A RUN of four straight wins in Division One of the Thurlow Nunn League has lifted Ipswich Wanderers up to fifth.

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The run has raised hopes that Wanderers may mount a promotion push this season, although manager Glenn Read is not getting carried away by their recent good form.

“We have had a settled team. We have played the same back four for four or five games and they have been very solid.

“We have also brought in James Heathcote. We didn’t have a lot of options up top, but we have now changed to a 4-4-2 formation which has helped us.

“The team is getting stronger the more games we play. Skipper Lee Smith has been awesome in keeping things together and we have got a great team spirit.

“But we still need a couple of more players to add to the squad because if we get any injuries we struggle a bit, and hopefully we can get them in the next couple of weeks.”

Read is expecting to be without former Ipswich Town trainee Sam Brandon, who joined Wanderers at the start of this season, until around Christmas after he injured knee ligaments.

He said: “Obviously we want promotion, but at the start of the season we said if we can finish in the top six, we could then push on and give it a go next season.

“We still haven’t played the likes of Saffron Walden, Braintree Reserves and Whitton United, and we only lost to the top two – Cambridge University Press and Newmarket Town – by the only goal, but we do have some hard games coming up.”

Read took over the Humber Doucy Lane hotseat a year ago, and has steadily built his own team – left back Nile Francis, who is still eligible for their under-18 side, is the only first-team player he inherited who is still at the club.

Read praised the contribution of goalkeeper Jamie Stannard, who returned to Wanderers at the start of the season from Leiston, although a combination of working away and a knee injury restrict him from playing all the midweek games.

“Aaron Reid is always on the bench but when called upon has come in and done well. It is a great help having two good goalkeepers.”

Wanderers take a break from league action tomorrow when they travel to Debenham LC in the first round of the First Division Knock-out Cup.

Read said: “We beat them at home recently in the league, but they have strengthened since then with a couple of new players and had some decent results.

“It is never easy going to their place and I think it will be a closer game.

“After losing at our place they will certainly want to do better.”

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