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Ipswich Town 2 v 0 Rochdale
SkyBet League One
Saturday, 26th September 2020 Kick-off 15:00
Lambert: We Deserved to Win
Saturday, 26th Sep 2020 18:31

Town boss Paul Lambert felt his team deserved their 2-0 victory over Rochdale despite starting the game sloppily.

Second-half goals from Teddy Bishop and Gwion Edwards saw the Blues, who maintained their position at the top of the League One table, to their third successive success by the same scoreline.

“I thought we deserved to win,” Lambert said afterwards. “I thought we started the game a little sloppily through our own doing.

“I thought we had a lot of the ball without penetrating enough at the start of the game. But then we started to find our rhythm.

“Oli Hawkins had a great chance, it was a brilliant header and it was a brilliant save, you’ve got to give that kid [Gavin Bazunu] his due, it was helluva save.

“Then Oli hit the post, then he had one cleared off the line and you think it could be one of those days.

“But all credit to the guys, they found their feet and we started to play. There were some really fantastic switches of play, the football was great, the off the ball running was great. But we were a little bit sloppy at the beginning.”

As was the case at Bristol Rovers last week, Town had to remain patient before putting the game to bed in the second half.

“When you have too much of the ball it can hurt you, a team sits off,” Lambert reflected. “But that’s the respect they showed us, I think they know we’re a good side.

“We were patient, we cycled the ball really well from side to side at certain moments. I’m really overall but the patience and the way we’re playing is really pleasing.”

The Blues boss was pleased with his side’s third League One clean sheet of the season and their fourth in all competitions.

You have to go back to the 1993/94 Premier League campaign for the last time the Blues won their first three league matches without conceding when a 3-0 win at Oldham was followed by 1-0 home victories over Southampton and Chelsea.

“The lads threw their bodies into things and as I’ve always said, the corner stone of any strong team is the defence,” he said.

“It allows everybody else to find their feet and get going and the defending, as a back four and a goalkeeper, I thought was excellent.”

The Town manager was pleased to see more goals from midfield and wide areas with Teddy Bishop netting his second in three games.

“Another one for Bish. I think Oli Hawkins did brilliantly with the goal, I thought he had a great game, Hawkins,” he said.

“Bish ran off the ball, everyone knows he can run off people, he creates running the other way and if we can keep him fit we’ve got another asset.”

Lambert was also delighted with summer signing Hawkins’s first league start and explained his decision to name the former Portsmouth man in his XI in place of James Norwood.

“I just thought Oli gives us something different,” he continued. “I don’t mean physically or anything like that. He’s got a really good touch as well and I knew he’d be a handful. On another day he could have had a hat-trick. It paid off.”

He says that despite his side being top of the table, it’s still very early days: “There’s a long, long way, we’ve so many games. We’ve the EFL Trophy coming up [Gillingham at home a week on Tuesday] when we’ll try and play the kids.

“We’ve got a few knocks as well, which is not great and with the number of games we have to play, it’s a crazy situation, a crazy time for everybody in the world of football.”

Winger Alan Judge was again missing from the 18 but Lambert says the Irish international, who picked up a hamstring problem in the Fulham Carabao Cup tie, should be back for the trip to the MK Dons.

“He was touch and go, he’ll be OK for next week,” he confirmed. “As I said before, Judgey would have started last week if he’d been fit. But he’ll be back next week and let’s see.”

New signing Mark McGuinness was also left out, partly as there wasn’t room for him in the squad.

“There was a bit of that, and the kid’s only just here,” Lambert added. “But I’m really happy with how he’s trained, how’s he’s come into the equation and I think Toto [Nsiala] and James [WIlson] and Woolfy [Luke Woolfenden] certainly know there’s a fight on their hands to stay in there because McGuinness I think will be a good player.”

Lambert had praise for Stephen Ward, who had a hand in both goals: “I think the biggest compliment I can give him is that his professionalism is unbelievable. Dear oh dear, if the young guys can learn from him, they’ll have no better model of a pro.

“His enthusiasm for the game, hunger for the game and just being an absolute pleasure to work with.

“A really good guy to work with and somebody you can see has been at the top of his game for a helluva long time in his life, 50-odd caps for the Irish team. He’s a top player but more importantly for me, a top person.”

The Blues made a similarly positive start last season before falling away but Lambert believes they are playing better football this time around.

“Without a doubt,” he insisted. “You guys will probably write what you want to write but my opinion is we’re playing so much good football, have so much dominance of the ball, have a lot of guys with confidence there.

“My big compliment to them is that they’ve been great in training at it and it becomes second nature to them.”

But Lambert knows there will be more difficult afternoons to come, even if he was impressed by Rochdale.

“Absolutely, credit to Rochdale, they’re a good team, they had a good result against Portsmouth last week,” he said.

“Bristol Rovers have spent a bit of money, they’re a really good side, they play a different way from a lot. Wigan were a good team. Every game is tough.”

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LWNR2013 added 18:43 - Sep 26
Yes, we did.

LWNR2013 added 18:46 - Sep 26
Yep, Hawkins was first class. Toto had a lot to do and did some great things 👍

LWNR2013 added 18:47 - Sep 26
Was I the only one watching?

Edmundo added 19:04 - Sep 26
As usual, few comments when we win. Knives out when we lose.
Solid start. Lambert has hopefully learned from last year ,but we are yet to play a "top 6" team.

PutneyBlue added 19:07 - Sep 26
LWNR2013 I watched the whole game until the 50th minute when my broadband went down for 15 minutes. Did we score?


dangerous30 added 19:09 - Sep 26
Well done lads 😀

NorthLondonBlue2 added 19:33 - Sep 26
It was a good game and we played some smart football. True, another team on another day might have scored against us. But, frankly success breeds confidence breeds success.

Let’s keep it going!

heathen66 added 19:48 - Sep 26
It was a solid performance and yes Hawkins did very well, and unlucky not to score at least one.
Norwood has done very little to suggest he should start, so Hawkins has the shirt...and deserves to keep it !!!
Having said that playing a 4-5-1 formation leaves the lone striker very isolated...often with his back to goal or chasing balls.
Therefore it is refreshing to see goals from midfield
Cannot say we missed Judge at all, and like PL said about McGuiness...there is currently no room in the 18 man squad for him at the moment, let alone the starting XI !!!

Ebantiass added 19:50 - Sep 26
Lovely ,lets have lots more of this please.

Who knows what will happen this season, we started well last season then fell away,but credit due to the team we are beating the teams in front of us.


ThaiBlue added 20:29 - Sep 26
Not a fan of lambert but will give him credit for our good start.leave the team to gel and dont chop and change,keep it up town.

runningout added 20:39 - Sep 26
Bogey teams on our tails to show what we are really made of :-)

RaymondovicBlue added 21:03 - Sep 26
Much tougher teams to come but.... Honestly see signs that we also have more.... Possibly much more. VERY impressed with Hawkins, as I have been with Drinan to be fair.... Freddie wasn't at his best today but... Good formation, solid defence lovely midfield and..... Roll on!!!! 👍💪👍

bigolconnor added 21:22 - Sep 26
Woolfenden and McGuinness are maybe better passers of the ball than Wilson and Nsiala and maybe Downes instead of Nolan, Lankester instead of Sears. But really you can’t change a team that has won three in a row and not conceded.

TractorRoyNo1 added 22:00 - Sep 26
Edwards had a really good game

LWNR2013 added 22:19 - Sep 26
Putney, that was funny 😀

LWNR2013 added 22:21 - Sep 26
It could have all unravelled within 5 minutes of Downes coming on but thankfully he calmed down.

Dolphinblue added 07:32 - Sep 27
Well done Lambert....well done Chambers #wheresthenegcrewgone

Jonaldo added 08:54 - Sep 27
A workmanlike performance but would like to highlight that Nsiala dealt with everything that was thrown into the box again.

Last season teams were throwing balls in there from anywhere for fun knowing they had a 50:50 chance of scoring.

Hope he can build on this form and keep any thought of returning Chambers to CB out of Lamberts mind.

Billybobblue added 10:45 - Sep 27
Another great start this season, lads have been great that are in the side. Toto needs to just stick to simple passing at the back and his game to me is solid. He seems to have learnt alot and isnt rushing into challenges and giving away silly free kicks, which is good and fair play to him after the fans backlash on him and his performances. Only gripe on yesterday was we should have put the game to bed before half time and need to be more clinical, especially when we come against better teams.
Credit to the team though, 3 wins, 3 clean sheets in the first three games is brilliant, onwards and upwards. COYB

JDAndCoke added 11:11 - Sep 27
Absolutely right Edmundo. I made this point last week and I think it's a real shame that some people on here find it difficult to enjoy winning and give praise. Then we wonder why the players confidence is knocked. So few comments on this thread in comparison to when we lose it's laughable.

Anyway, the lads were great today. Hawkins up top absolutely top class, held the ball up well and brought others in to play, exactly what you want from him although possibly should have had one or two himself. Toto proving us all wrong, another good game for the midfield, Doz in particular with some more exceptional passing. My final word goes to Tomas Holy though. 3 clean sheets in a row. Not had too many saves to make in any games but he's stepped up when needed. We all know saves can be more difficult when keepers are having a quiet game so hats off TH, keep it up.

BlueandTruesince82 added 11:13 - Sep 27
We started with 3 nice fixtures but we won them all to nil so cant ask much more.

Keep it rolling and I will repent..... tougher tests to come though so keeping grounded. None the less, credit for 3 decent performances.

SuffolkPunch70 added 14:39 - Sep 27
Not sure why everyone thinks these were easy fixtures. Bristol took a draw out of Sunderland, Rochdale did the same to Portsmouth, and Wigan won away at Portsmouth yesterday (the first time Portsmouth have lost at home in 17 months !!). The lads have managed to dispatch all three teams without conceding, played some good football (which we have all been complaining about not seeing enough of over the past 3 seasons !), and everyone is contributing.
I think, whatever league you are in, there is no such thing as an easy game, and the professional way the team have approached all three shows a level of focus and determination that we have not seen in a while. Lambert also appears to be making good in-game decisions and adjustments at last.
My advice to everyone - stop worrying about what may or may not happen when we play a "big team" - live in the here and now, enjoy seeing your team winning and get behind the lads.
Well done ITFC on a great start to the season - keep working hard, and long may it continue. COYB.

Lovemyclub74 added 18:33 - Sep 27
Is it me or has anyone else noticed when we win bluearmy81 never posts on here 😂😂😂🤫

Daniel72 added 22:46 - Sep 28
Fantastic.. I didn't even have the internet but from the people in St. Edmundsbury on Sunday you would think we had lost.. I've been busy with other things.. come on the Town!

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