The View From Churchmans

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


Ipswich Town 2 QPR 1

OK, bear in mind that any criticism which follows should be taken in
the context that I’d have settled for the worst Town performance in
history if it meant a goal or two and a win today. And so whatever
else, at least we got the important things. But the tide hasn’t turned
dramatically or anything; this was a bit better than February’s
displays, but not by much – fortunately, QPR are below us for a
reason, and equally fortunately, our run-in includes several more
opportunities like that.

It seemed to me like the team came out under instructions not to give
an early goal away under any circumstances. The result, however, was
that we just let QPR boss the game for fifteen minutes, which was a
bit scary. Then we started to get more adventurous, and after that, it
was just two mediocre sides scrapping it out for 75 minutes (or more
accurately, six hours and 75 minutes, given how long the ref played on
for at the end).

The defence was pretty decent, although having to put two men on their
useful-looking no.31 deprived us of perhaps our most potent support
line to the attack, Dan Harding, who rarely ventured forward. The
strikeforce failed to gel again, and there was little behind them,
even if our central midfielders, who both tend to be
defensively-minded, seemed to be putting more effort in than normal to
get forward.

I think everyone at the club will take the opportunity to jump on the
positives of the afternoon (the fact two strikers scored from open
play, and the three points), and they’d be right to do so. But we
still look bereft of creativity in midfield, and frequently ponderous
up front. There’s a lot more to do.

Overall Town Performance: 6 (3 for effort/3 for achievement)

Player Ratings

PRICE 6 (3/3): Contributed to the slight air of panic in the first
quarter of an hour, but generally competent, and an improvement of
some of the slightly shaky home displays of late.

WRIGHT 6 (3/3), BRUCE 5 (3/2), DE VOS 7 (4/3), HARDING 6 (3/3): Jason
was back to his more commanding self, although I have a suspicion he
might have been the weak link in QPR’s goal. Alex Bruce improved after
making several unforced errors at the start, and the full-backs were
again fine defensively, but weren’t able to contribute much as the
team went forward.

PETERS 5 (3/2), LEGWINSKI 7 (4/3), GARVAN 6 (3/3), ROBERTS 4 (2/2):
Several people (in other parts of the ground!) seemed to think Owen
had a terrific game, but that didn’t register around us: we all though
Monica made a much more intelligent and significant contribution. Owen
was OK, but seemed, to us, to be a little off the pace. The wingers
were much more of a problem though. Again Jamie worked hard, but he
really doesn’t seem to have the ability to deliver anything like the
quality of final ball which should be expected from a creator. Far
worse though was Gary Roberts, whose ability to slow the play down
started to get reminiscent of Darren Currie at times, and although he
supplied the pass for the first goal, he was given a lot of time to do
so. His finishing, when given the chance, was woeful. He’s really
going through a bad patch at present, and I’m sure he’s much better
than this.

LEE 5 (2/3), WALTERS 6 (3/3): Not inspiring. But hey, they got a goal
each, and nobody’s ungrateful. Alan Lee displayed all his worst traits
(slow to react, even slower to get moving, and far to easily pushed
over) but he did make a few strong runs, and the header for the goal
was excellent. Jon Walters again looked lively and won a lot in the
air, but again he didn’t really deliver, except for a well-taken goal
which should give his confidence a boost.

Subs: JEFFERS showed some glimpses of class in his brief appearance,
and suggested he might be the type of player we need …if we can get
the ball to him in a decent position. HAYNES didn’t make much

The CROWD were quiet. The REFEREE pursued a bizarre and totally
unjustified vendetta against QPR’s corner-taker in the first half,
seemingly for not having the ball in the “D” (which it most certainly
was). He was way too officious at the start, but settled down, and
kept his cards in his pocket for the most part. QPR were, as ever,
quite inoffensive – Danny Baker once described them as a sort of
“courtesy team”, which I rather like.

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