Stoke are Ipswich bound
8th April 2006
Stoke make the long trek along the A14 to Ipswich on Saturday with an unbeaten run now going back four games.
The season has finished in any meaningful way for both teams as the Tractor Boys have also failed to inspire this season and only sit a couple of places above the Potters in the league. But both teams are now firmly looking towards next August and both will be playing some youngsters to see how they react to the cut and thrust of Championship football.
Johan Boskamp continues his game of musical chairs by bringing in Peter Kopteff who has so far failed to claim a regular first team spot since moving from Norwegian club, Viking Stavanger in January. Kopteff blames his lack of form on exhaustion after playing a full season in Norway (which finished in December) before joining the Potters.
Mamady Sidibe has talking about his lack of goals and his first season in the Potteries: 'I am happy in general, but I know I need to score more goals'. He, along with everyone else, would like the current managerial issues sorted, 'Yes, I am happy if he (Boskamp) stays. But it's good for us to know if he's staying because when you go on holiday its nice to know who the manager is.'
Ipswich Town Team News:
Ipswich will put Alan Lee through a last minute fitness test after he has been suffering with a groin injury. If he is deemed not fit, Richard Naylor will play. Jim Magilton is also included in the squad but only returned to training on Thursday after injuring his foot in their game against Hull ten days ago.
Ipswich will also blood a youngster, 18 year old defender Chris Casement will make his first start for the Tractor Boys.
Player to watch: Jason De Vos
De Vos scored against the Potters in the 2-2 draw at the Brit in January.
Stoke City Team News:
Andy Wilkinson could get another chance to start. It's not yet clear if Sam Bangoura will start, but if not Mamady Sidibe will lead the attack again.
Player to watch: Josip Skoko
Played well against Sheffield United last weekend and now seems to be coming good as he builds to this summer's World Cup playing for Australia.
Match Facts & Stats
Ipswich have the slight lead over Stoke in the League, winning 26 against the Potter's 21. 16 games have been drawn.
Easter Saturday: Southampton (Home) 3pm ** 'Kids for a quid' game**
Easter Monday: Reading (Away) 3pm