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Ipswich Town 0 v 2 Middlesbrough
SkyBet League One
Tuesday, 2nd October 2018 Kick-off 19:45
Hurst: You Can’t Give Goals Away Against a Side Like Boro
Tuesday, 2nd Oct 2018 22:48

Boss Paul Hurst admitted the damage was done when the Blues gifted Middlesbrough their two early goals during the 2-0 home defeat to the Teessiders, Mo Besic and Stewart Downing scoring in the 12th and 16th minutes.

“You’ve all witnessed that, you don’t need to be a football manager or have played to understand that,” Hurst said.

“Everyone can see, there’s no getting away from it and people might not like it but it doesn’t matter what system you’re playing or anything like that, you can’t give goals away and especially against a team like Middlesbrough, who have got quality in the ranks and give up very few goals.”

Hurst felt his team got better after the break: “I actually thought we caused them some problems and realistically should have got on the scoresheet at some point, but obviously a lot of that was in the second period.

“But I felt we did start the game [well], the lads were clearly getting on the ball and wanted it.

“But when a goal goes in it gives them a lift and it dents our confidence and then the second was when it really changed the whole atmosphere in the ground.

“It was a difficult night for everybody, but particularly as a player because you’ve got to show a lot of mental strength and character to keep wanting to get on the ball and not fear making another mistake."

Asked if he can do anything about the individual errors which have plagued winless Town’s season, he said: “To a degree, the only thing you can do is tell the players not to get the ball in certain areas and not take any risks whatsoever.

“To be honest, I don’t think the lead up to the second, it’s not really a risky situation, I don’t know quite what happened in truth.

“But you can basically just not want it and lump it up the pitch. However, I think where we’re at in terms of options at the top end of the pitch, we can’t do that and very few teams can do that against a team like Middlesbrough with the physicality that they’ve got and the height and the dominance that they have in the air.

“So I think you have to try and play against them to have joy, and we showed that at times.

“But the frustration is that you’re going up against a good team and then you give them two goals.

“And that makes a task extremely difficult and it just changes everything. If that had been the second half and there had been a similar-ish performance in the first half and we’d have got beat, it would have been frustrating still, but a lot of people would be a lot happier.

“But that first half, the goals made it extremely difficult but you’ve got to show enough character to get through.”

Has he got the players with that character in the squad? “The second half would suggest we do but we can’t just play for maybe 45 minutes and perhaps 10 minutes of the first half or whatever. It’s got to be a lot more than that.

“Maybe Boro took their foot off the gas, I’m not going to dispute anything like that, but we certainly won more second balls, we competed, we looked like we ran harder in the second half and that’s got to be right from the word go.

“We’re not good enough just to play for 45 minutes, that’s very evident. So, unfortunately all we can do is go to the next one. We can’t replay that game, we can’t get that first half back. Move on to the next game.

He says he’s looking for people to step up when Town travel to Swansea on Saturday: “We’ve got to haven’t we? I’ve watched some of their games.

“They are a team that look like they’ve changed quite drastically in terms of their confidence levels from the game that was on TV quite early in the season at Birmingham to then watching them in the game against QPR.

“They're back to what most of us would associate a Swansea team with in terms of moving the ball and having a lot of possession and making the opposition run around and chase. And that’s something we’re going to have to try and counter come the weekend.”

He added: “We know it’s a very difficult league anyway. I think everyone’s aware of that and have been for the past many seasons.

“But the situation that we find ourselves in, certainly every game’s going to be difficult. If we had a cup game against lower opposition it would still be approached with some trepidation at the minute because that’s the situation we find ourselves in.

“But there’s only ourselves that can get ourselves out of it, we’re not going to get any help. We’ve got to stand up and fight and find every ounce of energy and desire to try and change what we’re currently going through.”

Middlesbrough boss Tony Pulis felt his team put on as good a display as they have all season during the first 30 minutes in which they effectively won the game.

"The first half an hour was as good as we've played all season, we moved the ball quickly," he said.

"It was lovely having Mo back to that tempo that he played for us last year. When he plays that way he makes other people play.

"The big disappointment was that we got sloppy at 2-0. You can't do that, you have got to keep that tempo up.

"It's our third game on the bounce away from home and that's tough. The team has done absolutely fantastic. I'm really pleased but's 11 games. Another five or six and then we can take a view."

Meanwhile, Pulis paid tribute to Blues legend Kevin Beattie, who died last month, aged 64.

“What a great player, an unbelievable player, an absolute colossus of a player," he said.

"He played in what was probably the greatest or one of the greatest eras that Ipswich have ever had and he was just phenomenal. Everything that you’d want from a player he had.

“I spoke to him and was around him a couple of times and he was a fun-loving lad as well.

“I spoke to John Wark before the game and that team was a phenomenal team, unbelievable and that was before the two Dutch lads joined.

“And when the two Dutch lads came it just took another step and another level. That era, cor blimey, I’ll bet the club wish they could get that again.”

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FromIpswichToPhoenix added 22:49 - Oct 2
Wait, I thought 2 - 0 was a dangerous score... I'm confused.

Daleyitfc added 22:51 - Oct 2
Off you pop, Uriah.

RegencyBlue added 22:51 - Oct 2
We got better in the second half because Middlesbrough realised they had the game won and sat back!

TonyHumesIpswich added 22:52 - Oct 2
They went 2-0 up and then watched us do very little with the ball for the rest of the game. Amazing how people are going on about how well we played the second half!! The game was already over!!!

TheSelkirk added 22:53 - Oct 2
Seems he always talks a lot whilst saying very little of any real substance....

OwainG1992 added 22:53 - Oct 2
It's funny when he said 2-0 a dangerous score line this past weekend I chuckled and thought it won't be when we are losing by that. Stupid mistakes. Could have been at least 3 or 4 for Boro had Hugill brought his shooting boots.
Edwards looked decent. Chalobah and Donacian with some lovely deliveries and at best 1 person in the box!! It's ridiculous why don't players bust a gut. Nice pass from Dozzell to Sears which nobody else would see in our team.
If it carries on like this we may well have to just accept league 1 football next season.

Sm00411 added 22:56 - Oct 2
Sure Paul, we can't blame you for individual defensive errors. But what's your excuse for us not scoring?

How can we win a game of football at home if we don't score a goal?

Lightningboy added 22:58 - Oct 2
It’s not working Paul & it doesn’t even look like working,that’s the worrying could get away with 1-0 wins in league 1 but this is the dhampionship where scoring goals is what matters..we don’t even look like getting shots on target let alone scoring let alone winning.

Used the word once tonight already & it’s a word i’ve been looking for for what you have done to this football club over the last couple of months - RECKLESS.

TimmyH added 23:02 - Oct 2
Well we can and we did...and we'll keep doing it. Not good enough!

algarvefan added 23:03 - Oct 2


bostonusablue added 23:04 - Oct 2
Why hasn’t he resigned yet? Enough is enough.

itfchorry added 23:06 - Oct 2
Such a shame that it hasn't worked out -

We all wanted you to succeed - Sadly the job
may be to much of an ask.

We all know that this can't continue

WhoisJimmyJuan added 23:08 - Oct 2
He looked a little tired tonight Mr Hurst I thought. And as the floodlights flickered off I thought I saw McCarthy's smile for a split second like the skull you see in Norman Bates' smile at the end.

44_not_out added 23:08 - Oct 2
He is just passionless on the touch line. Pulis was non stop, giving information, giving b@ll0ckings when needed, praising good play etc etc.

He just shows nothing. He is so dull, no wonder the players are not motivated at the start.

If you having any respect for this great club, please resign NOW

mulbarton67 added 23:09 - Oct 2
I want to rage but don’t know where to start... I think my biggest doubt is that the few experienced pro’s we have aren’t showing up and that makes me wonder if they believe in Hurst. Sears is one of the little championship experience we have left and thought he staked a claim tonight. We can cut out mistakes at the back but I still don’t see enough of a threat of goals in our squad or formation at the other end to get us out of trouble. Hurst has to take responsibility for that. Good to see Andre’s class again.

MickMillsTash added 23:18 - Oct 2
Their defence gets paid 100K+/wk our defence 30K-40K - mirrored all over the pitch - we get what we pay for.
We're not good enough, the players know it, Hurst knows it.
we need to somehow limp to Xmas - Hope Evans will invest and get lucky with some new signings- probably with a new manager

ArnieM added 23:27 - Oct 2
FAO Mr Hurst .... and we can’t score goals with just one up front and a crap central midfielder like Nolan, you need to change things tactically cos it clearly isn’t working!

smurfsareblue added 23:31 - Oct 2
I hear loads of people saying well we have to give the manager time. OK I get that but I cannot accept carrying on with a manager who after 11 games has not shown the team, owner or supporters that he has any idea of hist best starting 11, who stubbornly refuses to use any of the under 23 team who are top of the league and most of all who cannot demonstrate that after 11 games his methods are working. I have no issues with being winless after 11 if the football is getting better and there is hope that we can start winning games in the future. If anything we are getting worse than we were at the start of the season. PH you sound like a nice guy but you do not convince me you have any passion. You do not convince me you can give the players any confidence and you do not convince me that when January comes you can actually find a player any better than what we have. Sorry mate but I think it is time you fell on your sword.

aas1010 added 23:50 - Oct 2
Just go!!!

Henrietta_R_Hippo added 00:25 - Oct 3
Sport Scientific Paul says, and not for the first time mind you!, that he is quote "Looking for people to step up" ...

Well so am I Paul, so am I... but hey fundamentally that worn-out "joke" is all on & stops with you I'm afraid!

Firstly you yes yes you Mr. Hurts signed all these unproven-at-this-level blokes and in the process FORGOT to buy 2-3 experienced players also, the latter being of a both more passing-skilled, agile and just overall improving nature ... hence The 3 Undroppable Proper Blokes from MM's jurrasic days remain exactly that under Mr. Hurst = The 3 Undroppable Proper Blokes! Even though all 3 of them, but especially Captain Calamity, has more 'barely mediocre', to poorish to directly COSTLY games than they have good or simply OVERALL positively contributing ones! ---- And you want or expect rather this mostly out of their depth ragtag assembly to even just be capable of quote "stepping up" do you now??? LOL

Alas you still get the starting personnel mostly wrong, so just to pick one example in addition to them 'Undroppables', please enlighten me as to why LIONEL Graham is in there again... and thus ahead in the picking order of several other creative players the majority of fans would much rather see start???

Secondly, ehhh well I hate to break it to you Paul "2-0 is a dangerous scoreline" Hurst cause privately you are indeed probably a very likable & well-mannered fella, but with regard to your beyond lame obsession with the these blokes seriously anemic "LONE STRIKER" fetish, you have just about reached the point where you according to one of the most renowned uber brains in human history Albert E... is certifiable "INSANE"!

I.E. "Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results"

(If not directly insane then at the very least utterly clueless, mixed in with an big splash of needless stubbornness!)

What was it now just to recite the last 3 contest:
2 'on target' (coming quite late too I recall) against crappy Bolton who had 10 men for nearly an hour;
3 'on target' against the Juggernaut (NOT! although they on that day came out HEAVILY on top in many stat categories incl. Total Shots) known as Birmingham;
And today we had to wait to the 42 minute to have just a real attempt on goal (was not 'on target' though!)... and as Boro CLEARLY settled into 2nd gear in the last 45 we were "allowed" another handful attempts but oh only one winded up being 'on target'!

And yet I will bet 200 £ that Hurst, if still in the job much longer, is not done with his wasteful & visible-from.-outer-space anemic "Lone Striker" fetish.

Yep I sign of by repeating my half-time outcry: Evans dearest, you really hit the managerial 'JACKPOT' this time didn't you, you tigha$$ed nitwit???
So sell up ASAP please, cause you running this once proud club straight into the ground!

karl1426 added 00:48 - Oct 3
I thought 2-0 is a dangerous score! But don’t see any danger happening!

hyperbrit added 01:30 - Oct 3 least Jewel had the guts to resign!!

clint_eastwood added 03:14 - Oct 3
Most of us would judge a manager after 10 league games. Well, time's up. Bottom of the table, 10 league games without a win. No excuses now. Let's call a spade a spade. YOU'RE JUST NOT GOOD ENOUGH AT THIS LEVEL, PAUL! ........sorry, next please. Yes, football is a cruel game. That's how it is these days.

shakytown added 03:38 - Oct 3
Hurst and Doig need to pack their bags and toddle back to league one or we will be there next season. Not one of their signings is even close to championship level and we are doomed unless drastic action is taken immediately.

Westy added 07:04 - Oct 3
How predictable this headline was - 'you can't give away two goals against a team like Boro'. We know that so please don't insult my intelligence by saying it. What I want to know is what you are going to do about it. Sadly, I think nothing as you don't know what to do and are out of your depth at this level. All the early season optimism has evaporated as has the atmosphere. I can see nothing about us that will get us out of this situation.

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