Ipswich Town defender Luke Garbutt issues a confident message ahead of Sunderland clash
Ipswich defender Luke Garbutt has issued a confident message ahead of the Tractor Boys’ clash with Sunderland – insisting his team is ‘probably as good as it gets’ in League One.
But the Everton loanee has predicted a ‘tight’ promotion race in the third tier, with a number of sides gunning for one of the two automatic spots.
Garbutt, who netted the winner for Paul Lambert’s side against Burton on the opening day, is now relishing the chance to test himself against the Black Cats – who were the bookmakers’ early tip for the title.
And while appreciative of Sunderland’s qualities, the left-back believes that Ipswich – bolstered by the return of some key players – are among the best in the division.
Speaking to the East Anglian Daily Times, he said: "We have great strength in depth, especially going forward, plus we have a couple of centre-halves coming back and the skipper coming back next week.
"The squad is probably as good as it gets in this division, I believe so.
“We just need to keep moving forward and keep that mentality of trying to win every game.
"We should be up there this season, 100%. If we work hard and do the basics well, we have more than enough going forward to be a threat in this league.
"We just have take care of the basics and do the defensive duties well, and then I believe we are going to get more positive than negative results.
"Last season this league had a few big teams, and there are a few big-hitters again this season, including Sunderland.
"The standard of football towards the top end of the division will be good, and I think it will be tight."
Ipswich are set to be roared on by a crowd of more than 20,000 at Portman Road – with a bumper attendance expected for the club’s first home game of the new campaign.
And Garbutt believes they could prove key when the Black Cats come to town.
“The supporters were great (at Burton),” he admitted.
"They really got behind us. We will get backed, and that should push the club forward."