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Aston Villa 2 v 1 Ipswich Town
SkyBet Championship
Saturday, 26th January 2019 Kick-off 15:00
Aston Villa 2-1 Ipswich Town - Match Report
Saturday, 26th Jan 2019 17:28

Freddie Sears netted his sixth goal of the season as the Blues were beaten 2-1 at Aston Villa but could count themselves unlucky not to have claimed a point after a late fightback in which Trevoh Chalobah struck the post and they were denied a penalty. Tammy Abraham put the Villans in front in the sixth minute, then doubled the lead via a hugely controversial penalty on 61. Tommy Elphick appeared to handle a goalbound Collin Quaner effort inside the box before Sears pulled one back on 76 and then Chalobah and Town were denied by the woodwork.

Town boss Paul Lambert made three changes on his return to the club he managed between 2012 and 2015 with Bartosz Bialkowski, Myles Kenlock and Flynn Downes all starting.

Bialkowski returned in goal for Dean Gerken, who dropped to the bench, while Kenlock came in for Callum Elder at left-back with the Australian also among the subs.

At the centre of the defence James Collins, facing his old club, was at centre-half alongside Luke Chambers. Downes took his place in a three-man midfield with Cole Skuse and Chalobah.

Will Keane started as the central striker with Alan Judge on the left and Sears on the right with Quaner also moving to the bench.

Villa made two changes with Glenn Whelan and Anwar El Ghazi coming into the team for Birkir Bjarnason, who was missing from the 18, and Yannick Bolasie, whose loan from Everton has been cut short, while Mile Jedinak was back on the bench after injury. Ex-Blues midfielder Conor Hourihane started.

The home side dominated possession in the early stages with Town unable to get out of their own half. On four, John McGinn blazed over with a shot from just outside the area.

But two minutes later, Villa took the lead. Hourihane whipped a low freekick - conceded after Chalobah had sent El Ghazi tumbling - in from the left, Bialkowski hesitated on his line and Abraham got ahead of the Blues’ defenders to volley his 18th goal of the season into the roof of the net from four yards out.

With rain beginning fall steadily, Villa immediately began looking for a second with the Blues repeatedly getting themselves into difficulties when trying to play out from the back.

However, on 10, Keane caught James Chester in possession midway inside the Villa half and brought the ball forward before eventually finding Judge, but the Irishman’s low shot lacked power and Lovre Kalinic in the Villa goal was able to claim comfortably.

Town began to see more of the ball but on 14 Kenlock surrendered possession to McGinn, pulled the Scotland international back and was shown the afternoon’s first yellow card.

The Blues continued to see a lot of the ball but mainly in unthreatening areas while still looking very shaky and inviting trouble when trying to pass it out from their own box.

On 22 Chalobah was halted in his tracks by Chester has he burst into the area with Town starting to make some headway.

Five minutes later, El Ghazi was yellow-carded for a late challenge on Collins after the Welshman had ended a Villa break on the edge of the Blues box.

The home side began to take control again and just after the half-hour mark they had the ball in the net for a second time, however, with the linesman’s flag having been raised.

McGinn had got away from Downes on the right and hit a low shot from the edge of the box which Bialkowski did well to bat away from goal to his left. Albert Adomah, who scored twice in last year’s corresponding fixture, reached it first and slammed into the net but having strayed offside.

The Blues were again finding themselves under pressure and on 33 Alan Hutton crossed from the right. McGinn’s first effort was blocked, then his second scuffed through to Bialkowski.

Two minutes later Hourihane shot from distance and Bialkowski scampered away to his left to claim at the second attempt ahead of Adomah.

Abraham will feel he should have scored his second of the afternoon in the 36th minute when he was found in space on the left of the box by Adomah. With time to pick his spot, the on-loan Chelsea man struck his effort too close to Bialkowski, who palmed away to his left.

Town successfully defended a freekick taken from the same position as Villa’s earlier goal on 38 and broke quickly, Chalobah finding Sears on the right. The Blues’ on-loan Chelsea youngster eventually hit a shot from the edge of the box but was unable to get any power on it and the effort was blocked.

Two minutes later, McGinn hit a low strike from distance which Bialkowski was unable to hold on to but Collins was there first to stab behind. On 42 Hourihane hit a low 20-yard freekick through the wall which Bialkowski was able to claim with ease.

In the final scheduled minute before the break Keane again won the ball after some Villa hesitancy but was eventually crowded out, however, the ball was cleared straight to Chalobah, who hit a low shot which failed to trouble Kalinic.

Town were probably fortunate to be just the single goal down with the half having largely been one-way traffic with Villa moving the ball around slickly and confidently and having a number of opportunities to increase their lead.

The Blues had started to see more of the ball midway through the half but rarely in dangerous areas and Kalinic in the Villa goal had had a comfortable first 45 minutes, even if his backline had shown an occasional tendency to gift the ball in dangerous areas, something Town might well have profited from.

Town, who needed to up their game significantly in the second half if they were to avoid their sixth successive away defeat, were under the cosh from the off after the break.

With the persistent rain if anything now falling even harder, Abraham headed a 47th minute Adomah cross from the right straight at Bialkowski who again failed to hold on. Once more Collins was first to it but the ex-Villa man scuffed away but the danger was eventually cleared.

Two minutes later, Sears shot over from the edge of the Villa box, then on 51 El Ghazi blasted well over from distance for the Midlanders.

Villa came close to doubling their lead in the 53rd minute when McGinn diverted Hutton’s cross from the right only just over the bar after the Blues had made heavy weather of getting the ball away from danger.

Town had started to see more of the ball again but still without seriously threatening when Villa were awarded a penalty in the 61st minute, the fourth the Blues have conceded in five league games from which the home side increased their lead.

A corner from the right looked like it was going nowhere at the back of the box where McGinn went to ground as Judge looked to turn away from him, get on the ball and take it out of the box.

The recent signing looked aghast at what was yet another soft penalty decision and the Town players argued long and hard with referee Keith Stroud to no avail.

Abraham confidently beat Bialkowski from the spot to hit the 19-goal mark and give the scoreline an all-to-familiar look for the 1,092-strong travelling Blues support.

Match Gallery: 3 photos

Town swapped Keane for Quaner, a change they had been looking to make since before the goal, but found themselves under more and more pressure from a Villa side by now with their tails well and truly up.

On 65 Bialkowski turned an Abraham cross over his bar, before Ahmed Elmohamady took over from Adomah for the home side.

Town almost pulled a goal back in the 73rd minute when Downes lofted a pass over the Villa backline for Quaner. The on-loan Huddersfield man took the ball round the keeper but Tommy Elphick slid in to block with what looked to be a hand. However, as had often been the case throughout the afternoon, referee Stroud’s decision went against the Blues’ significant protests.

Three minutes later, their five-game away goal drought did come to an end. Judge allowed a ball from the left to run past him just outside the box to Downes but behind the midfielder, who turned it back to Sears. The ex-West Ham man took a touch before smashing a brilliant strike past Kalinic to his left and into the top corner of the net.

Sears’s sixth goal of the season roused the previously quietened Town support and put more of a spring in the players’ step. Neil Taylor was forced to concede a corner on the right and from the flag-kick Pennington headed over.

The Blues came within a whisker of levelling in the 80th minute when Judge whipped over a freekick from the right and Chalobah flicked a header across goal and off the far post.

A minute later Quaner went down looking in some pain after a McGinn challenge but after treatment was able to carry on.

Hourihane was booked for a foul on Chalobah as Town broke, then on 85 Bialkowski saved low down to his left from Abraham from the edge of the box as the striker looked for his hat-trick.

Abraham thought he had grabbed that third of the afternoon in the 88th minute only to find Bialkowski in his way. The Chelsea loanee was found in space at the far post by a low ball from the left but the Polish international somehow threw himself across goal to block superbly.

McGinn shot low but weakly from distance with Villa putting the Blues under pressure as the fourth official indicated four additional minutes. Deep in injury time Kayden Jackson took over from Chalobah.

Aside from a thwarted Quaner run, Town were unable to find an equaliser in the remaining minutes and succumbed to another away defeat, although ultimately one from which they were unfortunate not to claim a point.

While Villa might well have been out of sight earlier on in the game, once they were two goals down the Blues battled back - with Quaner making a big impact after coming on - and were unlucky that Chalobah’s header struck the post and referee Stroud waved away what looked to be valid protests regarding Elphick’s handball, just as the official did with a similar incident at Blackburn last week.

Probably even more galling was the earlier penalty award to Villa, which video evidence showed was as soft as they come with McGinn’s fall to ground having little to do with any contact made by Judge.

Elsewhere, Rotherham were beaten 2-1 at home by Leeds so the gap remains seven points but with Bolton hosting Reading on Tuesday.

Town’s next opportunity to make up some ground to the sides above them is next Saturday when Sheffield Wednesday are at Portman Road.

Aston Villa: Kalinic, Taylor, Chester, Whelan (Kodjia 78), McGinn, Hourihane, Abraham, Hutton, El Ghazi (Jedinak 85), Elphick, Adomah (Elmohamady 68). Unused: Steer, Davis, Hause, O’Hare.

Town: Bialkowski, Pennington, Chambers, Collins, Kenlock, Chalobah (Jackson 90), Skuse, Downes, Judge, Sears, Keane (Quaner 62). Unused: Gerken, Nolan, Bishop, Nsiala, Elder. Referee: Keith Stroud (Hampshire). Att: 33,653 (Town: 1,092).

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thechangingman added 17:29 - Jan 26
TWTD post-match bingo. Score a point for each of the following mentioned in this thread:
• The referee cost us this one
• It’s Evan’s fault
• If anyone can turn this around, it’s Lambert
• We’re down this time
• We can still turn this around
• It’s Mick McCarthy’s fault
• Well done to the travelling fans
• We were the better side
• It’s Paul Hurst’s fault
• We have to keep positive
• Be careful what you wish for
• We have to get a result next week
• League One will be the end of Town
• League One will be the beginning of the re-building
• It was never a penalty
• This is the worst team I’ve seen in X years
• We have to keep hoping
• It’s time to give up hoping
Have fun everyone – this is the only fun you’re getting today…

Kesgraveblue92 added 17:29 - Jan 26
When you are at the bottom of the table you never seem to get the run of the ball. However, we are our own worst enemy giving away silly fouls in and around the area resulting in free kicks, penalties and ultimately goals. In 4 of the last 5 games we have given teams a goal head start with a penalty and that is something we cannot afford to do. It comes down to quality in the end, the opposition are just better and faster and we cannot keep up. We keep coming up short (nearly) every week, although it is not for the want of trying.

grubbyoik added 17:32 - Jan 26
Why can’t we play 442 and find a place in midfield for Bishop. 2-0 down and we use only 2 subs. Our midfield is the problem.

runningout added 17:32 - Jan 26
think we started to play a bit late..

Jammstar added 17:33 - Jan 26
If there's one thing to take from this season, it's the fact we now have a manager who absolutely lives and breathes ITFC, we're going to need that level of passion from a manager in league one. COYB

cat added 17:34 - Jan 26
Not a surprising result today, the only real shock was that we scored. Business as usual for Bart, sloppy free kicks conceded (as per) and the usual inability to deal with them, and of course the nailed on dodgy ref. Lose next game then it’s game over for me, and that’s coming from probably one of the more optimistic ITFC fans on here. Enjoy your night guys, no blabbing in beers please! (Lol)

martin587 added 17:36 - Jan 26
Once again two silly mistakes cost us the game.Having said that the effort was very good and should have come away with a point.Again a penalty denied and hit the post at the end.
Still in with a shout and until it’s impossible I’m confident we can escape.
Once again good support from us away fans.

TimmyH added 17:36 - Jan 26
Most eye opening thing about the result is that we've scored an away goal for the first time in 540+ minutes which says it all, before everybody starts moaning about how unlucky we were/are and yes that was a very very soft penalty we didn't deserve to get anything from the game from what I've heard Villa easily could have scored 4, so once again we come up short in a league where most teams can get something on their day (just look at Swansea and Wigan when they played them) other than generally us.

Let's move on and Sheff Wednesday is another big game (as we keep saying of late).


Henrietta_R_Hippo added 17:40 - Jan 26
Paul "Public Relation Maestro" Lambert is a lot of things.... [hyperbole] positive things mainly.... but he is not a "WINNER" folks!!!

10 defeats in 15 league games here, or just 9 very MEAGER points out of a possible lofty 45. And let's certainly not forget the additionally embarrassing loss to A.S. in the FA Cup. Especially embarrassing since A.S. has just 1 point in 6 og their other latest games sandwiched in between meeting ITFC, and has not only let in 13 goals but have also been shutout in unfathomable 5 of those defeats!!!.... And thus on a whole in P.L's latest two managerial stints [Stoke of course being the other last year] he has only won just 4 of his latest 30 games in the manager seat.... or in other words a hilariously & unmistakably PISS-POOR 13.3 winning percent!!!

Ohhh and then there is the "little" [read: gigantic imho!] matter of P.L. also going out his way to broadly direct really ANY, repeat ANY, kind of blame away, for the long-lasting misfortunes of ITFC, from Marvlelous Marcus [read: utterly football-clueless & largely football-indifferent Marcus Evans!].... And not only this, but P.L has furthermore actually eagerly praised him repeatedly as an owner of a modern day football club too??? !!!

To summarize, yes yes P.L. is a tremendous Likable Bloke, with nice sounding visions and all, and who of course **all-compassing** also masters to "talk the talk".... but ehmmm OTHERWISE, as in just about any OTHER football aspect here at Town:


And now you 'happy-clappy' and/or 'credulous' lot :-) :-), please do commence to hit that luvly luvly down-vote button lol...

blueboy1981 added 17:44 - Jan 26
...... not one to criticise Referees, simply because there is no point - however, the standard of Refereeing in general, right now, is the worst I have seen in half a century of being involved in Football.

It seriously needs investigating, it is so poor.

As for today's result - not much, if anything more than expected. Some of Lamberts decisions are quite baffling to be honest, but I understand his need to assess, prove, and implement as time goes on with the task in hand.
Constantly not creative enough, with the situation as it currently is, we need wins, nothing less - therefore why we are so tentative in our approach to games I have to say I do not understand.
What have we got to loose by going for a win from the start - we can only lose, which we do anyway almost without exception.

One final shot - Freddie is a middle player, how much more proof does anyone need ? - out wide he's virtually redundant, and out of the game.

Oh well - it is what it is.


BlueParadigm added 17:45 - Jan 26
Hey ‘thechangingman’ - I have a line ...... BINGO!

planetblue_2011 added 17:45 - Jan 26
So disappointing should of at least got a point today. Can’t believe we gave away another stupid pen & then we didn’t get one up the other end. Sounds like their player handled it on the line. It could of been 1-1 or 2-2 if I look at it like that, or maybe even won it with Chalobah hitting the post. It’s not going our way at all, no luck What so ever but we are still giving stupid goals away & too many pens. Only good thing Rotherham lost & Quaner sounded decent when he come on.
Still think it’s too late but if we can get another couple of wins from somewhere & others around us are still loose then you never know. The team could gel or is it to late!!

backwaywhen added 17:47 - Jan 26
Plum .......

jas0999 added 17:47 - Jan 26
You can’t start playing once two nil down. The penalty certainly an iffy one - but equally AV could and should have been even further ahead long before then.

Unfortunately we are nowhere near good enough. PL has strengthened us slightly - but with players who were happy to join us in our current predicament- by no means the better players. Unlikely even with the signings we will be good enough against most other teams.

The club is in a mess. Seven consequative away defeats in all competitions is dire, unacceptable and a sign of how bad things are. Home form is marginally better.

Shame it has come to this.

blueboy1981 added 17:50 - Jan 26
Special mention to you 'travelling fans' again - you each deserve a medal.

Just make sure you all behave at Carrot Road, and leave any bad behaviour to non real ITFC 'so called' Supporters.

Suffolkboy added 17:55 - Jan 26
Looks like a consistent run of ‘bad luck ‘ continues but you do make your own : it’s time we realised ‘no ones actually on our side ‘ SO do everything with conviction !
Haven’t seen the game , but are we striking the ball cleanly and strongly or ‘caressing ‘ it goalwards ( Sadly we got rid of real strikers !) ?
It’s very frustrating to read and to digest for weekend : but it must be equally so for the players and Management team ,
So COYB ,we’ll still give you everything in support !
PS KS isn’t really up to the job as most of us recognise ; soft and unrealistic & it seems increasingly out of touch !Controversial ?

RobsonWark added 18:02 - Jan 26
where was Chambers for that first goal...he was watching the Aston Villa player putting it in rather than defending! Get that useless so called footballer out of our club!!!!

barrystedmunds added 18:04 - Jan 26
Saturday nights suck!

IpswichToon added 18:08 - Jan 26
I keep watching Villas penalty over and over and can’t for the life of me see how the ref would ever even consider that a penatly. Then up the other end their player clear as day blocks the ball from going in with his arm - not given!? That should have been a penalty and a red card.

Let’s not forget the game at Portman Road against Villa was when Edun got sent off for two yellow cards when nobody even expected a foul. Another example of great refereeing.

atty added 18:09 - Jan 26
Bang average and boring last season. Hurst appointment welcomed. Let go 3 players responsible for most of goals and one of best defenders. Left with 7 fit players with Championship experience. Hurst brings in Lge 1 and Lge 2 players.Pennington and Chabolah pluses. Performances woeful. Hurst sacked. Lambert comes in with just over half a season left, and realises (didn’t we all) that we needed experienced players to come in, in January. Did so, and they are playing to the exclusion of Hursts lower league recruits. So Lambert has to get a patch up ream to play together
when we are bottom, and seven points adrift. Is it any wonder we are struggling? We arre, generally speaking, playing better. We will get better as the season goes on, but I doubt enter it will be enough.If tragically l am right, we have to build a team,yet again, in the summer.However, PL has made it clear the he wants to build a team that is ours, a big change in strategy.I do hope ME backs him, so we can really see a team being put together that will develope and get us back into the Championship, and evolve and grow into one that gives us a real chance of getting back into the PL.He did it with that lot up the road, and yes l know the Championship is getting tougher.
The alternative doesn’t bear thinking about. Think Coventry.

RobsonWark added 18:09 - Jan 26
Henrietta_R_Hippo I don't agree with you there. I think Paul Lambert is the man to take us us forward only problem with him is he continues to pick Chmabers like all the other managers before him. Why can't they see how useless he is football wise. But he talks the talk. The good thing for us is that his contract is up at the end of the season. Hopefully that won't be renewed and we will have a much stronger defence :)

Nobbysnuts added 18:11 - Jan 26
Well at least I'm not pi##ed OFF anymore.we're going down and I've accepted it.

Northstandveteran added 18:13 - Jan 26
Can I assume that you are getting a little bored of reading the posts on here changingman?

If it helps, I blame the Romans.

RobsonWark added 18:17 - Jan 26
We are going down if we keep playing Chambers

ivegottheblues added 18:22 - Jan 26
Blueboy - I agree with all you say except referee-ing wise you must remember Clive Thomas - the worst,most anti-Ipswich ref of all time.

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