Royle Full of Praise
Saturday, 8th Feb 2003 19:19
Town manager Joe Royle was full of praise for his side after they staged a superb comeback in one of the finest games seen at Portman Road for some while
Royle said his team were deservedly pleased with their achievement: "Our players were jumping around in the dressing room afterwards as though we'd won the cup.
"The two kids were brilliant in wide positions. They were outstanding. Bent has exceptional pace and a cool head in front of goal.
"I've never been so happy than when the transfer window closed last week and they were both still with us.
The Town boss also singled out Marcus Bent whose second half contribution was hugely influential: "Bent had his best 45 minutes since his operation.
Royle says that the decision to bring on Bent for Jim Magilton was half tactical and half due to a back injury picked up by the veteran midfielder.
Royle was less impressed with Pablo Couñago after his first half red card: "Pablo flicked out and you cannot raise your hand.
"I cannot argue with the referee. I wasn't at all happy with Pablo when I heard exactly what had happened at half-time and now he faces a three-match ban."
Sheffield United manager Neil Warnock was understandably unhappy with his side's defeat: "I am absolutely distraught. We've lost a game that professionally we should have won. That's what disappoints me.
"When we scored our second goal our players thought it was the end of the game. You do that at your peril.
"You can't take anything away from Ipswich. Their crowd had a massive influence and there was a great atmosphere and teams reduced to ten men regroup and can make it exceptionally difficult.
"Ipswich are a super club and we may be meeting them again this season in the play-offs, you never know. I wonder why Ipswich are not on top of the league when they can produce a performance like this.
"We lost two matches on the trot way back in November and then had an undefeated run. Now we must do that again but it won't be easy."
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