New Ipswich Town arrival Conor Chaplin has revealed he joined League One Ipswich Town and dropped down a tier because of the Tractor Boys’ future ambitions, in an interview with iFollow Ipswich.
The Suffolk-based side have already made ten signings in this window so far as part of a major rebuild at Portman Road, following manager Paul Cook’s public disdain for last season’s squad at Portman Road as they finished ninth in the third tier.
However, after seeing so many senior players leave the club and a few more likely to follow them before the end of the window, the Tractor Boys are still in the transfer market for reinforcements and could add even more quality to their ranks before the transfer window closes at the end of next month.
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This has made them one of the favourites to win promotion next term and if the new squad jells together quickly, the possibility of winning the league title isn’t out of their reach despite the likes of Sunderland, Lincoln City, Rotherham United, Charlton Athletic and others all likely to be competing for promotion.
This opportunity to come to Portman Road was too good to turn down for Chaplin, who made a respectable 34 appearances in the Championship last season.
Speaking to iFollow Ipswich about his move, the 24-year-old said: “From the outside it looks silly, jumping from the Championship to League One but, first and foremost this is a massive football club.
“I know that the ambition, having spoken to people at the football club, the ambition that’s here is exciting.
“That’s something that excites me. As a player, you always want to play in good teams, teams that are ambitious and want to go places, so that’s something that really drew me to the club, along with the manager as well.”
The Ipswich boss has won promotion twice in his managerial career, once with then-League Two sides Portsmouth and another time with Wigan Athletic as they secured promotion back to the Championship during the 2017/18 season.
And they only suffered relegation from the Championship two years later because of their points deduction – but despite his promotion-winning pedigree – another man was also vital in securing Chaplin’s move to Portman Road.
The forward continued: “Adam Webster was very, very complimentary about the club and the place in general.
“He really loved living here and playing for the club as well.
“He spoke very highly about the professionalism at the club, and that’s something I’m really into as well, so he only had good things to say about the football club.”
Brighton and Hove Albion defender Webster played for the Tractor Boys between 2016 and 2018 before moving on to Bristol City and was Chaplin’s teammate at Portsmouth prior to the centre-back’s move to Portman Road.
Considering the fact Barnsley look to still be in decent shape after losing their manager and captain within the space of weeks, this is a risky move for Chaplin who appeared regularly in the second tier last season.
In saying that, Ipswich Town are already looking like a solid side going into the next campaign despite not fully finalising their squad ahead of the new season – and you can’t blame the 24-year-old for joining this exciting project in Suffolk.
Next season will not be a walk in the park for Paul Cook’s side but they are likely to be up there competing after a disappointing last campaign and if they get to the Championship, the forward will already know Cook will be backed in the transfer market after this summer’s rebuild.
If the rebuild works out and they have a successful next 12 months, this club could be going places. But it’s a big if.