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Ipswich and Norwich to meet in Championship play-offs

Mick McCarthy, who's guided Ipswich Town to the Championship play-offs despite losing at Blackburn Photo: PA

The fans have mused about it for some time.

Now followers of Ipswich Town and Norwich city know their teams are meeting in the SkyBet Championship Play-Offs for a place at Wembley and ultimately promotion to the Barclay's Premier League.

Norwich's 4-2 win over Fulham meant they finished 3rd in the table, overtaking Middlesbrough who drew 0-0 against Brighton.

Ipswich, however, needed a Derby County defeat to secure 6th spot. Town's 3-2 defeat at Blackburn gave Brentford the chance to overtake after beating Wigan 3-0. They finished level on points with Brentford with the better goal difference.

However Derby's surprise 3-0 defeat against Reading set up the East Anglian derby play-offs

Norwich City boss Alex Neil has already enjoyed a derby victory over Ipswich this season Credit: PA

"I knew it was going to be Ipswich. It's just one of those things. But as a manager and a player they're the games you want to be involved in.

"It's probably the biggest derby ever between the two clubs. The fact that what's at stake at the end of it. And it always adds that extra spice for the fans in terms of bragging rights and getting one over on the old enemy.

"We know exactly what's at stake. We know how much it means to everyone. And we'll do what we've done since I've been here. We'll give it our very best shot and do everything that we possibly can to try and get there."

– Alex Neil, Norwich City manager

Ipswich manager Mick McCarthy admitted to being relieved after watching his side go a goal up, then 3-1 down at Ewood Park before Daryl Murphy's late penalty kept them in the game

"Yes (relief) but delight as well because we had to remind ourselves in the dressing room we're in the play-offs, and deservedly so because with 78 points we deserve it over the season," said McCarthy

"It's inspirational, I think, the thought of going into them. I don't think anybody gave us a chance at the start of the season. I think everybody's seeing what we're made of.

"We weren't great today but kept going and could have got back in it. I'd like to have done it on our own merits but the play-offs is something to relish and look forward to."

– Mick McCarthy, Ipswich Town manager

The first leg will be played at Portman Road on Saturday May 9th at 12.15pm, with the return at Carrow Road a week later.

The contests come thirty years after Ipswich and Norwich met in the semi-finals of the Milk Cup in 1985. Norwich won 2-1 on aggregate before going on to win the cup at Wembley.

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