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Ipswich Town 2 v 0 Bolton Wanderers
SkyBet Championship
Saturday, 16th September 2017 Kick-off 15:00
Ipswich Town 2-0 Bolton Wanderers - Match Report
Saturday, 16th Sep 2017 17:16

Second-half goals from Cole Skuse - his first in 29 months - and David McGoldrick saw Town to a 2-0 home victory over bottom-of-the-table Bolton Wanderers. After a first period in which chances were rare at either end, Skuse’s deflected strike - only his second goal in his four years at the club - put the Blues in front three minutes after the break, then McGoldrick added the second in the 89th minute.

The Blues returned to the 3-5-2 system in which they started the season with skipper Luke Chambers returning after his ankle injury and midfielder Tom Adeyemi making his first start for the Blues. However, Jonas Knudsen missed out having picked up an injury in training earlier in the week.

Skipper Chambers was joined in a back three by Jordan Spence and Dominic Iorfa with home debutant Callum Connolly at right wing-back and Myles Kenlock on the left. Bartosz Bialkowski was in goal.

Adeyemi was in central midfield alongside Cole Skuse with Grant Ward ahead of them, while David McGoldrick joined Joe Garner up front.

Martyn Waghorn and Flynn Downes dropped to the bench having started at QPR last week alongside Freddie Sears, Bersant Celina, who didn't train for several days this week due to a dead leg, and Tristan Nydam, who is back after suffering a knock while away with the England U19s.

After a scruffy start, the Blues hit the game’s first shot in the 11th minute. McGoldrick found Kenlock to his left on the edge of the area and the wing-back hit a right-footed shot which deflected behind. From the resultant corner, Garner and Bolton keeper Ben Alnwick both required treatment after a clash of heads.

Bolton, who had started in a 3-4-3 formation, threatened for the first time a minute later, Filipe Morais whipping over a dangerous freekick from the left which David Wheater was close to reaching before Garner eventually cleared.

On the quarter hour Iorfa won the ball just inside the Town half and brought it forward at pace but overhit his pass to McGoldrick to his right. The striker turned back to the on-loan Wolves man who fouled a Bolton defender as he looked to find space to shoot. At the other end, Noone hit a shot from the edge of the box over the bar.

The former Cardiff man struck an effort straight at Bialkowski when given space just outside the box on 21, then Kenlock worked himself an opportunity at the other end but his strike, again with his less-favoured right foot, was blocked.

Noone continued to be Bolton’s main threat, hitting a shot which deflected wide on 25 with Chambers doing well to get his head to the corner. McGoldrick eventually cleared by leaving a Wanderers player in his wake with a clever bit of skill on the edge of the box before almost finding Garner with a 40-yard cross-field pass but a defender cut it out.

Skuse made an important interception for the Blues on 27 after Chambers had misjudged a bouncing ball in the centre circle and surrendered possession to Wheater. The former England U21 international defender fed Madine, who looked to play skipper Jem Karacan in on goal but Skuse had tracked back and slid in to cut out his pass.

Bialkowski was forced into his first serious save of the game in the 33rd minute, the Pole pawing Madine’s snap shot from 25 yards out on the left behind at his near post.

The Blues weren’t too far away from opening the scoring in the 41st minute when Iorfa rose highest to meet a Ward corner from the left. The England U21 international nodded the ball into the ground but wide.

In the final scheduled minute of the half, the season-long loanee from Wolves won the ball in the air again, this time from a Ward freekick on the right - awarded after Antonee Robinson had clattered into Connolly’s ankle from behind - but his header was straight at Alnwick.

Following a Bolton corner, from which Connolly picked up another knock as he looked to clear, referee Andy Madley ended what had been an evenly balanced half.

It had been largely a battling midfield-dominated period of few chances with neither keeper particularly tested.

Town had looked at their most dangerous when McGoldrick got on the ball in the Bolton half, while Kenlock had been a threat on the left.

Connolly, who had suffered those knocks late in the half, was replaced by Celina ahead of the second half as the Blues moved to 4-4-2 with Iorfa moving to right-back and Ward to right midfield.

Two minutes after the restart the Blues took the lead via an unexpected source. After good work from Celina, McGoldrick cut the ball back and Skuse hit a 25-yard shot which deflected off Josh Cullen and beat Alnwick.

The former Bristol City man, whose only other Town goal in his 175 starts and one sub appearance came in the 3-1 home victory over Cardiff in April 2015, reeled away in celebration in front of the Sir Bobby Robson Stand, while Madine picked up a yellow card for dissent.

Bolton almost hit back immediately, Bialkowski saving low to his left from Karacan, before Celina and then Iorfa both put the Blues under pressure by needlessly surrendering possession in their own half.

There was a big scare for the Blues in the 59th minute when a cross from the right was dummied by Morais, which wrong-footed Iorfa leaving Madine and Wheater in space inside the area. As Town defenders got back to cover, Wheater hit a shot goalwards but Spence dived in to make a superb block.

Bolton threatened again a minute later, a ball over the top down the right channel somehow found Madine, who looped his shot over when he ought to have done better.

At the other end, McGoldrick broke towards goal rising a Wheater tackle when it appeared his touch had given the ball to the ex-Middlesbrough man and hit a low shot which Alnwick palmed behind.

On 67, after Iorfa had made an important interception from a Noone cross from the right, Celina made a pacy run at the Bolton defence and was cynically felled by Wheater, who was booked.

After on-loan Newcastle striker Adam Armstrong had replaced Mark Little, Robinson sent over a deep cross from the left which Madine headed well over at the far post.

A minute later, Adeyemi broke into the area on the right and cut the ball across the six-yard area but no one was on hand to add the final touch and it was turned behind at the far post.

As the half moved into its final scheduled quarter of an hour, McGoldrick found Celina on the left and the on-loan Manchester City man hit a shot which deflected behind.

Match Gallery: 7 photos

The Kosovo international took the resultant corner, the ball was cleared back to him and he cut in and hit a shot which Alnwick punched away.

On 78 Bolton made a double change, Aaron Wilbraham and Adam Le Fondre taking over from Madine and Morais.

Town might have doubled their lead a minute later when Garner knocked down Celina’s freekick from the left. With the goal gaping, McGoldrick couldn’t quite get on to the loose ball but it deflected out to Ward behind him, however, his shot was blocked.

In the 82 McGoldrick tricked his way into the box on the left with a trademark piece of sublime skill but blazed over. Burke was subsequently booked for a foul on Celina in the build-up.

Having got into the position he had, the Ireland international will feel he should have scored, but in the 89th minute the Blues number 10 sealed the three points.

Garner flicked on a ball down the middle, McGoldrick cleverly worked himself space before deftly beating Alnwick to notch his fourth goal of the season.

Downes replaced Ward, then McGoldrick made way to a standing ovation, Nydam taking over.

There was just time for Garner to pick up a booking before referee Madley confirmed the Blues’ third home Championship victory over the season.

On the strength of the second half Town deserved the three points having had chances to add to their lead before McGoldrick’s late second.

Skuse’s goal, which owed much to the deflection, came at the right time for the Blues, forcing Bolton to take the game to them and giving Town - and particularly Celina - the opportunity to counter-attack.

The Kosovan will be pleased with the impact he made having come on, the goal soon after half-time having added to his effectiveness, although he rather drifted in and out of the game and gave the ball away in dangerous areas on a couple of occasions.

Bolton, bottom without a win in their first eight Championship matches, will feel they should have got something out of the game, making little of the opportunities they had.

The match was watched by only 14,164, the lowest Portman Road crowd for a home game in the league since 13,212 attended Town's 1-0 victory over Swindon in October 1998.

The result sees the Blues move up to fifth, two points off the top with a game in hand on leaders Leeds, who lost 1-0 at Millwall today, who Town face at Elland Road next Saturday.

Town: Bialkowski, Spence, Chambers (c), Iorfa, Connolly (Celina 46), Skuse, Adeyemi, Ward (Downes 90), Kenlock, McGoldrick (Nydam 90), Garner. Unused: Gerken, Waghorn, Sears, Woolfenden.

Bolton: Alnwick, Wheater, Burke, Beevers, Little (Armstrong 70), Karacan (c), Cullen, Robinson, Noone, Madine (Wilbraham 78), Morais (Le Fondre 78). Unused: Howard, Taylor, Dervite, Pratley. Referee: Andy Madley (West Yorkshire). Att: 14,164 (Bolton: 337).

Photo: TWTD

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MVBlue added 17:19 - Sep 16
#first. Up the Town.

blue75 added 17:21 - Sep 16
Let's take the positive we won!! Thanks to Bart we kept a clean sheet really hoped McCarthy would attack Bolton, deep down I knew he'd do his normal bore the opposition to death nick a goal or two. Looking forward to hearing how great we played today. Compare that to any Ipswich vs Bolton game in the late 90's under Burley we should be embarrassed how low we've gone!!

yungblue added 17:21 - Sep 16
Very poor, boring and dull first half which was livened up by the exceptional Celina who is a real talent, along with McGoldrick who stepped it up to another gear in the second half and looked very impressive. Also a mention for Iorfa and Skuse who normally get some stick but today deserve all credit they deserve. Only negatives today for me, Garner didn't do enough, worked hard but never looked like scoring and Grant Ward I don't believe is good enough for us.

But all round very good second half performance with Celina and McGoldrick stand out performers.
2 points from next two games will be a good return. COYB!!!

Ipswichbusiness added 17:22 - Sep 16
A good win. Well done to all concerned, including MM.

prebsa added 17:23 - Sep 16
Didn't get to the match today but got to read along etc. Sounded like Bolton were very dangerous in the first half but we managed to hold them off and get the win that we eventually deserved.

Nice to see Celina come on. He has to start next game I believe. Well done skuse on what is another goal to add to his long list :/.

Look forward to seeing what other people though if the game who saw it and if we actually tried to play the game on our terms rather than letting the other team dominate like we did against QOR and Fulham

Normandyblue added 17:26 - Sep 16
Nice, bring on the Leeds, that will be a good test of where we are really at, love to beat them. Well done all.

Reuserscurtains added 17:31 - Sep 16
5 wins out of 7 league games. mick out men, don't bother coming on here tonight please. Enjoy it for what it is. 14,000 when we are a game in hand from top? Follow the town up or down? Not sure this is true. Well done, a win is a win.

rfretwell added 17:32 - Sep 16
Dire attendance, especially for a club that's so close to being top

StokeHigh97 added 17:33 - Sep 16
It's a win! a clean sheet: Not a great game: Adeyemi will get better once 100% match Fit! Celina has to start games: he is dangerous, creative & looks a real threat: considering its Leeds next he is ideal player to carry us forward & play a counter attacking style: we're no where near perfect but until we have everyone Fit I don't think we can judge till then: 2pts off top! game in hand every town fan would've taken that after 7 games: Leeds is a massive test next: the most disappointing thing today was! where has the crowd gone: lowest gate for 19 years! I've hated the way we play past 2 seasons but I'll always support my local team through thick & thin:

TimmyH added 17:33 - Sep 16
Personally feel the game was quite close and again a slice of luck on our side as Skuse's shot was deflected to find the net (it had to be really) to make the game more open and then we were probably the better side for the last 30 minutes or so. What you have to put in perspective is that Bolton are the bottom side for a reason they have only scored 4 goals and have a -12 goal difference already!...and we only just shaded it.

McG the man of the match for me today, tougher tests to come and let's face it the fixtures have been kind to us so far and the rub of the green!

warwickblue added 17:35 - Sep 16
Not a game to linger long in the memory, from an entertainment point of view but we have to be happy with the points. Mcgoldrick was the difference between two otherwise unexceptional teams. First game I'd been two since giving up my season ticket two years ago. I have to say I didn't see much to encourage me back any time soon.

BlueMachines added 17:41 - Sep 16
Firstly well done Town.

Rueserscurtains. Enjoy it for what it was. Another drab under par performance. Yes let's do that.

blueboy1981 added 17:45 - Sep 16
A win is a win against any opposition - but lets not pretend here - what chance have we got if we cannot beat such opposition as Bolton currently are ?

Why can't we be more positive at home, against such opposition ? I guess most of us know the answer to that .

Leeds will surely be an acid test.

3 points - happy Saturday night anyway.

jas0999 added 17:45 - Sep 16
A deserved win no doubt about that, but boy that first half was so boring and negative. Let's also be frank, Bolton are possibly the worst team at PR for some years. The win was always inenvitable, but overall unconvincing. Leeds and Sunderland will be a better gauge of where we are.

However, you can only beat what's in front of you. Well done for the win, but I simply can't understand the negative first half tactics. Very much doubt it will convince the stay away fans to return. But we are in the play offs so that's positive.

brian_a_mul added 17:47 - Sep 16
Good win and breaks the run of 2 defeats. This league is all about momentum and every game is difficult. We are beating the supposed weaker sides and building great momentum heading in to winter months. Well done Town and a great game to look forward to at elland road

chrismadrid added 17:48 - Sep 16
Well done control after a shaky start.Helped Chambo being back whereas McGoldrick,Ward and the promising Celina are a class apart.
Low crowd,is that a surprise bur a few wins now lads and it'll be all smiles and ooozing optimism.Bart MOM again in my opinion.Why isn't he Poland's Number 1.....?Anyone know?

martin587 added 17:58 - Sep 16
Another happy drive back home to Southend.I thought the first half was even,and Bart did save us a few times.
Second half much better,good to see Chambers back.Celina and D Mc,both outstanding for me.welcome points but we should put these games to bed by half time.Next week will be a very big test but I think we can turn them over providing Mick puts out the right team.
Wel done lads and MM.Still in the top six so let's try and stay there..🙏

runaround added 18:04 - Sep 16
An important victory following a couple of defeats but not a brilliant performance by any stretch of the imagination. I thought first half the formation didn't really work with Connolly & Kenlock both looking lost when on the ball at times plus Iorfa doing a credible Manu Thetis impersonation at times. Second half back to 442 we looked better. Celina was excellent & HAS to be a regular starter now.
Tomorrow is my daughters birthday and I took her today. It was the fourth match she's been to & first time she's seen us win plus her favourite player scored the second goal. It will be a good evening!!!!

TimmyH added 18:07 - Sep 16
That's a big ask @martin587 - Mick putting out the right team :), by the way I heard Leeds were dire against Millwall today.

casper16 added 18:13 - Sep 16
First game Ive been to this season. If this is the new positive attack minded Ipswich town then I am very disappointed. Different personnel but same uninspiring display. Bolton were awful but we managed to struggle especially in the first half. Didz was excellent second half & deserved his goal. Celina will cause panic in most defences but he is not a Macarthy man so will only be a bit part player. Don't think I will be rushing back. The reason the crowd is so low is because the level of entertainment is so low

braveblue added 18:15 - Sep 16
To all those wondering why people stay away. Poor entertainment. Simple.

StowTractorBoy added 18:16 - Sep 16
A win is a win and has to be earned whether a team is bottom or top. I don't go with this we should be beating certain teams as all teams in this division are capable of getting results. Look at Burton Albion today who beat Fulham a team everyone on here was waxing lyrical about a few weeks back. I concede today was not a great performance but I go to see my team win and if entertained with a brilliant display then so much the better. We still have not been able to field some of our best players so to be where we are is a bonus for us whoever we have played. Watching McGoldrick alone today was sufficient as he was class. On to Elland Road where we really will be tested.

blue75 added 18:18 - Sep 16
I'd just like to add if we're so good why is McCarthy's name not sung by the north stand?

cat added 18:29 - Sep 16
A Scrappy game glossed over by a rather flattering 2.0 score line, in a match which Bolton dominated on many occasion. A typical MM graft like performance with little flair or excitement, brought to life by a great first goal scored by our very own "Madame Fortuna" assisted by the prolific Skusey, which did lift the gloom somewhat, on an occasion where even an obscene amount of blue empty seats could'nt even brighten things up.
One massive positive was the half time arrival of Celina, now there's a player I'd willingly pay to see play, although he made effort to track back, this was half hearted and will probably not please our very defensive minded Dino, going forward though, WOW, different class. A worthwhile visit to PR based only on the fact we won, Dids, Celina and Kenlock deserve the plaudits, but little else IMO!!
Our mighty impressive points tally so far has well exceeded expectation levels, based on today's performance I'm scratching my nut wondering how that's been achieved, but hey, let's enjoy it!!
Bring on Dirty Leeds, cause I will be there!!!

Blue_Moses added 18:30 - Sep 16
Terrible game, Bolton were in it until the 89th minute and with a better striker would have won (same ae Brentford). Take the 3 points and pray against Leeds.

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