This weekend's Football League action gets under way on Friday night, when Ipswich Town face Birmingham City in a 7:45pm kick-off, and it's live on Sky Sports.The two sides come into this fixture on the back of contrasting results in midweek, but both have made bright starts to the Sky Bet Championship season.
Mick McCarthy's Tractor Boys bounced back from a 5-1 rout at Reading to overcome the previously undefeated Leeds United at Elland Road, a victory which saw them climb up to fifth in the division.
Like Leeds, Birmingham were also yet to be beaten prior to their midweek outing, but they came unstuck against Nottingham Forest at St. Andrew's on Tuesday night.
That loss saw Gary Rowett's men fall below Ipswich into seventh spot, but their form at the beginning of 2015/16 has been encouraging nonetheless, and they still boast a game in hand on their Suffolk opposition.
Their performances against Ipswich over recent years leaves a lot to be desired, though – the Blues haven't picked up three points against their weekend opponents in the past seven meetings, with the hosts winning 3-1, 1-0 and most recently 4-2 in the last three at Portman Road.
In the media
Manager Mick McCarthy was delighted with his side's reaction to the Reading defeat, but was always confident in his players.
“Reading was one of those games you get in football but I never doubted the players would react with a performance,” McCarthy told the club's official website.
“I couldn’t guarantee the result but I could guarantee a performance because these players have been different class over the last two or three years.
“People asked me if I was going to make loads of changes after the two defeats but I have a trust in these players. I’m loyal to them.”
However, Blues boss Gary Rowett has hinted he may make some changes to the squad after a busy recent schedule.
“We were on such a good run, I wanted to maybe change three or four and then the more you look at the team and I felt, can we just go again with another result,” Rowett told the Blues YouTube channel.
Young Player of the Month
Ipswich Town winger Ryan Fraser was rewarded for a fine start to the season by winning The Football's Young Player of the Month award for August.
Read more: Ryan Fraser named Football League Young Player of the Month
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