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Ipswich Town 1 v 0 Gillingham
SkyBet League One
Tuesday, 27th October 2020 Kick-off 19:00
Ipswich Town 1-0 Gillingham - Match Report
Tuesday, 27th Oct 2020 21:01

Teddy Bishop’s goal three minutes from time saw Town to a 1-0 victory over Gillingham at Portman Road. The Blues had had plenty of chances in the first half, before the Gills improved after the break but Bishop’s fourth goal of the campaign claimed the points for Town, who move up to third in League One.

On-loan Arsenal man Mark McGuinness was handed his Town debut, Luke Woolfenden his first League One appearance of the season and Freddie Sears a return to the side as the Blues made three changes from the team which lost 1-0 at Lincoln on Saturday.

McGuinness and Woolfenden formed a new central defensive partnership with Toto Nsiala dropping to the bench and James Wilson out of the 18.

Jack Lankester moved into a free advanced central midfield role having played wide on the right on Saturday with Jon Nolan suspended for three games following his red card at Sincil Bank.

Sears was on the left of the front three with Gwion Edwards on the right and Oli Hawkins in the centre.

Gillingham included former Blues loanees Jordan Graham and Dominic Samuel in their starting XI.

Sears struck the first shot of the game in the ninth minute from 20 yards but the ball deflected wide.

The Blues, with assistant boss Stuart Taylor in charge in manager Paul Lambert’s absence, dominated the ball and looked the more dangerous side in the opening minutes, albeit without creating many chances.

In the 15th minute Andre Dozzell curled a free-kick wide after he, Lankester and skipper Luke Chambers had all argued their own case for taking it.

Sears had the ball in the net in the 19th minute but with referee Antony Coggins having blown his whistle for a foul.

The former Colchester man had been played in by a ball over the top, Gills keeper Jack Bonham came out to collect but collided with defender Christian Maghoma and dropped it for the striker, However, Coggins appeared to indicate that he felt Sears had committed a foul, which looked harsh on the Town number 20.

Bonham received treatment for the knock he received in the incident but was able to continue.

Lankester went within a couple of inches of his first goal since January 2019 in the 24th minute when he stuck out a leg to divert a Chambers header back into the box towards goal and saw it strike the bar and fall safely for the visitors.

Three minutes later, Rob McKenzie was booked for a foul on Edwards as the Welshman broke towards halfway.

In the 33rd minute Gills keeper Bonham was forced off having received treatment again for what appeared to be a wrist injury presumably suffered in the earlier clash.

Nervous-looking league debutant Joe Walsh, whose most recent of his five previous senior outings was in the EFL Trophy tie at Portman Road last month, replaced the former Bristol Rovers man in goal and with his first touch picked up a back pass just inside his area. The free-kick was played to Sears but he scuffed it wide.

Town went close again in the 40th minute when a patient spell of passing ended with Edwards breaking away from his man on the right of the box and cutting back to Sears, whose low shot was deflected behind off a couple of Gills players.

From the corner, Hawkins headed off a defender and over with the subsequent flag-kick coming to nothing.

In five minutes of injury time, Lankester took a dip from 25 yards but scraped his effort wide.

The half had been all Town - as the 75-25 possession stats illustrated - and after an unthreatening start had created more than enough opportunities to go in front.

Lankester went very close when he hit the bar, Sears looked unlucky with his disallowed effort and was unfortunate with his later chance which was diverted wide, while Dozzell wasn’t far away with his free-kick.

Gillingham started the second half on the front foot but without troubling their former keeper Tomas Holy unduly.

Four minutes after the restart ex-Blues loan winger Graham sent a free-kick deep into the Sir Bobby Robson Stand.

Just before the hour mark another former Blues loanee Samuel found Alex MacDonald who struck his shot against the grounded Chambers, who had got an important touch on the cross, when he really should have scored.

Town began to find their feet again after a slow start to the second period and in the 63rd minute Bishop struck a powerful effort from the edge of the box which Walsh tipped over.

Within a minute, Bishop found Woolfenden in a dangerous position in the box. The defender deftly took it away from his man but shot just wide.

But the Gills were still threatening and on 67 Zech Medley’s shot deflected off Chambers into Holy’s arms. A minute later, Town swapped Sears for Armando Dobra.

Town appeared certain to score in the 69th minute when Hawkins got to the byline on the right and played the ball low across the six-yard box for Edwards who looked set to score his sixth of the season until Ryan Jackson remarkably slid in and somehow took it away from the Welshman. The Blues’ frustrated penalty appeals were ambitious and fruitless.

McGuinness headed a Dozzell corner over in the 76th minute, before Lankester was replaced by Emyr Huws. Gillingham swapped Jackson for Scott Robertson.

Holy batted away a Samuel strike from the edge of the box in the 80th minute after John Akinde had broken away from Woolfenden before being halted in his tracks by the defender - perhaps not entirely legally - just outside the area.

Town were by now camped on the edge of the Gills’ box. On 84 Edwards hit a shot which Walsh did well to push past his left post. Following the corner, Huws headed wide from the edge of the box.

And in the 87th minute the deadlock was broken. Edwards nodded a Chambers cross from the right out to Ward to his left and the Irishman teed-up Bishop to waft a shot past Walsh to his left and into the net for his fourth of the season.

A minute after the Town goal, Gills boss Steve Evans was booked for dissent and goalscorer Bishop for time-wasting.

Town swapped Bishop, who had been undergoing treatment, for Keanan Bennetts in the final minute of scheduled time, then as the game moved into five additional minutes the Kent team switched skipper Kyle Dempsey for Vadaine Oliver.

Almost immediately, the sub hit the post with a header, a corner from the right having made its way to him at the back of the box.

It was a lucky escape for the Blues who were forced to withstand some pressure from the visitors in time added on but were able to see out the remaining minutes to continue their 100 per cent home record and fourth League One home clean sheet of the season.

Having dominated the first half, Town were less impressive immediately after the break but got back on top and had had a number of chances to go in front prior to Bishop’s goal well-worked and well-taken goal.

The Blues are in home action again on Saturday when Crewe Alexandra visit Portman Road.

Town: Holy, Chambers (c), Woolfenden, McGuinness, Ward, Dozzell, Bishop (Bennetts 90), Lankester (Huws 77), Sears (Dobra 68), Edwards, Hawkins. Unused: Cornell, Nsiala, Kenlock, Simpson.

Gillingham: Bonham (Walsh 33), Jackson (Robertson 76), Tucker, Maghoma, Medley, McKenzie, Dempsey (c) (Oliver 90), MacDonald, Graham, Samuel, Akinde. Unused: Eccles, Woods, Willock, Coyle. Referee: Antony Coggins (Bicester).

Photo: Matchday Images

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CustardCream added 21:04 - Oct 27
Very concerning performance and I’m worried this will paper over some very large cracks. Gillingham one of the worst sides I’ve ever seen and in the end we could have been looking at a defeat tonight.

cat added 21:06 - Oct 27
Lovely, lovely. Needed that one guys! Halts the slide and keeps the home run going. Stats suggest it was well deserved and it’s keeps us well ‘in the mix’ 🤣

Nobbysnuts added 21:06 - Oct 27
Didn't sound great but a win is a win and we desperately needed that. Hopefully we have found our best central defensive partnership. Tonight. Fingers crossed Teddy 🧸 is ok and not badly injured.

Bluearmy_81 added 21:06 - Oct 27
A vital win, keep us in touch with the top two which has to be the goal. Was a slog and didn't think the goal would come but TB delivered. COYB

blue86 added 21:08 - Oct 27
Just glad to get the 3 points! Great strike from teddy. But...... it wasnt great was it? If we continue to play as we are we wont get out of this league, that was far from convincing. You can see why we are losing to better sides in the division. 3 points yes, do we need to improve? Definitely.

Tractorboy58 added 21:09 - Oct 27
Made hard work of it, but a decent win. Would like to see a bit more change of pace sometimes as too slow for lots of the game. However really impressed with Edwards, Bishop , Chambers and the lad from Arsenal

BrandestonBlue added 21:10 - Oct 27
We obviously lack a cutting edge with so many strikers out but we dug deep and got the three points which is the main thing. Probably benefited from not having the fans on their backs

Bert added 21:11 - Oct 27
The right result but painful at times to watch. Huws for Dozzell please on Saturday .

VanDusen added 21:11 - Oct 27
A confidence booster that. Hopefully getting that last minute-r will settle the nerves again and help us push on again after a bit of a setback.

BromleyBloo added 21:12 - Oct 27
Well we won and on balance we deserved to overall, but after looking good in the first half we laboured in the second and the late Bishop strike saved us from another disappointing result, which would’ve been terrible after the last two. First half Gills not a good team, certainly nothing like Linc or Doncs and we dominated, but couldn’t score. So why lose our way after half time so badly and give quite a few chances to Gill. Liked the team, but still not enough scoring threat, again may be understandable given our injuries. Keep Woolf and McG together in the team - Woolf and Doz both have silky passing skills so must start and will only get better as they play more. Bishop also good and Lankester okay, but no real cut or thrust from the team moving forward - we do need some of our strikers back and Huws probably should have started in a young team or at least come on earlier. Hawkins battled well, but never going to score in the current set up. Still the result was everything, Peterborough dropped two points at home and exactly the same, with hopefully a better performance, essential against Crewe on Sat!!!

Ploarbear1 added 21:12 - Oct 27
This is an important result. The late goal will give us confidence that we can break teams down if we keep doing what we are doing. I'm sure this would have finished 0-0 last season as we had trouble arresting slumps. Let's make it 5 out of 5 at home to a poor Crewe side on Saturday!

Billericay12 added 21:14 - Oct 27
Not a great performance and lacking cutting edge again. Can’t see Hawkins getting enough goals and apart from a bit of hold up play and a lay off he just doesn’t offer much of a threat. Thought we were more comfortable playing the ball out from the back. Wolfenden and McGuiness much less nervy than Nsiala. Two positives for me. One is the result and two was the number of home grown youngsters out there. I can remember the year we we were relegated thinking that if we have to spend a year or two in League One it would be far more bearable and acceptable if we used it to blood our own young players and build a strong team for the future. Not sure if some will be good enough but at least they are being given a chance which they would never have got under MM. onwards and upwards.

IpswichT62OldBoy added 21:16 - Oct 27
This is a great result.

budgieplucker added 21:17 - Oct 27
The Tedster was man of the match by a country mile, carried everything from midfield, hardly a stray pass always wanted the ball and a great goal to finish - well done Teddy I was beginning to think that you were starting to go missing in some of the recent matches but you certainly were head and shoulders above the rest tonight. Andre managed to get his game back on track again and a good debut from McGuiness, Woolfie not exactly nailed it but did ok, interesting to hear why Willo was not playing.

Concerned about up front though. I don’t know how many more chances Freddie wants and he is not quick enough to pull the trigger. Hawkins ok again but seems to be a bit slow. Lankester quiet but a few nice touches.

I will take that one just to get back on track but we have to be more convincing if we really think we can convincingly beat a top six side, all those around us seem to have more sticking power and a bit tougher.

DebsyAngel added 21:19 - Oct 27
Thought we were very poor tonight mostly and needed to wake up in the second half. Gillingham could easily been the winners, but thankfully Holy did enough to stop that. Edwards had a good match and a terrific goal from Bishop. Good to see Dobra get on as well. Need to do a lot better than this come Saturday.

Esseeja added 21:22 - Oct 27
Worst performance of the season, at least we looked like doing something against Doncaster and Lincoln.

If Bishop is a cut-inside midfielder surely he should be playing as a LCM and not a RCM?
Why was Edwards on the right most of the game again? Why was Lankester playing as a LCM and not a LW and with that in mind why was Sears a LW again???

McGuiness missed far too many tackles for me and on two occasions it should have ended up in our net but luckily Gillingham forgot how to use their legs after crossing it in so we got lucky, not a good debut for me.

We deserved to lose, but we got very lucky today.

Bishop MOTM.

runaround added 21:23 - Oct 27
A real tough battle but we deserved the win in the end. Gillingham’s goal lived a charmed life at times & I cannot work out why Sears’ goal was disallowed after the keeper & defender just ran into each other

IpswichT62OldBoy added 21:24 - Oct 27
Kudos BlueArmy.

IpswichT62OldBoy added 21:26 - Oct 27
No Betty Blue yet?

RobsonWark added 21:27 - Oct 27
Watched this on ifollow as I have all the home games this season and my comments on this game:
1) In the first half I'm not sure the midfield knew which way they were supposed to be attacking. Constantly passing back to the defenders. I think some arrows need to be painted on the pitch so they can tell where the opposition goal is.
2) Also, we were taking quick free kicks and passing it backwards. What's the point of a quick free kick when you are doing that?
3) We were taking throw-ins and throwing it backwards. Why can't our fullbacks look forward and try and set up an attacking move.
4) Mick Mills said at half time that Gillingham were the worst team he had seen in Division 1 and posed no threat to us - which I totally agreed with.
5) Freddie Sears! Enough said really but I'm going to ask what is the point of him? He can't pass, he can't press the opposition down, he doesn't try and score goals - only tries to hit the target and crosses his fingers that the ball goes in the back of the net and not hit a defender or that the goalkeeper is not awke.
6) McGuinness - TRUE CLASS. Wish he he was a permanent signing.
7) Great cushioned header by Edwards to Ward who passed to Bishop who scored with a great finish.


blue86 added 21:28 - Oct 27
Although hawkins isnt a goalscorer he does hold it up and link play. Cant help but think of maybe going with two strikers. But then what system would we use? 451 at the mo is limiting us in attack a bit I feel.

Northstandveteran added 21:31 - Oct 27
Obviously happy with the three points but don't be fooled for one second that this was any kind of improvement against a Gillingham team that has such a threadbare squad that they had to give an 18 year old goalkeeper his debut.

Icantbelieveyousaidt added 21:33 - Oct 27
Phew - not the best, but we won. 100% home record - average over two points a game.

grow_our_own added 21:34 - Oct 27
People overreacting about that performance. Lankester and Woolfenden missed guilt-edge chances, 70% possession, 11 corners. We deserved to win. Gillingham have 10 points and not pushovers. As usual were missing a threat in centre-forward position. Hopefully Jackson back on Saturday.

Steve_ITFC_Sweden added 21:34 - Oct 27
I thought Freddie had scored in the first half. The ref let worse things go in other parts of the pitch, but because Freddie's nudge ended in a goal, he chickened out. Football is a contact sport, for heaven's sake. You can't give a foul every time a player "nudges" another. Not great tonight but we got the win. If only we had that striker .....

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