Skuse set for career high

Date published: Friday 15th May 2015 4:43

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There is nothing to separate the two fierce East Anglia rivals heading into their Carrow Road showdown following the 1-1 draw at Portman Road last week.

The prize at stake is not merely the local bragging rights. A place at Wembley awaits the winners – a game now reckoned to be worth £150million – and that is not lost on Skuse.

“It’s the biggest game of my career and I’m looking forward to it,” Skuse told the club’s official website. “We all are.

“There is a massive prize at stake for the winner.

“If I was offered automatic promotion at the start of the season, I obviously would have taken it but the next best thing is to go up via the play-offs at Wembley in front of a big crowd and millions watching on TV and we have a chance of doing that.”

Norwich have experienced the highs and lows of promotion from League One to the Barclays Premier League and back down again in recent seasons, while Ipswich have become entrenched in the Championship.

The Suffolk club have spent the last 15 years there – the longest spell of sides currently in the division – and Skuse insists the pressure is still on their rivals from Norfolk.

“Norwich will be favourites and the pressure will be on them,” he said.

“They were favourites before we kicked off last weekend and their fans will be expecting them to beat us again.”

Ipswich boss Mick McCarthy has lost five of the six play-offs in which he has been manager in, but Skuse feels that will have no bearing on the outcome in the Saturday lunchtime kick-off.

“We’re confident we can go there and get the result we need,” he added.

“It was a fantastic atmosphere at Portman Road last week. There was a moment after we scored and we got a corner and a massive roar went up and it took me back a bit. I’ve not experienced that before.

“The game last week had something extra over the two league meetings we’ve had.

“There was that extra spice to the occasion. I’m sure it will be the same on Saturday.

“They will have their fans right behind them but we will have our own Barmy Army and they will be making plenty of noise.”

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