The View From Churchmans

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


Ipswich Town 0 Derby Co 1

Oh no, no, no, this was a bit rough. But with the pro-Ipswich media hype
reaching silly proportions (how do the players find time to train in between
interviews and newspaper columns?) and of course the Manager of the Month
Kiss Of Death, well, what else were we expecting?

I don’t think we should worry about having lost, but we should worry about
not having scored against a tediously efficient Derby side. Sometimes teams
which come for a nil-nil manage to fluke a goal, sometimes they don’t. This
time they did, and we can’t complain really. At least the pressure of being
the team which scores in every game is off, although it’s disappointing to
lose our 100% record against the current bottom-half sides.

What went wrong is that too many players had an off-day simultaneously. It
happens. So long as it’s not terminal, and there’s no reason why any of the
culprits shouldn’t turn it around, I don’t think we have too much to worry
about. At least Derby got what they wanted by playing for it. Other clubs
(e.g West Ham) have got that by less footballing oriented methods.

Burley’s gone from being the manager who never changes anything to a manager
who wants to play a different formation every 15 minutes. It may have gone a
little too far today, there was certainly a communication problem at times.
Wilnis/McGreal/Venus/HH (first half) and Bramble/McGreal/Venus/HH (second
half) managed to play in ten (count ’em) positions between them, two each
for McGreal, Venus and HH, and three for the hapless Titus. Can’t have
helped. But it’s better than not making the changes when they’re necessary,
so we shouldn’t complain too loudly.

Branagan 7 – looks like the goal took a deflection, so (if so) can’t be
blamed, otherwise quite competent, despite Derby only having a miserable
three attempts on goal. And competent is all we ask.

Wilnis 5 – another disappointing performance (that’s the majority of the
last half dozen games now) and another booking, although it was for a last
ditch tackle which may well have been necessary.

McGreal 8 – probably the only player who had a genuinely good game, covered
for the awful Bramble when necessary in the second half, was always cool,
and can’t be blamed for the miss at the end, at least he bothered to push
through that channel to get on the end of it, something Wright and Reuser
had been failing to do.

Venus 6 – looked better than HH had been when switched out wide; although
not as athletic or exciting, knew his limitations and kept things calm. A
few too many passes astray, but there was much worse before us.

HH 6 – got involved in several misplaced passes (which may have been the
fault of Clapham of Johnson) but looked reasonably secure, and always
promised something bounding forward

Wright 5 – really didn’t get involved, and somehow failed to tuck into that
position behind (and supporting) players going into the opponents’ half,
something he does so well. Perhaps it was because our midfield were pressed
so deeply back.

Holland 6 – not really sharp, faultless effort as ever, but didn’t really
put his mark on the midfield and was pressed back too much. Barely got
forward. Who the hell allowed Magilton to waste that free kick towards the
end? 20,000 Town fans screaming: “No! Not Jim!” should have been joined by
the captain.

Magilton 7 – Frustrating that Jim was always there or thereabouts, but
didn’t really seem to do much with the space he made himself. Did nothing
really creative, although had a lot of the ball.

Clapham 4 – A real stinker. Tried hard, but nothing came off, wasted several
good opportunities to get the ball in the box, and was involved in an
endless succession of misplaced passes. One Jamie (and the rest of us) will
want to forget.

Johnson 4 – What was the thinking behind playing Johnno when the whole team
has been geared up to playing with one skilful striker (Stewart) and one
“presence” striker (Scowcroft or Naylor)? Johnno himself says he doesn’t
expect to get in the side other than as a replacement for Stewart. The two
of them together (apart from the fact they seem to have no understanding)
are just not right for the way we use our strikers to hold the ball up. And
Johnno was shown up in every aspect this afternoon. He simply hasn’t been
able to step up a gear this season like most of the players, and we can’t
afford to let him work on it in the full glare of the first team. Nobody
would be happier than me to see him turn it on. But it simply isn’t there.

Stewart 6 – Tried far too hard to make up for the disjointed nature of the
play around him. Marcus was here, there and everywhere, but nobody seemed to
know where he’d pop up next. Needed to get his head down and be a bit more


Bramble (for Wilnis at half-time) 3 – probably the worst performance by
anyone in a Town shirt this season. Couldn’t control the ball, couldn’t pass
the ball… Titus was hopeless. Moved out of the danger area urgently a few
minutes after coming on, then up front more just to get him away from being
any more of a disaster. Oh dear.

Scowcroft (for Johnson straight after half-time) 6 – didn’t achieve much,
but was responsible for the improved performance up front without a doubt.
Let’s have no more mucking around George, Scowie has to start.

Reuser (for Wright later on) 5 – hardly did anything.

Ref – should have stopped the time wasting. Poor.
Crowd – dismayed.

Reply to “Ipswich Town 0 Derby Co 1”

Follow us on Twitter!

Site Search