Hero Bobby honoured by Ipswich

Last updated : 16 July 2002 By Luke Thornhill

"You know the most wonderful thing about this?" Sir Bobby told the Evening Chronicle. "That I'm still alive to see it."

Robson spent 14 years in charge of the Suffolk club, winning both the FA Cup and UEFA Cup for the side.

"Most people honoured in this way never actually see the statue.

"It was a very strange feeling to see myself in statue form. Hard to put into words.

"I have always had a strong affiliation with Ipswich, not just the club but the town itself.

"I spent almost 14 years at Portman Road, which is a long time in management by any standards, and I still have a home there."

Indeed, had it not been for the fact that England came calling in 1982, Sir Bobby might never have left.

"Who knows, maybe I would still have been there," said Sir Bobby. "It was only the lure of managing my country that eventually pulled me away.

"I always said that would be the only job to end my time with Ipswich. I lost count of the number of jobs I was offered.

"Derby wanted me to succeed Cloughie. There was Leeds, too, after Don Revie went and I also turned down Barcelona twice, as well as Athletic Bilbao. After we won the UEFA Cup at Ipswich in 1981 I was offered the Manchester United job.

"Sunderland also wanted me and I said no to Everton twice."