Varney and Woods were impressive and held the ball up brilliantly. Defence tighter and apart from a couple of panic type clearances and I didn't think we looked like we were going to concede.
Watford v Ipswich Town Your Report added by Cakeman at 17:33:15 Very well thought out victory. MM basically nullified all what Watford had to offer. I must say I thought Varney was outstanding and was a little surprised that he was subbed but no harm done with Sears' pace the telling factor in the end. A cool finish from Chaplow who did well to pick up the pace of the game so quickly.
Ipswich Town v Bolton Wanderers Your Report added by RomfordBlue at 08:14:42 Could have been 3 - 3 at the end but for very poor finishing. Both sides were poor at the front and vunerable at the back. For once, our mid-field stole the show - all though it wasn't much of a show to steal! There is no way this team can survive in the Premiership, if indeed they can manage to get there. So, in fact, the team are playing for their own unemployment! Not much of an incentive.
We simply had to win. Brentford and Wolves got strong results. And even Norwich pulled a point from the jaws of defeat.
I have to say I am much happier with our style and shape of late. Yes, I think we are fatigued and lack 2 or 3 quality players to really threaten promotion and to put in a great performance, but we are passing the ball and stretching play, and if we can repair our confidence and maybe get McGoldrick back then maybe there's hope.
Tonight 5 players really influenced the game for me, Sears, Skuse, Bru, Tabb and Mings. Many other players had good moments and indeed Chambers had a strong game at right back - seemingly instructed to push further forward.
Bolton were no push overs and had a golden chance via the lively Rochinha. But our passing and chances deserved a goal in the first half. Sears missed a great chance when pressure and a mistake saw him through on goal. Sadly he flashed wide. But why he stood out for me tonight was that although his head initially dropped after the miss, he got back into the game and really pressured Bolton in possession but also showed moments of real quality and a reading of the game. I was disappointed when Varney came on, but I think Mick got that right, Varney put the work in. Sadly he does lack that cutting edge quality and I wonder where we'd be if Marcus had paid the money for someone of a higher level to push the forwards.
Micks other substitution probably won us the game. Bruuuuuuu almost stole the man of the match banner from Skuse tonight despite coming on jn the second half. Our young Mauritian just really grabbed hold of the game and he brought quality control and passing, but also tenacious tackling and hassling. A highlight being a good shot across goal which he created with running.
Speaking of running and shots - step forward Cole Skuse. Oh my word had our erstwhile holding midfielder been on the ready-brek? He had a glow and swagger about him tonight not seen for some time. Much is discussed about how Skuse doesn't work with Hyam, or he doesn't work with Bru. But frankly if Cole played like that every week he'd play well with my mum. He just had his engine going, but also he was running forward and also HAVING SHOTS. 3 at least! 2 in quick succession. My worry is that Skuse now won't perform like that again for months. But good on him.
Bishop had moments earlier when he was getting in between the lines. But he faded and it was right to substitute him. Our England U19 seemed to get a knock and his confidence dropped.
Mings was great. Couple of good wing runs tonight, he's not hitting the heights of earlier in the season, when he's hit the byline and then provide great service, but still he was running and stretching Bolton. It will be a sad day when his inevitable departure comes to pass. He is that quality that the team lacks in certain areas.
Now finally to Tabb – or TABBY as Mick and the Naked Football show would say. He was being set up to be the scape goat tonight. Heaven knows the abuse that was being lined up if we failed to get the 3 points this evening. And yes of course he is really lacking some of the flare and pace his wider role required, but he really did put a shift in, had some runs (ending in weak shot of course). But I was pleased he got his fortuitous goal and the plaudits from his team mates.
Watford will be a much sterner test than Bolton. All players will need to be on their game and Murphy will need to get his cutting edge and close control back. He has been our season and when he isn’t dominating defences our attack get a bit lost. Too many times tonight we didn’t really know how to open up Bolton. The answer came via Mings and Bru and at times Skuse, run at the defence stretch them and get it wide to Sears or Mings or have a go. As always it’s not tocket science football. And I just hope we can get our confidence going, keep the ball on the ground and use the obvious quality of Sears, Murphy, Bru, Skuse and Mings to threaten teams more.
Smith and Berra were better tonight, we were still too open and there were some errors but both made important interceptions and readings of the game.
Now to the night itself – I think the North Stand played a part tonight. It was a woeful attendance for our league position, and also some of the more entertaining home performances against Brum and Wednesday. But I think the songs kept going for longer periods and I do think it lifted the boys, even with the negative of kicking towards the North in the first period.
Anyway onwards and upwards. If we can get 4 points from the next 2 it will be a big statement and might get us into form at just the right.
Ipswich Town v Bolton Wanderers Your Report added by rickw at 22:31:53 Played poorly but won, at least Mick changed the system when it was clear 442 wasn't working, we went 352 before half time, and then 433 after. Skuse was the best player for us (and Bru when he came on) Sears was always running, however it was the poorest I've seen Murphy all season - he didn't win any headers and didn't seem to know what else to do ...
Ipswich Town v Bolton Wanderers Your Report added by buxton199 at 22:22:08 Bolton could easily have 3 , but we got the 3 points , still not seen nothing that stands out from bishop, and feel maybe shoulda cashed In on Mings when had the chance !!!! Loved Varneys work rate when he came on and he is so good in the air!!! Would have liked to have seen Chris wood on for Murphy , we disn't seem to get Murphy in the game enough
Middlesbrough v Ipswich Town Your Report added by gippeswyk at 19:08:13 I went to the game and Town started well and created chances in the first half but didn't take them. Had a good chance to make it 2-2 at the break and the result might have been different but the post got in the way. Boro were dangerous in attack and our defence looked shaky. We couldn't defend two short corners right in front of us away fans. Schoolboy defending. Mings was on another planet. Tommy and Chambers couldn't cope. Parr, Skuse and Murphy put in decent performances. Bishop and Tabb couldn't take a decent corner/free kick between them. Wood is reminds me of Salmon - can't win a header and no ball control. Bart should have saved the 4th goal.
Middlesbrough v Ipswich Town Your Report added by carsey at 16:53:02 i have said it all elsewhere on this site. Nervous error prone back 5 particularly Smith and Mings. Midfield better today but no goal threat from any of them. Murphy held up well but Sears for all his running unable to cause a threat because everything was in the air or over the top. Team set was typical McCarthy with players out of position again and the wrong formation. @Boro were not that much better than us accept Bamford vs Smith which was really annoying considering Bamford shouldn't have been on the pitch after his assault on Berra in the first half.
Middlesbrough v Ipswich Town Your Report added by Pilgrimblue at 16:27:12 That must be the first time we've had most possession but lost so easily! Smith was dreadful and Mings not much better plus Berra was so close to giving away penalties/free kicks. While we did have possession we didn't seem to know what to do with it which was the main difference between the sides. Too many of our players are so slow. Take for example Tabb v Adomah. While Tabb had plenty of the ball he was so slow in moving it on and in one instance when he was in central position with nobody challenging he took it out wide. Adomah would have gone for goal or set up for teammate. Will MM do anything? Not likely as he'll focus on their good play. He wont move Chambers in or replace Smith with Clarke. He wont drop Tabb for pace of Stewart or Connolly. One highlight for me was Parr so put him with Skuse who played well and then have some pace out wide.
Middlesbrough v Ipswich Town Your Report added by harmitfc at 16:14:19 "That was easy" a Boro support said on the walk back from the Riverside to the town centre. He was right but only because Town weren't bothered about getting three points today and Boro were. Middlesbrough were average at best and we should have been home and dry in the first half. Lots of huff and puff but no end result.
I felt that we had the options and more creativity in the middle third with Bish and Skuse playing well together; but we relied too heavily on Parr (playing strangly as a right winger) cutting in and feeding Murphy. At the back Berra and Smith seemed to lack any cohesion and look as if the have never met each other, let alone should be playing in a partnership. Chambo was industrious and showed some nice positioning. Even though we were 2-1 going in at half time, I thought we still had enough about us to come away with something.
The second half came and we were a different team. Far from full of options and creativity we were full of misplaced passes, stratospherically high through balls and the tactical positioning of a team used to playing at 10 o'clock on a Sunday morning down on Dog Muck Park. The pace of Bamford and Adomah showed how woefully slow we are at the back. Bamford exposed us every time we pushed forward and there was no-one to keep up. This possibly is the job that should have been done by Mings. But don't even get me started on him - ineffective and too laid back that some might call him lazy...
I don't get to many games (living just outside Middlesbrough) but when I do I like to see a team that has desire and belief right through until the end. Whether they were shellshocked from Gerken's early injury, the goal from that incident or the fact that Middlesbrough is so damn far away we lost the necessary will to win before the game really got started.
Top 2 is now a distant dream and I want desperately to believe that Top 6 isn't either . If we play like we did in the second half again it will be. There is hope in Parr, Bish and Murph but the rest of the team need to buck there ideas up. Like most of us Town fans I'm disappointed but still hopeful.