Please log in or register. Registered visitors get fewer ads.
Ipswich Town 1-4 West Ham United
Tuesday, 25th Aug 2020 15:53

Sebastien Haller netted a hat-trick as West Ham beat the Blues 4-1 at Portman Road in a behind closed doors friendly. The Frenchman put the Hammers in front just before the break, added a second on the hour before Freddie Sears pulled one back for the Blues and Tomas Soucek made it 3-1. Haller completed his hat-trick on 63 as the teams scored four goals in five minutes.

Andre Dozzell, Flynn Downes and Teddy Bishop were the Blues midfield three as Town are lined up in their increasingly familiar 4-3-3 system.

Skipper Luke Chambers at centre-half alongside Toto Nsiala with Janoi Donacien and Stephen Ward the full-backs. Tomas Holy was in goal.

Up front, Gwion Edwards was on the right with ex-Hammer Freddie Sears on the left and Aaron Drinan in the centre.

James Norwood, Oli Hawkins and James Wilson again all missed out but Emyr Huws was among the subs having travelled without being involved at Spurs on Saturday.

Norwood, who is continuing his rehabilitation after his groin operation, and Wilson, who has been out with a calf problem, were expected to start training yesterday. Prior to joining the Blues last Monday Hawkins had been training on his own.

Kane Vincent-Young, Luke Woolfenden, Kayden Jackson, Cole Skuse and Myles Kenlock were notable absentees from the squad.

West Ham, who were also in action at Wycombe Wanderers this afternoon, included ex-Blue Aaron Cresswell, who skippered, as well as Jack Wilshere, Darren Randolph and Felipe Anderson, who was among their scorers when they beat Town 2-1 in another friendly two years ago. Manager David Moyes was at Portman Road rather than Adams Park.

The Town team emerged from their temporary dressing room in the Sir Bobby Robson Suite, walking down the steps of the empty Sir Alf Ramsey Stand, the visitors having previously emerged from the tunnel.

There was a chance for the Blues within the opening seconds when a clearance deflected into the path of Drinan inside the area but the Irish U21 international’s strike was blocked.

Ward sent it back in and another Drinan attempt was blocked by Fabian Balbuena before Randolph in the Hammers goal claimed.

Town caused themselves significant problems in the opening minutes as they tried to pass out from the back and in the fifth minute Andriy Yarmolenko was found in space at the far post but Chambers was able to push him wide and then stab the ball out for a corner.

From the flag-kick keeper Holy punched uncertainly and Donacien helped it out for a goal-kick off a West Ham player.

Drinan’s low shot was saved by Randolph on 10, then Grady Diangana took the ball past the advancing Holy on the right of the Blues’ area but took it out of play.

On 14, with Town already having shown far more threat than they did at Tottenham on Saturday, Ward found Bishop on the left of the box and the midfielder skipped past two men before cutting across the six-yard box but with no Blues player there to add the final touch.

West Ham should have been in front a minute later when Haller, a scorer on his last pre-season visit to Portman Road as the Blues drew 1-1 with Utrecht in 2015, found himself unmarked eight yards out after Chambers had failed to deal with a long ball but the Frenchman somehow hit the ball too close to Holy, who saved.

Penalty area action became rarer, although West Ham were looking a threat on the break whenever Town lost the ball in the opposition’s half.

On 29 the Hammers appealed for a penalty as the ball appeared to catch Dozzell on the arm as it came in from the right, the midfielder colliding with Donacien as a number of players landed in a heap. Referee Neil Hair waved away penalty protests.

Two minutes later, Downes, a West Ham fan, stuck a powerful effort which Randolph pawed behind. From Sears’s deep corner from the left Ward nodded into the Irish international keeper’s hands.

The visitors again should have taken the lead in the 38th minute when Haller was played in behind the Blues backline but again was unable to beat the advancing Holy, who blocked. Moments later Idris El Mizouni replaced Edwards, who walked straight off to the dressing room.

On 43, with Town starting to look more confident when breaking forward, Bishop took the ball on into the West Ham half and with options either side of him hit a shot which flew over Randolph’s crossbar.

The Hammers took the lead in controversial circumstances a minute later. The ball looked to have gone out of play on the left and the Town players had stopped as Diangana squeezed it across for Haller to turn home from a few feet.

The Blues players protested towards the linesman, but to no avail and soon afterwards the referee’s whistle ended a half in which Town had been more competitive than they had been in the opening period at Tottenham on Saturday.

The Hammers should have been ahead prior to their late goal with Haller having missed a couple of very good chances, while the Blues had had one or two opportunities of their own, albeit less clear cut.

Neither side made a change ahead of the second half, unusually for pre-season, with the Hammers making the early running.

On 51 El Mizouni, playing on the right of the front three, not his preferred role, made a clever run on the left of the box and looked to find Ward, who had broken forward, but the ball was diverted behind.

Two minutes later, Yarmolenko was found at the far post on the right by Haller’s backheel from where the Ukrainian shot against the outside of the post.

Town swapped Dozzell, Downes and Bishop, who had been far from out-classed by their Premier League counterparts, for Jon Nolan, Emyr Huws and Alan Judge in the 59th minute and soon after the visitors extended their lead.

Diangana was again the creator crossing for Haller to slam his second of the afternoon into the net.

The two-goal lead didn’t last for long with Sears pulling one back against his old club having been found in space on the left of the box by Huws following a powerful run forward from halfway on 61.

However, the Hammers quickly made it 3-1 as Holy failed to reach a cross from the right from Conor Coventry allowing Soucek to nod in at the far post. The Czech keeper won’t want to see that too many times.

Almost immediately it was 4-1 as Town were made to pay for playing themselves into trouble in and around their own area, as they have done throughout pre-season, skipper Chambers turning away from Diangana inside his own area not realising Haller was behind him and the Frenchman gleefully stabbed home his third goal from six yards.

The goal deluge abated and on 74 the Blues made three substitutions, David Cornell, Corrie Ndaba and Tommy Smith taking over from Holy, Ward and Chambers.

On 78 Huws did well to stop a West Ham attack in the box - the Blues again having given the ball away inside their own half - but collided Donacien and Town were fortunate the Welshman’s clearance cannoned off Haller to Cornell.

Ben Folami replaced scorer Sears for the final seven scheduled minutes and on 86 hit a low shot from a tight angle which Randolph claimed comfortably.

In the final scheduled minute, Nolan was found at the far post but Randolph was out quickly to block with no time for further action.

Most of the post-match discussion will be about the ease with which West Ham scored their goals - and they might well have scored more in the first period - with the fourth particularly poor.

While manager Paul Lambert has encouraged his side to pass out from the back, they regularly play themselves into trouble and inevitably a Premier League side was going to make them pay eventually.

There were more positives before the break, although Idris El Mizouni put in another bright cameo from the bench.

Town: Holy (Cornell 74), Donacien, Chambers (c) (Ndaba 74), Nsiala, Ward (Smith 74), Dozzell (Nolan 59), Downes (Huws 59), Bishop (Judge 59), Edwards (El Mizouni 38), Sears (Folami 83), Drinan.

West Ham: Randolph, Cresswell (c), Balbuena, Yarmolenko, Anderson, Coventry, Alese (Cardoso 56), Wilshere, Haller, Soucek (Kemp 74), Diangana (Lewis 74). Unused: Jimenez, Odubeko. Referee: Neil Hair.

Photo: Matchday Images

Please report offensive, libellous or inappropriate posts by using the links provided.

Pencilpete added 15:55 - Aug 25
I'd make 4 changes for next Saturday

Huws instead of Dozzell

KVY instead of Donacien

Jackson or norwood instead of Drinan

a Paper bag instead of Luke Chambers


BlueArrow added 15:58 - Aug 25
Sorry to say it Luke but time to hang those boots up. I know it was only a friendly and premier opposition but you looked like a knackered cart horse

midastouch added 15:58 - Aug 25
A starting line up with Chambers, Nsiala and Donacien didn't exactly inspire me with confidence that we could keep a clean sheet today.

PortmanTerrorist added 15:58 - Aug 25
Some bright sparks toward the end but so much to worry about with players still being played out of position further forward, and a defence and keepers that look bereft of confidence, shape and maybe ability.

Enough players in the building to put out a better performing 11, but we did not see them today.

PS please play Freddie up top. Looks on it, but once again wasted out wide, despite his goal

TimmyH added 16:03 - Aug 25
Not surprising defeat though somewhat more of an even contest than Saturday. Saw most of the game on free streaming and looked like Chambers was running in mud half the time and amateur stuff from our boys whether the ball went out or not for their first.

2 defeats even though it's against Premier opposition ain't going to do a lot for the confidence considering our losing theme continues (other than beating Colchester which seems about our level now days).

leftie1972 added 16:03 - Aug 25
So we need two new CB’s then to augment Wilson/Woolfenden. If we don’t invest in the defence we simply will not make it out of L1.

Bluearmy71 added 16:04 - Aug 25
Photo caption...............To moot the celebrations of the West Ham players Town players start a chorus of........Y.M.C.A

ringwoodblue added 16:04 - Aug 25
Didn’t expect to beat the Hammers but more worrying is the quality of the starting line up today particularly in defence which I’m sure any L1 team would score goals against week in, week out. Also proves that the quality players we do have are quite small in number - KVY, Woolfie, Downes, Dobra and Jackson (when he gets the service). The rest are poor-average.

Hope Lambert learned something from these friendlies cos I certainly haven’t!

Counagoal added 16:04 - Aug 25
I think our players best suit a 442 diamond. We haven’t got the wide players to play a 433 with Edwards and Dobra being the only natural wingers that I can think of. With that formation in mind I would play

2 of: Sears/Jackson/Norwood/Hawkins
1 of: Lankester/Dobra/El Mizouni/Judge
3 of: Dozzell/ Nolan / huws / downes / skuse / bishop
We have plenty of depth and quality for league one and don’t get
Me started on chambers!

Skip73 added 16:05 - Aug 25
Cue the "it was a great performance, so proud, and overall a good day" crap from manager and players.

Michael101 added 16:10 - Aug 25
has edwards picked up a injury?? Seems early to be subed.

raycrawfordswig added 16:16 - Aug 25
Sir Bobby Robsons statue is quicker and more alert than Chambers.

Cloddyseedbed added 16:20 - Aug 25
Goalkeepers didn't inspire me with confidence but with Donacien, Nsiala and Chambers in front of them what do you expect. These 3 players are not good enough and weren't last year either. Chambers, it's time to end your playing days I'm afraid. Far better when Ndaba came on, he looks like he can play and should get better. Donacien adds nothing going forward. Far better after half time and midfield was changed. Huws inspirational after just coming on with a powerful forward run that we need him to do more often to set up Sears for his goal. Freddy is so right footed and played out wide on the left. Fine if you cut in but defenders get wise. He's wasted out there, if you want a wide left player find one, Sears isn't it. Despite rave reports after the Colchester game, Drinan is not the player to get us up. Lambert has the same problems as last year. Too many players of the same standard and I don't think he will know his strongest team on the friendlies played so far. Do you want to get into the starting 11 this season boys?? Too many of them were showing the same attutude as last season for me.......I know it's only a friendly but I'm worried we haven't shaken off last years mental attitude in games of not expected to win and will settle for 2nd best. Glad I watched it though, helps me make my mind up about certain players but not so sure Lambert is ruthless enough to want to change things. Oh and for Christ sake stop trying to play out from the back. We will concede every game if we don't through errors, they aren't good enough to implement it. You can coach them all you like!

londontractorboy57 added 16:23 - Aug 25
looking forward to the start of the Thurlow Nunn premier league that is more than i can say for the last three seasons of Championship lge 1 at Portman Rd .
still the Mikma haters got what they wished for or did they??

tractorboybig added 16:28 - Aug 25
Sears is the only class act we have...norwood- jackson are crap BUT will the scottish dickhead see it?l

chepstowblue added 16:28 - Aug 25
Ive only been watching football for 48yrs and would love to know what the benefits are of playing out from the back. If Barca and Man City look f@#king stupid doing it then why are we attempting to?! I'd have walked out had I paid money to witness that fourth goal. As an 8yr old id have got the cane....nowadays its applauded. Just welly it up the park and stop worrying about bring labelled 'long ball'. Football snobbery at its worst. Other than that there were some bright moments going forward and enough industry in midfield. Defending like that will still see home defeats to Rochdale,Accrington and Northampton tho !!

dirtydingusmagee added 16:30 - Aug 25
. This game was meaningless ,just an exercise , but it did nothing to indicate anything has changed from previous season [or one before] .

TimmyH added 16:30 - Aug 25
Yawn!...your needle is well and truly stuck londontractorboy and yes we know you're going to watch amateur league football (no doubt it won't stop you gabbing on about your love for MM on here) - the world has been going through some changes this year but you haven't.

dukey44 added 16:34 - Aug 25
All I can say is Chambers is horrendous as our captain 🤣🤣going to be a long season with him in the starting 11....

Umros added 16:37 - Aug 25
Didn’t we try play out at start of last season and it didn’t work. We simply don’t have the quality to do this, equally the lumping hopelessly upfield isn’t great surely we can try play through our midfield? In reality we just don’t have the quality and Goalkeeping appears to be an area we aren’t comfortable with with seemingly either or making regular mistakes. No looking too great to be honest.

Sixto6 added 16:44 - Aug 25
Downes needs to be made captain - good man chambers should be retired (but due to salary cap we could make him club captain so he can still think he’s Billy big balls and there if everyone else is injured)
Toto needs to go.
Wolf and Wilson are my first choice CB paring but need one to replace Wilson really, with Ndaba as backup.
Now we are canon fodder for premiership teams - that’s how far we have fallen !!!!!
Don’t give us more PR spin Paul is fans aren’t stupid !!!!!
I was worried last year........ even more so this !

Wooly74 added 16:47 - Aug 25
What a sad position we find ourselves in, 20 years ago we would have been competing with Spurs and Wet Spam no problems at all. Instead we are staring at a mid table Division 3 position at best with this current set up. Pick the best 11 and stick to it, the more they play together the more confident they will get. For me that us currently as follows:


Vincent Young
(desperately need a new CB)



Play Jackson as a winger because he is not a striker, give Norwood and Sears a chance and use Hawkins and or Drinan as an impact subs.


El Mizouni




Nobbysnuts added 16:47 - Aug 25
You can't polish a turd.....💩

BlueBlood90 added 16:49 - Aug 25
“El Mizouni, playing on the right of the front three, not his preferred role”

These are the sort of paragraphs which are driving me mental. Play people in their natural position for once! How can we ever expect these lads to develop if they’re just being shoehorned in to play wherever we’re a bit light. It happens time and time again at this club!

Suffolkboy added 16:51 - Aug 25
Comments from a number of lTFC senior staff members might be interesting to digest ; but alongside some unfettered views from the players .
So many commentators appear to voice contrasting ,but similar, views about our line up , formation and system it does rather look as if there’s much to be decided and yet much to ponder .
Let’s see greater resolve , Manager down !

You need to login in order to post your comments

Blogs 285 bloggers

Ipswich Town Polls

About Us Contact Us Terms & Conditions Privacy Cookies Advertising
© TWTD 1995-2022