On This Day – Ipswich Town Play First League Game

27-8-1938: Ipswich Town played their first League game on this day in 1938. Ipswich beat Southend 4-2 at Portman Road in Division 3 (South).

In 1961-62 Ipswich became the first club to win the First Division in their first season after promotion. Nottingham Forest would repeat the feat under the guidance of Brian Clough in 1977-78. Ipswich where managed by future England manager Alf Ramsey.

Ipswich’s second period in the limelight came with another future England manager at the helm – Bobby Robson. Under Robsons management Ipswich won the 1978 FA Cup Final (1-0 over Arsenal) and the 1981 UEFA Cup Final (AZ 67 Alkmaar 3-0 and 2-4). Robson’s team where built around an effective youth policy – Ipswich won the FA Youth Cup in 1973 and 1975 – which produced international players such as Kevin Beattie, George Burley, John Wark and Alan Brazil. In additon Robson was a shrewd dealer in the transfer market signing Paul Mariner and Dutch duo Frans Thijssen and Arnold Muhren to supplement his home grown talent. Ipswich where one of the countries leading clubs in the late Seventies and early Eighties twice finishing second in the First Division (1980-81 and 1981-82).

Ipswich gained a more dubious fame in recent years when they lost 9-0 to Manchester United at Old Trafford in 1995, a record for the Premier League. But Ipswich supporters would rather remember 1980 when Ipswich beat Manchester United 6-0 at Portman Road in a match where Gary Bailey saved three penalties for United.

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