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Farewell to the King of the Blues

Sir Bobby Robson, former manager of Newcastle Utd, England and a brace of successful European clubs (such as PSV Eindhoven, Barcelona), has died after a brave fight against cancer. But the club that in many ways will feel the pain of his loss the most is Ipswich Town FC, the club I have supported since I was a young boy

He took this relatively unfashionable club on the UK’s east coast to the heights of success in the FA Cup and in European competition, coming also very close to winning the old domestic First Division. His teams were glorious to watch. He conducted himself with grace, good humour – apart from the occasional tiff with the media – and had an infectious love of the sport that inspired football fans and players from all clubs. RIP.

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11 comments to Farewell to the King of the Blues

  • TomC

    RIP Bobby. Always was, and always will be a legend at Portman Road. Some tributes here.

  • Laird

    What does “King of the Blues” mean? I thought this was going to be about a musician!

  • TomC

    King, because Bobby was their best ever manager, and Blues because this is a nickname for Ipswich Town FC.

  • Alisa

    Yes Laird, I thought it was going to be about BB King – phew! Still, RIP.

  • JP,
    For me Sir Bobby is always black and white. I appreciate what he did for your club (and for England) but for me he was a Geordie through and through.

  • manuel II paleologos

    Some very moving tributes on the telly last night too. I found it odd how thrilling it was to see the replays of the Italia 90 charge, especially that Platt goal against Belgium.

    Just a quick question – surely a “brace” means “two”? He managed a whole bunch of them.

  • Johnathan Pearce

    Nick M, of course. I was not trying to downplay Robson’s heritage. But it happens to be a matter of hard fact that his longest unbroken spell as a club manager was in East Anglia, not the north-east. And the way in which the top brass sacked a great man who had taken Newcastle to the top six of the Premiership in three consecutive seasons, and into the latter stages of European competition, was and remains a disgrace. It says a lot about Robson that he bore few grudges as a result.

    I hope Newcastle, a fine club, is guided by wiser hands in the future. Its fans certainly deserve it.

  • mike

    Robson was right about Italia ’90 – England should have won it that year. I always think of him as the best England manager since Alf Ramsey.

    “Nick M, of course. I was not trying to downplay Robson’s heritage. But it happens to be a matter of hard fact that his longest unbroken spell as a club manager was in East Anglia, not the north-east.”

    I might be thought a tit for saying this, but Bobby Robson was born in County Durham, not Newcastle Jonathan. I too am from County Durham (and yes, I’m a Sunderland fan – but that’s irrelevant) and I resent the presumption that, just because someone was born in the North-East, he must therefore – as a matter of “heritage” – be one of the “Geordie Nation”.

  • I was there in ’78, behind the Arsenal goal. Oh happy day, and thank you Bobby.

  • Johnathan Pearce

    Folks, one thing I have learned is how touchy people from the north-east are about the use of the word Geordie!

  • virgil xenophon

    I was stationed at RAF Bentwaters/Woodbridge 68-71 in the USAF and lived for a while in an apt hi-rise with a view of the stadium on Portman Rd. and could actually see part (but alas not all) of the pitch through corner crease in the stadium walls. The Blues were a 2nd div. club in those days and their glory days were yet to come which I unfortunately missed, but have fond memories of the short walk across the street to the stadium and the many afternoons spent cheering on the “locals” in all too many lost causes. Would dearly love to see them return to their glory days, but rural East Anglia and Ipswitch is not a “fashionable” part of the country.

    (At one point I was seeing the London-based daughter of a producer for BBC TV whom I had met when she was up to Woodbridge to see an old family friend and he told me one day [circa 1970] about that part of England that: “What you have to realize is you are very fortunate in one way from a historical aspect as that part of the UK is the only place still much like life was lived in the England of 30-40 yrs ago.” LOL, so true, so very true!)