The View From Churchmans

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


Ipswich Town 2 Millwall 0

Not the most exciting game, but one we’d have struggled to finish off last
year, and all the more satisfying for that. Millwall were a hard side, and
only just stayed the right side of being unfairly so (apart from that git
Wise, who becomes more of an obnoxious cheating ******* every season). That
said, their defence was really solid, and it was an achievement to break it
down …almost nobody else has so far.

Another impressive display from the midfield, another confidently solid
performance at the heart of the defence, and Benty’s just getting better and
better up front. While we can stay injury- and suspension-free, this squad
is going to continue to surprise us all. With so many departures, what’s the
key? It can only be two marvellous signings who have glued the whole thing
together and allowed players like Miller and Bent to express themselves, and
given Jim less to rant on about and more time to play football. The
difference in confidence in players such as Naylor and Wilnis is terrific to

If there are any weak points it’s an overdependence on Benty (I can’t see
any of the other three strikers giving us the same edge at the moment), a
potential weakness at fullback (with one player the wrong side and the other
not in his supposed best position), and a lack of width coming forward
(although with four playing fairly narrow we’re dominating the middle of the
park). But you can’t have everything, and you certainly don’t need it in
this division. Another clean sheet, and confidence in abundance in every
part of the ground. Can’t be bad.

(And I took Cherry Hinton Blue Jnr, aged 3-and-a-bit, to his first match,
and of course he now thinks every match builds up to a climactic Ipswich
win. Oh, and we’re always top of the table …aren’t we?)

Some ratings:
(1-5 for effort, 1-5 for achievement)

DAVIS 6 (3/3): Quiet afternoon, a bit hesitant to come off his line on one
occasion leading to an altercation with De Vos, but came out quickly to make
an important punch later on.

DIALLO 6 (3/3), DE VOS 7 (3/4), NAYLOR 7 (3/4), WILNIS 6 (3/3): A very tidy
performance defensively right across the park, and they’re looking very
confident too. De Vos really has made a huge difference, not only with his
own imposing displays; his presence must be the reason that Bam-Bam has
matured so quickly as a central defender this season after a year looking
like he just wasn’t quite going to make the grade.

MILLER 7 (4/3), MAGILTON 8 (4/4), HORLOCK 7 (4/3), WESTLAKE 4 (2/2):
Some really sweet, simple interchanges all afternoon reminded me of Burley’s
promotion-winning team, but the ball-winning is even better, particularly
today from Miller and Magilton. I’d love to see the stats on how many
tackles we won, it was terrific. Now we just need to make more of the dead
balls, which are consistently leading nowhere.

KUQI 5 (3/2), BENT 8 (4/4): Darren’s on fire at the moment, and richly
deserved his goal. Shefki was relatively quiet, but his contribution
shouldn’t be underestimated against this imposing and solid Millwall
defence; he kept them busy enough to allow Darren to shine with his
movement, and although the goals only went in after he’d gone, I still think
he was unlucky to be substituted.

Subs: COUNAGO looked as lightweight as ever, and trudged around like he’d
been on the park all day rather than providing a fresh pair of legs. But you
can’t argue with an assist and a goal, can you? Infuriating.

The REFEREE decided he wasn’t going to book anyone and stuck to it despite
at least half a dozen incidents which would have seen yellow on another day
(mainly from Millwall). Irritating.

The CROWD were quiet again, until the goals. Millwall’s supporters were the
usual foul-mouthed morons. You might be about to get a very brief taste of
European football, guys, but we’re top of the table! Woo yay!

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