Delaney: Hard Work Paying Off
Saturday, 25th Feb 2012 09:18
Damien Delaney has confirmed that Town’s much-improved recent defensive displays can be attributed to the amount of hard work that has been done on the training ground.
Fit-again Delaney, now back in the side alongside Tommy Smith, has played his part in keeping successive clean sheets – but no one needs to remind him that Ipswich’s record of 57 goals conceded remains the worst in the Championship.
Delaney, 30, said: “We have done a hell of a lot of work on defending as a team and I can’t deny it was necessary, especially when we had shipped so many goals. We’ve all played in teams that have conceded, say, 40 to 45 goals in a season but in our case it was the end of January and that was crazy.
“Things have improved and hopefully it will continue. In our last two games, at Portsmouth and at home to Cardiff, we looked pretty solid. We’re not going to stop everything but even against Cardiff – the way they started I thought it was going to be a very long afternoon – we were comfortable.
“Going back to last season there were times when I was thinking early on ‘We’re going to get murdered here’. At one stage in the game against Norwich I was counting how many players we had on the pitch and that’s not a lie. I was wondering ‘Have two lads gone in or something?’
“There’s a huge difference now. We’ve worked hard in training and we’ve had loads of meetings in which players have had their say about what they thought should be happening. The manager took it all on board.”
The real key to Town’s improvement, Delaney feels, is that they are defending better as a team, with players other than those in the back four taking more responsibility.
He added: “Just as it’s not always the defence’s fault that the team can’t keep a clean sheet, it’s not always the forwards’ fault that we are not scoring enough goals.
“Football is the ultimate team game and the buck doesn’t stop with any one player. If people like Jay Emmanuel-Thomas can run an extra 15 yards and stop a cross coming into the box it stands to reason that we are not going to concede as many goals.
“If JET and others can stop half the crosses, obviously it means there’s a 50 per cent less chance of us conceding goals from crosses. It’s the same up front – midfield men need to make the runs and take defenders away to leave room for Michael Chopra.
“It has all been coming together nicely and no heads have been dropping. Even when players have found they are not getting regular games their attitude has been great. They have left their disappointment behind and been very supportive of the lads in the side.”
Photos: Action Images
Get a free £25 matched bet on Ipswich Town v Huddersfield Town (or other matches) by opening a new account at William Hill. Place an initial bet of a minimum of £5 and William Hill will match that bet up to £25. You must enter the promotional code "F25" when signing up as a new customer.
Please report offensive, libellous or inappropriate posts by using the links provided.
You need to login in order to post your comments
Blogs 212 bloggers
Fortuna Favours the Brave by stevieiriswattii
So, who is actually happy with style of football we are playing? Do people really believe we will get promoted playing like this?
Are We The Fans Willing to Start Again? by BackTheBlues
So we’re at the end of September, a pretty average start in terms of points, but on the back of a relatively promising transfer window.
Are You Moaning or Giving Your Opinion? by ipswich134
Someone said I am entitled to an opinion, what is an opinion? If an opinion is what you see and feel, or for something to be done in another way - please say it! However, do keep in mind what you say.
The Fruits of Stability by SpiritOfJohn
Another busy midweek of Championship football has gone by and once more we start to look forward to Saturday with a mixture of hope and trepidation in one of the most ‘bonkers’ leagues in the world.
Reading's Penalties and How They Show Glaring Flaws in the Laws of the Game by BlueRaider
For a while know I have been thinking that there is something badly wrong with the laws of football, and this season's clampdown by officials at corners and freekicks has only clarified this further.
Ipswich Town Polls
[ Vote here ]