The View From Churchmans

Ipswich Town home match reports from just another season-ticket holder

MATCH REPORT

Ipswich Town 1 Nottingham Forest 1

I’m not sure where the all-important, confidence-boosting first win is going to come from at the moment, I must be honest. Forest were alright, nothing more, but by the end Town were hanging on for the point, and had McAuley not fallen on his sword, it would have been a thoroughly disappointing home defeat.

And it had all started so well! I suppose you could argue the evening went downhill in a fairly linear fashion: a first minute goal, a first half where Town played pretty encouragingly, then a second half where Forest slowly took over, ending with a red card to prevent an almost certain goal. The plus points included the commitment shown by many of the players in that first 45 minutes; maybe we saw the first signs of something decent there. But the loss of shape and cohesion later on, especially after what we now know were forced substitutions, was quite worrying. With Earnshaw and Adebola up front (what sort of team has that sort of strength up front and leaves it on the bench?), Forest were by far the more threatening team, and the Town defence really couldn’t cope. Stead and Walters at the other end were no threat in comparison. The league position may not lie at the moment.

Overall Town performance:
5/10 – Yet again, toothless up front, but the midfield showed promise at times

Opposition quality:
6/10 – Would have run out easy winners if the subs had been on from the start

Referee:
3/10 – Lacked control from the outset, gave some stupid yellow cards to both sides, and seemed to make no allowances for the atrocious conditions

Match excitement:
6/10 – Pretty average, but plenty to talk about

Opposition supporters:
5/10 – Reasonable turnout

Player ratings, as ever 1 to 5 for each of effort/achievement…

WRIGHT 6 (3/3) wasn’t tested too much, as it turned out

ROSENIOR 6 (3/3) was pretty decent, and could be a good acquisition; BRUCE 6 (3/3) still doesn’t have the air of a captain about him, but did a decent job; McAULEY 3 (1/2) was more hesitant (nervous?) than I can ever remember, and saved his worst mistake for last, giving himself the option of a red card or being the cause of a defeat; DELANEY 6 (3/3) was unspectacular but solid, which I think was just what he needed to be at the moment.

EDWARDS 6 (3/3) didn’t set the world on fire, as you’d like a winger to do, but let’s leave the jury out; LEADBITTER 7 (4/3) epitomised the effort being put in during the first half, and was very influential, although less so as the match wore on; QUINN 6 (4/2) worked hard and seemed to complement his central midfield partner well; MARTIN 4 (2/2) wasn’t as involved as might be hoped, and was lucky not to get a second booking on several occasions.

WALTERS 5 (3/2) made a good target man, but needs a better foil alongside him in that role, and I’m unsure if the club has anything suitable; STEAD 4 (2/2) was poor in his positioning, control, finishing …well, everything really.

From the bench, PETERS added a bit of excitement but was hampered by having to drop back into a defensive role; COLBACK seemed less effective than Quinn; and TROTTER did his normal decent support job, but Town really needed some creativity.

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