by Paul and his team, much like we did with Glenn Roeder a few years ago during our march to League One. “Supporters are too quick to turn on managers these days, and it doesn’t help when they start fighting amongst themselves. I saw footage of a Town fan a few weeks ago hurling a missile at the supporter sitting next to him, and if he had a stronger arm it would have been very dangerous indeed – it only dropped a few metres short of its target.
Jack Pippin, of the award-deserving The Future’s Bleak, added:
“You don’t become a bad manager over night, no matter how long you spend across the border.”
Commenting on Twitter, Klobo15 echoed the sentiments of most City supporters:
“The squad he is building looks like they could really go places…”