East Anglian derby

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East Anglian derby
East Anglia Derby Kits.svg
Other names Old Farm derby
Locale East Anglia
First meeting 15 November 1902 (1902-11-15)
Latest meeting Norwich 3–1 Ipswich
(16 May 2015)
Stadiums Carrow Road
Portman Road
Meetings total 142
Most wins Ipswich Town (60)
All-time series Ipswich Town: 60
Draw: 26
Norwich City: 56
Largest victory

Ipswich 5–0 Norwich
(21 February 1998, Home) Ipswich 1–5 Norwich

(21 April 2011, Away)

The East Anglian derby is a sobriquet used to describe football matches held between Norwich City and Ipswich Town. In recent years it has sometimes been described humorously as the Old Farm derby,[1] a reference to the Old Firm derby played between Celtic and Rangers.[2] The derby has been rated as the second fiercest rivalry in England.

There have been 142 instances of the derby, with Ipswich winning 60 to Norwich's 57. The series began in the early 20th century, when both clubs were amateur, with the first derby between the two professional clubs taking place in 1939. The most recent match was in a Championship Play Off second leg on 16 May 2015, which ended in a 3–1 win at Carrow Road for Norwich City, who won the tie 4–2 on aggregate.[3]

Style and atmosphere[edit]

According to the Football Rivalries Report 2008, the East Anglian derby is the second fiercest rivalry in England after the Black Country derby between West Bromwich Albion and Wolverhampton Wanderers.[4][5] The report stated, "The gap of 40 miles doesn't make those East Anglia 'Old Farm' derbies any less intense, and this, combined with the regularity and closeness of the games, and the recent fortunes of both clubs, put it ahead of all but one rivalry in League football."[5]

Former referee Keith Hackett, said of the East Anglian derby:

As for the most aggressive atmosphere that I’ve ever encountered, believe it or not it was at Carrow Road for Norwich v Ipswich Town. There are certain derby fixtures that you always know are going to be highly charged, but the East Anglian derby tops the lot. The players came out of the tunnel as if they were ready for a boxing match. The noise was intense and aggressive.[6]

Rob Hadgraft, who wrote The Old Farm, suggested some reasons for the intensity of the rivalry: "I think it's because each club represents the entire county ... There's only one club in Norfolk, and the same goes for Suffolk ... The people live up to 40 miles apart, so they don't mingle and have pals who support the other lot ... you've got two sets of fans who never really mingle or mix, and there's no proper friendships. They really do despise each other."[7]


For more details on this topic, see History of Ipswich Town F.C..
For more details on this topic, see History of Norwich City F.C..

The first derby was held between the two clubs on 15 November 1902, when both sides were still playing at an amateur level. The Norfolk & Suffolk League fixture was played in Norwich and finished 1–0 to Norwich City. Norwich turned professional in 1905, Ipswich following in 1936. Ipswich were elected to the Football League in 1938 and the first league game between the two clubs (in the Third Division (South)) was on 2 September 1939. Played at Portman Road, Ipswich, the match finished 1–1, although the league was abandoned due to the Second World War.

As the clubs have tended to play in the same division over the years, the derby has been contested in most seasons since this time, the longest gap being for a period of six seasons between 1986–87 and 1991–92.[8] Occasionally the two teams will play in different divisions resulting in the derby not being contested.

Two of the more notable meetings between the two clubs have come in cup competitions. In the 1972–73 season Ipswich beat Norwich 4–2 on aggregate to win the two legged Texaco Cup, with 2–1 wins in both games.[9] In 1985 the clubs met in the semi-final of the League Cup with a place in the Wembley final at stake. Ipswich won the first leg 1–0 at Portman Road, but Norwich scored early in the return leg at Carrow Road to level the tie. With extra-time looming, Steve Bruce scored a late winner to send Norwich to Wembley.[10]

In the 2014–15 season there were four East Anglian derbies as the sides met in the Football League Championship Play-offs. The first match of the season was held at Portman Road on 23 August and it finished with Norwich winning 1–0. The reverse fixture at Carrow Road was on 1 March and Norwich again won, this time 2–0. Norwich also overtook Ipswich in the league table after Ipswich had a considerable lead for the majority of the season. The two play-off ties were held on 9 and 16 May, first at Ipswich. The first leg finished 1–1 and the second leg finished with Norwich taking their third derby victory of the season by winning 3–1 and therefore booking their place in the Play-Off final at Wembley Stadium.


The derby has been contested 109 times in competitive games, 54 of which have been played at Ipswich and 54 at Norwich. In all, both sides have 45 victories. The clubs have also played each other in friendlies and testimonials. The highest attendance in the derby at Portman Road is 35,077 in a First Division match in September 1975 while Carrow Road hosted 39,890 spectators in an FA Cup match in January 1962. John Wark is Ipswich's leading goalscorer in the derby with nine goals,[11] while Hugh Curran remains Norwich's top scorer with five, a record that has stood since 1968.[12]

A summary of derby games in individual competitions, as of 5 July 2015, is shown below.[13]

Pie chart representation of results
at Ipswich at Norwich Ref
Competition Played Ipswich win Draw Norwich win Ipswich goals Norwich goals Played Ipswich win Draw Norwich win Ipswich goals Norwich goals
Norfolk and Suffolk League 3 1 0 2 3 8 3 0 1 2 1 4 [11]
League 43 23 6 14 81 46 43 15 9 19 50 56 [14]
Division 3 South Cup 1 1 0 0 4 0 1 0 0 1 0 1 [11]
FA Cup 1 0 0 1 1 2 2 0 1 1 1 2 [14]
League Cup 5 1 1 3 5 8 3 1 1 1 4 4 [14]
Texaco Cup 1 1 0 0 2 1 1 1 0 0 2 1 [11]
Full Members Cup 1 1 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 1 0 2 [11]
Friendly/Testimonial/Charity 16 11 3 2 29 23 17 4 4 9 25 33 [11]
Total (excluding friendlies) 55 28 7 20 97 65 54 17 12 25 58 70
Total (including friendlies) 71 39 10 22 126 88 71 21 16 34 83 103

One team has scored five goals in a derby match on five occasions – Ipswich in 1946–47, 1947–48, 1976–77 and 1997–98 and Norwich in 2010–11. The highest aggregate score in a match is seven goals, Ipswich winning 3–4 in a Division 2 match at Carrow Road in 1968–69. At least six players have scored hat-tricks in derby matches–Hugh Curran in 1968–69 and Grant Holt in 2010–11 for Norwich[12] and Albert Day in 1946–47,[15] Colin Viljoen in 1967–68,[16] Trevor Whymark in 1976–77,[16] and Alex Mathie in 1997–98 for Ipswich.[17]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Stevenson, Jonathan (19 April 2009). "Live – Premier League & FA Cup". BBC Sport. BBC. Retrieved 19 April 2009. 
  2. ^ http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-suffolk-32736327
  3. ^ "Ipswich Town 1–1 Norwich City". 9 May 2015. Retrieved 9 May 2015. 
  4. ^ http://www.eadt.co.uk/sport/anglian_derby_england_s_second_greatest_rivalry_1_187286 Anglian derby England's second greatest rivalry]
  5. ^ a b "Football Rivalries Report 2008". Archived from the original on 5 March 2008. 
  6. ^ http://you-are-the-ref.com/the-worlds-top-10-greatest-football-stadiums/
  7. ^ http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-suffolk-32736327
  8. ^ "East Anglian Derby". Ipswich Town Football Club. Archived from the original on 19 March 2009. Retrieved 9 May 2011. 
  9. ^ Anglo-Scottish Cup & Texaco Cup – Full Results. Retrieved 8 May 2011.
  10. ^ Norwich Milk Cup special: Day 3, Norwich Evening News, 24 March 2010. Retrieved 2011-05-13.
  11. ^ a b c d e f "Head to Head since 1878". Pride of Anglia. Archived from the original on 30 June 2007. Retrieved 9 February 2008. 
  12. ^ a b Bailey, Michael (30 November 2010). "Hugh Curran: Grant Holt won’t forget Norwich City derby hat-trick". Norwich Evening News. Retrieved 11 May 2011. 
  13. ^ "Head to head Norwich vs. Ipswich". soccerbase.com. Retrieved 5 July 2015. 
  14. ^ a b c "Ipswich Town : Head-to-Head vs Norwich City". http://www.statto.com. Retrieved 5 July 2015. 
  15. ^ "Ipswich Town (1) 5–0 (0) Norwich City". Pride of Anglia. Retrieved 9 May 2015. 
  16. ^ a b "The 10 best and worst East Anglian derby matches for Norwich City fans". Norwich Evening News. Archant. 24 February 2015. Retrieved 9 May 2015. 
  17. ^ Mathie tips Ipswich for derby win, BBC sport, 5 December 2008. Retrieved 13 May 2011.