Former Norwich City striker Alan Lee apologises to Ipswich Town fans

Alan Lee, a former Norwich City loanee, is now back at Ipswich Town.

Alan Lee, a former Norwich City loanee, is now back at Ipswich Town. - Credit: Focus Images

Alan Lee has apologised to Ipswich Town fans for his controversial spell at bitter rivals Norwich City, insisting his heart has always been very much in Suffolk.

The 35-year-old – who played more than 100 games for the Blues between 2006 and 2008 – returned to Portman Road this summer to begin his coaching career within the club's academy, with manager Mick McCarthy having also registered him as a first team player.

Many supporters have never forgiven the Irishman for his brief loan spell with the Canaries in 2009 though, during which time he played against Town and talked about it being an 'absolute pleasure' to play for the Norfolk club.

It was also the season that saw Norwich City relegated to the third tier of English football for the first time in almost 50 years – a far cry from the Premier League status the Canaries currently enjoy.

'I know I've got some making up to do,' said the striker.

'I'll do everything I can to win them over. I know I got some criticism for that at the time, but I was lonely in London (at Crystal Palace), my friend (Bryan Gunn) was manager of Norwich at the time and it was an opportunity to get back up here with my family.

'I apologise, but it was something that was right for me at that time.'

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Lee spent three months on loan at City, scoring two goals in his seven appearances.

Yet the striker experienced just one win and a draw in that period before returning to Selhurst Park.

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