FOR an Ipswich Town supporter like myself, we’re living in unprecedented times.

For anyone of my age, mid-20s or younger, there hasn’t been much to write home about.

I was nine when George Burley’s class of 2000 were crowned Division One play-off winners at the old Wembley Stadium and it’s been nearly 20 long years since that unforgettable day.

For a club of Ipswich’s glorious history, supporters of my generation have been dealt something of a rough hand.

Hence why this season, so far, has been one of excitement and a welcome sense of optimism, on and off the pitch.

Since dropping out of the Premier League in 2002, the administration was an untimely blow and, as a result, the Championship became the norm.

I seem to remember ‘next year is Ipswich’s year’ was firmly on repeat among fans as the years rolled by.

As always, players and managers came and went and we thought (hoped) that eventually the hierarchy would get it right.

Surely we didn’t deserve years of disappointment, lack of ambition and the club dieing a slow and painful death?

There have been false dawns along the way, of course.

Most notably the play-off campaigns ending in disappointment at the hands of West Ham, with the latter nearly ending in automatic promotion in 2005.

We had to wait a decade before Town found themselves back in the play-off mix.

Mick McCarthy’s relatively successful 2014/15 campaign proved the pinnacle of his career in the Portman Road dugout - and we all know how that one ended up…

Nonetheless, it didn’t feel like the Yorkshireman had a side ready to dominate regardless of promotion to the promised land.

Both Royle and McCarthy were somewhat a victim of their own success and eventually came unstuck amid political turmoil in Suffolk, regarding budget or style of football.

It wasn’t to improve thereafter.

Until recently, many have become disillusioned with how the club was run, the heart stopped beating in the community and people became sick and tired of the club's same old failings.

The fans were not being heard and, in the end, something had to give.

And so, it was only a matter of time before relegation settled in after years of stagnation.

You could say that 2019 was unlike any other time for supporters, not just my generation but supporters across the board, young and old.

We have lived with stories of Town’s past; the Sir Alf Ramsey and Sir Bobby Robson tenures, of the club dominating teams at home and abroad, of Portman Road being a fortress, where a victory was assumed before kick-off, where you had the chance to watch the best players live on our halo turf.

Now we are privileged to be watching what our forefathers so affectionately told us stories of: beating sides with complete control, going unbeaten, with a side containing some of the best players in the league, now under the watchful eye of saviour Paul Lambert, who you have complete faith in getting the job done - albeit in League One - but ultimately the club, manager, players and fans are once again united, together.

It's difficult not to marvel at how complete this side is that the former Norwich City boss has built.

From Tomas Holy who could probably change a street lamp bulb on his own, standing at 6’7 between the sticks, to James Norwood, who is possibly the most unique and likeable footballer I’ve ever had the privilege to watch in a Town shirt.

It’s indicative of how highly this team have come from this time 12 months ago.

We are, though, aware that this is unlike previous times and not a false dawn.

This is a young side that is still developing under the best manager the club could possibly have.

Supporters of an older generation will now admit that they took for granted a team top of the bill in every aspect of football.

Nobody of my generation can say the same.

Anyone who says ‘Ipswich thought they'd won the league after nine games’ later in the season will not be basing such a narrative on actuality.

Nobody thinks the title is won, more that fans feel they have their club back and enjoying the good times once more.

We've lived with people telling us to be careful what we wish for, false promises, more than ten years without a victory in the East Anglian derby, Marcus Evans’ shoe-string budget, Roy Keane and McCarthy fan fallouts, endless 'next year is your year' nonsense; the club being on the brink of bankruptcy.

All that is why we are fully appreciative of what the the current crop of players are delivering.

But for this team to be remembered in the manner it both should and deserves to be, it must win promotion back to the Championship.

Just ask the likes of Gillingham, Coventry and even Sunderland.

They will tell you the longer you are in this league, the harder it is to get out of it.

Ending our League One days at the first attempt with promotion could be the start of a sustained and appreciated period of dominance for Ipswich once again.

This season is a chance to re-group and build on the positives; if it can work for Southampton, Bournemouth and even the Canaries up the road, then there is no reason why it cannot work for us.

Perhaps one day we can tell our kids and grandkids the stories like what we were told.

I just hope YouTube isn't deemed as old-fashioned as VHS in 30 years' time.