Sears: Same Old Story
Sunday, 1st Mar 2020 11:23
Goalscorer Freddie Sears admitted it was the “same old story” as the Blues were beaten 2-1 at Blackpool on Saturday and that the last three or four months haven't been good enough.
Town were on top for the most part but failed to take their chances at one and and conceded twice at the other with Joe Nuttall netting the winner in the final moments, seconds after Sears had missed an opportunity at the other end.
“We played really well again, same old story - chances not taken, balls going in the other net,” Sears said.
“We’ve got to defend better, but at the same time we’ve had chances again, we’ve played really well and it’s just disappointing at the minute.”
From a personal perspective it was a bittersweet afternoon for the 30-year-old, who scored his first goal since January 2019 on his first league start since recovering from his ACL injury.
“Obviously personally I’m really happy, 90 minutes, first goal of the season and the first start and feeling good out there.
“The other side of it, we lost the game so it doesn’t really feel like too much at the minute. But for me personally it’s another one ticked off, first league start, first league goal and now it’s about getting results.”
The former West Ham trainee says the first league start was a major step for him: “It is, I think I’ve been ready for a while now, I’ve been training well and it’s just the opportunity. I’ve been given the opportunity today and taken it.”
But Sears admitted he was gutted not to take his late opportunity for a second just prior to Blackpool’s winner.
“Yes, it was a good chance, obviously it’s the difference between winning and losing and I feel like I could have let the boys down but at the same time we should never have conceded that goal either,” he reflected.
“So a disappointing afternoon, it’s obviously hard to talk now and [find] what you want to say after a defeat but you’ve got to stay positive and we’ve got two more games coming up this week.”
Why does he believe Town aren’t taking their chances? “I’m not sure, keepers are pulling off good saves, we’re not missing the target on purpose or it’s not going miles over the bar. At the end the keeper’s still managed to pull off a good save. You get that bit of luck sometimes but it’s just not happening for us at the minute.”
Asked whether, given that they’re dominating and controlling games, the players feel like they’re a decent team not getting the results their performances deserve at present, Sears responded: “If you’re a decent team you’re top of the league, that’s football. We’re doing alright but it’s not good enough at the minute.”
Town, who are now five points off the play-offs and nine from the top two, have 10 games remaining and Sears says it's obvious what's needed from those fixtures.
“We’ve got to win as many games as we can, I keep hearing ‘play-offs, top two’, but we’ve got to start winning games, that’s the reality. We’ll see from there,” he said.
Having gone from top of the table and talking about winning the title, the Blues are now in great danger of missing out on even the play-offs and Sears admits it’s been a frustrating season.
“It’s tough to talk and say what’s going on and what’s going wrong but I said to you a few weeks ago, in May if we look back we’re not in the play-offs or we’re not where we want to be it’ll be a season wasted, in my opinion,” he added.
“We don’t want to look back and say what could have been and what should have been.
“We had a great start and the last three or four months have not been good enough. I think it’s four wins in 23 and that’s not good enough for any level for Ipswich Town.”
Regarding the mood in the dressing room, he added: “Obviously, losing games you’re not going to be happy. Frustrated, disappointed, deflated today, playing reasonably well and coming away with the same result. But what can you do? We’ve got 10 massive games left and it can change very quickly in a week.”
Sears had praise for 18-year-old Armando Dobra, who made a strong impression when coming off the bench in the second half, and feels the Albanian U19 international is ready for a first league start.
“Every day in training, that’s what he does, he brings something different to the team,” the ex-Colchester striker said.
“He’s been unlucky, he’s probably been knocking at the door to play. I think [league debutant striker] Tyreece [Simpson] was brilliant as well at 18. Those two looked really good when coming on, so positives to take into the next few games.”
Could someone fresh such as those two be the spark the Blues need to turn things around? “Yes, maybe, hopefully. We’ll see. There’s still a long way to go and it’s time to step up now.”
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