'The Man Behind The Curtain'
He's been the man at the top of Ipswich Town for nearly three-and-a-half years, but Marcus Evans remains something of a mystery to us all. So, is it about time for the chairman to make himself known?
Evans' desire to keep a low profile has always seemed rather curious, if understandable. The secretive businessman, who has built his fortune through his eponymous corporate hospitality company, has always expressed his wish to live a private life with his family away from the stern gaze of the public eye. However, that approach has always seemed in conflict with his position as chairman of a famous old football league club, and whilst protecting him from public scrutiny, it has also allowed him to avoid becoming too closely connected with the club; after all, he can hardly be called a 'face' of Ipswich Town when he has gone to such lengths to keep his face hidden.
Town undoubtedly owe much to Evans, who was understood to have written off the club's substantial debts in 2007 as well as providing the funds for the recent succession of managers to work in the transfer market. However, having seen little return on his generous investment, it would not be surprising if Evans has ever had second thoughts about his ownership of Ipswich, and having kept himself in the shadows, what is to stop him from sneaking out?
The question therefore is this - should Marcus Evans finally come out into the open and declare his commitment to Ipswich Town once and for all? That's what we asked you in this week's poll - suggested by say-it-like-it-is - and here's what you had to say:
51% - Yes
21% - No
28% - Don't care
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Based on our poll, it seems the fans feel that Evans has been hiding away for long enough. Whilst 28% weren't particularly bothered either way, over half of those who voted said that they think Evans should come forward and make his commitment to Ipswich known - with only 21% in opposition. Comparisons could easily be made with the likes of Wigan Athletic, whom have benefited from a strong relationship with chairman Dave Whelan, or even Norwich City - however much we may not like her, Delia Smith is undoubtedly committed to the Canaries!
Whether or not such a relationship is really necessary for Ipswich to succeed, there is an accountability brought about by being in the public eye which would impact upon Evans' decision-making and serve to test whether he is truly committed to his investment in the club. By remaining in the shadows, doubts will continue to surface over whether he is prepared to provide the necessary support for new manager Paul Jewell to see the Blues succeed in future. However, the likelihood is that we will never truly come to know 'the man behind the curtain' - let's just hope it isn't all a charade...
This week's poll: 'Of the following strikers recently linked with Town, which one do you think we should be targeting?' (See right-hand column to view the list and place your vote)
What's your opinion of Marcus Evans? Do you think he is entitled to his privacy, or do you think his secrecy raises concerns about his commitment to the club? Share your views using the comment box below.
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