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13 November 2014

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You are in: Suffolk > BBC Radio Suffolk > Features > Seven-a-side

Brenner Woolley in Ipswich Town's commentary box.

Brenner Woolley

Seven-a-side

BBC Suffolk has a new top team of former players who'll be joining the commentary team for all of Ipswich Town's games for the 2009/10 season - and that includes home matches for the first time since 2008!

"The only thing I'm slightly worried about is where the goals are coming from," said John Wark, who joins the BBC Suffolk sports team for a second season. Wark played for the first team in three spells at Portman Road - 1974-1984, 1987-90 and 1991-97.

"I would still hope we can get a couple of more players, but if we don't, we've just got to improve our home form from last season.

"You've still got Connor Wickham, Pablo Counago, Jon Stead, but Jordan [Rhodes, who's gone to Huddersfield] was a natural goalscorer and we've got to look ahead and get the right man to get the goals for us."

John Wark and Kevin Beattie

John Wark and Kevin Beattie

John Wark will be part of BBC Suffolk rotation system for summarisers working alongside Brenner Woolley in the commentary box.

We've only one David Johnson

Also in the team are Kevin Beattie, Alex Mathie, Ray Crawford, Bryan Hamilton, Ian Atkins and new boy David Johnson, who played for Town from 1997-2001 in the last Ipswich team to get promotion to the top flight in 2000.

David Johnson said: "I had a fantastic four years at Ipswich. I was very fortunate that George Burley brought me in when there were experienced players such as Tony Mowbray, Mark Venus, Mickey Stockwell, Geraint Williams and we had some fantastic young players and it was a great blend.

David Johnson, 2000

David Johnson, 2000

"People have got high expectations for 2009, but it hasn't helped with the three big clubs that have come down [Newcastle, Middlesbrough, West Brom] and I think it'll be a tough season for Ipswich.

"There are about 12 teams that I think have got a chance of making the play-offs. Realistically the top two will be from the three that have come down, Sheffield United, Ipswich, Nottingham Forest have been spending money and Jim Magilton's spending his cash at QPR.

"I think it'll probably be the most exciting league in about 10 or 15 years. With these clubs coming down there are still big players in the division.

"In the Premiership, you've got the top four, but in the Championship everyone will have a chance of beating everyone.

"Connor Wickham's coming through, hopefully Jon Stead will start scoring goals in the league. Everyone wants a striker because you're only as good as your strikers. I think Forest have bought six strikers and if Ipswich can buy one then you've got a good chance of promotion."

Alex Mathie (who played for Ipswich 1995-1998) said: "It's going to be tough with Middlesbrough and Newcastle coming down. I know Newcastle are in a bit of disarray, but they'll be there or thereabouts."

Alex Mathie of Ipswich Town, 1995

Alex Mathie, 1995

Alex will be at Portman Road for the Newcastle game on 26 September when there's expected to be a celebration of the life of Sir Bobby Robson.

"It's a very, very sad loss to football and to people in general. I only met him a couple of times when he was doing a few dinners, but he was a remarkable man who breathed enthusiasm for the game."

The Atkins diatribes

Getting the summarising season underway will be Ian Atkins (played for ITFC 1985-1988) as Town travel to Coventry in the League and Shrewsbury in the League Cup in the opening week.

"There's probably about 12 clubs that will have been disappointed not to be in the play-offs last season it was that even. If you look at the division this year, I wouldn't say there were any massive big-hitters in there.

"Newcastle have got the parachute payments, but they've got the financial problems and ownership problems and they may not be the same threat as if they'd been a stable club. You could look at West Brom because they've got stability, but the rest is very, very even.

Ian Atkins (Getty)

Ian Atkins

"Roy is so focused and so determined and he's got terrific standards. He's going to be great for the club because it's yo-yoed a bit over the past 10 years.

"I don't think Jim Magilton can complain [about getting sacked in 2009] because he had £12m to spend and never got them anywhere near the play-offs. Roy's got standards and those standards will go right through the staff.

"Those kind of standards on the pitch, in terms of discipline, it could mean the extra point at the end of the season to push the club up."

Commentary details

As well as full match commentaries, our summarisers will appear regularly on the Friday evening Matchday Preview (1800-1900 BST) and make contributions to our Breakfast and Drivetime programmes.

Our football commentaries are ONLY available on FM radio - 103.9 (Ipswich), 104.6 (West Suffolk), 95.5 (Lowestoft) and 95.9 (Aldeburgh).

BBC Suffolk is NOT available on DAB and we do NOT hold the rights to stream our commentaries on this website. Anyone listening to BBC Suffolk online will hear a statement saying the commentary is unavailable. Ipswich Town retains the webstreaming rights, so you need to contact them to find out about listening online.

The phone-in number for when Matchday is on-air is 01473 212121.

last updated: 06/08/2009 at 11:31
created: 04/08/2009

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