Ipswich is going to be rocking today as the Tractor boys play their first home game of the new Championship season at Portman Road.

The crowd is expected to be massive for this highly anticipated fixture and I for one can’t wait. I’ve just landed the role as stadium announcer and I’m hoping to play my part in getting the crowd going on match days. Not that they need much encouragement these days. The fans are brilliant.

Last season was amazing and to see the crowd’s flocking back was fabulous. Now we’re back in the Championship it’s going to be even bigger.

It’s so lovely to see the smiles on the faces of the fans, especially the younger ones who will be the next generation of fans for years to come. In recent years the fanbase has been getting older but now that’s being reversed big time.

Every week the club makes a special effort to say thank you to the first-time fans and every week new ones arrive! It’s lovely to see the kids of today wearing Ipswich Town shirts, a few years ago it would have been Manchester City, Chelsea, and Liverpool but not now.

Portman Road is looking amazing with a new pitch and the ground looking better than it has for a very long time.

Even though former owner Marcus Evans invested millions into the club, the stadium was looking really drab and rundown in places. Not now, it’s looking shiny and new.

It’s so plush now it’s even got deep blue carpet around the pitch. It probably needs someone to get the vacuum out every week!

The pitch itself has got undersoil heating and is the latest in high tech surfaces, the feedback from the players has been excellent.

The club is really going for it with the US investment allowing it to modernise everything, it’s even got its own TV channel called Town TV.

It’s a far cry from when I started going to the ground as a young boy in the 1970’s. I can remember standing on the terraces close to the away supporters with coins and even darts being thrown at supporters. Thank goodness those days are well gone and its now a lovely safe environment to take the kids to. Football yes rouses passions, and the language and songs can be a bit fruity but ultimately it should be something families feel that they can go to and enjoy. Ipswich Town prides itself on creating that sort of environment and has won plaudits for it.

Even non-football fans should be hoping the Town do well as it brings revenue to not only Ipswich but Suffolk too and raises our profile nationally.

I really hope the local businesses will get a lift on matchdays, the bars, hotels and restaurants will hopefully get a much-needed boost. It’s great to see Ipswich town centre buzzing again on a Saturday and long may that continue, hopefully for many years to come.

It does feel that this once mighty club is starting roar again and so are the fans.

When Ipswich Town wins it puts a smile on so many faces and I hope come 5 o’clock tonight we’re all beaming ear to ear!! Come on you Blues!