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Peterborough United 2-1 Ipswich Town - Match Report
Tuesday, 9th Feb 2021 21:07

James Norwood gave Town an early lead at London Road but goals from Jonson Clarke-Harris and Joe Ward saw Peterborough to a 2-1 victory over the Blues. Norwood hit his third goal of the season in the sixth minute but Clarke-Harris headed a leveller in the 38th minute and then Ward won it with a free-kick five minutes after the break.

Skipper Chambers came in at right-back for Luke Matheson, who dropped to the bench, while Ward was back on the left with Myles Kenlock among the subs.

Bishop returned at the top of a narrow midfield diamond with Norwood joining Troy Parrott up front, Town eschewing their usual 4-3-3/4-2-3-1 system presumably due to the tricky London Road pitch.

Former Posh wideman Gwion Edwards and Freddie Sears were also on the bench, while Luke Thomas was missing from the 18.

Peterborough were without star attacker Siriki Dembele with Mo Eisa coming into an otherwise unchanged side.

Despite being cold, there was little sign of snow in the Peterborough area but with the pitch muddy and short on grass.

After both teams and the officials took a knee in support of Black Lives Matter, Joe Ward hit a powerful fifth-minute shot which Tomas Holy claimed confidently.

A minute later, the Blues, wearing their burgundy and blue third strip, went in front. Holy kicked long - in line with the Blues’ early approach on the Sunday morning pitch - and Frankie Kent and Posh skipper Mark Beevers had got in one another’s way as they tried to head clear on the edge of the box.

Bishop reacted quickly and deftly played a pass to the left of the box for Norwood, who hit a low shot which beat keeper Christy Pym at his near post.

On 14 Downes, playing in the holding role with Dozzell ahead of him to his left and Judge to the right, was booked for what looked a solid ball-winning challenge on Dan Butler on halfway with the Posh players appealing that it should have been a red card. While the Blues midfielder won the ball, some referees may well have deemed it an out-of-control tackle.

There was a scare for Town in the 22nd minute when a ball in from the right deflected over Holy. However, the keeper moved quickly to get himself in the way as Eisa shot at goal from eight yards.

In the 28th minute, with Peterborough trying to play football despite the surface and the Blues more direct and looking to counter, Eisa cut in from the left and hit a shot into Holy’s arms.

Just before the half hour, Holy missed his punch from a corner but somehow managed to bundle it behind for another flag-kick before it dropped for a Posh player.

Norwood needed treatment for a knock on 32 soon after fouling Ward in the centre circle as Town looked to break following a Posh corner having left three players up spread widely along the halfway line at the flag-kick, as they had against Blackpool at the weekend.

Eisa shot over from the edge of the area in the 36th minute and three minutes Posh levelled.

Butler crossed from the left with Judge unable to cut it out with Chambers chasing back from being involved further up the field, and Clarke-Harris rose between Ward and Mark McGuinness to nod back across Holy and into the corner of the net, the striker’s 17th goal in all competitions this season.

In injury time Downes was spoken to by referee Ben Toner for speaking out of turn after a decision had gone against Dozzell having been booked for his earlier challenge.

Soon afterwards, with snow now falling, Toner’s whistle ended a half which had started perfectly for the Blues with Norwood’s well-taken goal.

However, Town had failed to threaten after that with Peterborough able to pass the ball around despite the pitch and use the wide areas left open by the Blues’ narrow system.

The Peterborough goal was well-deserved when it came, although looked one the Blues will see as having been preventable.

Town switched Norwood, presumably at least partly due to his injury, although the system hadn’t really worked, for ex-Posh winger Edwards at half-time. The Blues moved to 4-1-4-1 with the Welshman on the left and Bishop on the right.

Eisa hit a low shot form the right across Holy soon after the restart, the Czech getting down and across to palm it to safety out to the opposite flank.

Five minutes into the second half, Posh took the lead. After a foul by McGuinness on Clarke-Harris not far outside the area to the right, Ward struck a free-kick past the end of the Town wall and into the corner of the net with Holy watching it on its way when he should have done better.

On 55 Ward and a well-advanced Holy gave Eisa a sniff of a ball played over the top 10 yards outside the area but Downes did well to get back and cut out the danger before the Posh striker fouled him. The keeper may have expected the ball to come through to him more quickly but it held up on the heavy pitch.

With Town not having threatened, aside from a couple of blocked shots from the edge of the box, Posh went close to a third when Sammie Szmodics was unable to get enough on a well-struck low Clarke-Harris cross to divert it goalwards. Moments later, Town swapped Judge for Josh Harrop.

As the match passed the 70-minute mark the Blues were seeing most of the ball with Posh starting to tire. However on 71 Szmodics was sent away on the break on the left and hit a shot across Holy which the keeper batted away.

Peterborough boss Darren Ferguson made a triple change in the 74th minute with Ricky-Jade Jones, Idris Kanu and Ethan Hamilton replacing Eisa, Reece Brown and goalscorer Ward.

Two minutes later, Dozzell was booked for a cynical foul on Kanu with the Blues feeling Ward had been fouled moments earlier.

Peterborough claimed a penalty in the 77th minute when Szmodics hooked a shot at goal from 10 yards which ricocheted off Ward and fortunately flew straight at Holy. Posh were convinced the ball had struck the Irishman’s hand but referee Toner wasn’t interested.

Within a minute Szmodics hit a powerful effort from distance which Holy palmed wide before Sears replaced Bishop with a third Posh goal looking more likely than a Town second. Edwards moved to the right with Sears on the left.

As the game moved into its final five minutes there were the first signs of snow settling on the pitch.

Town had rarely threatened throughout the second half but in the penultimate scheduled minute, a Parrott shot was well saved by Pym following a corner and then the former Exeter keeper saved sharply again down at his right post from Harrop.

The Blues were unable to create another opportunity and referee Toner’s whistle confirmed Posh’s victory, a double over the visitors and yet another Town defeat to a side towards the top of the table.

Despite having got off to such a good start, the Blues were second best in the first half taking a direct approach which seemed to be an over the top reaction to the state of the Peterborough pitch.

The narrow midfield allowed the home side, who seemed to have little problem passing despite the surface, to attack down the flanks from which they scored their first goal.

Town switched back to a more regular system and approach at half-time but were again bested by Posh, who probably should have won more comfortably with the Blues only going close to a leveller right at the end.

A first away defeat in four sees Town drop back to 11th, but still four points off the play-offs ahead of Saturday’s trip to Shrewsbury, who beat Sunderland 2-1 at home this evening.

Peterborough: Pym, Butler, Thompson, Beevers (c), Kent, Eisa (Jones 74), Taylor, Clarke-Harris, Brown (Kanu 74), Szmodics, Ward (Hamilton 74). Unused: Gyollai, Burrows, Blake-Tracy, Mason.

Town: Holy, Chambers (c), Woolfenden, McGuinness, Ward, Dozzell, Downes, Bishop, Judge (Harrop 64), Parrott, Norwood (Edwards 46). Unused: Cornell, Kenlock, Matheson, Sears, Drinan. Referee: Ben Toner (Lancashire).

Photo: Action Images

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midastouch added 21:08 - Feb 9
I wanted to believe after a rare win on Saturday. Could we finally go on and beat a team higher up the league with the help of our new additions? Well we've had our answer this evening!

After a reasonably bright start we seemed utterly toothless for the rest of the game. Lambert didn't help himself changing a winning team. What did Kenlock do wrong? I would have swapped Norwood for Sears but that would have been it.

11th in the league. Nowhere near good enough.

Lambert Out!

BromleyBloo added 21:08 - Feb 9
Can I be bothered? How many last chance saloons do we/they want?

First/critical goal came from a left side cross - no surprises! Dozzell tried hard to influence, but got booked again - no surprises! Flynn battled, but got booked again - no surprises!

Holy played a blinder and saved us many times!

We seem so niaive or at times, to be less polite, just plain stupid.

Nearly nicked an undeserved draw at the end and we battled, but we should be so much better than this in all respects!!!

No salary cap - over to you Evans help us. Commit to investing substantially next season or p*ss off ASAP!!!

CustardCream added 21:09 - Feb 9
Christ that was difficult to watch. No doubt Lambert was watching a different game and thought we were 'really really excellent'. Only came alive when it was too late. Us Town fans are a patient bunch, we've needed to be. But today is the day my patience finally ran out, it was clear to anyone that knows football that two 35+ year old fullbacks were going to be torn to shreds by Peterborough's front 3. What sort of message does it send to Kenlock and Mathieson after their good performances at the weekend? I've loved this club for as long as I can remember but enough is enough. Evans grow a set of stones and get rid of Lambert! We don't want him here and it doesn't look like he wants to be here either. Today is the last tenner I'm p*ssing away until he's gone

Tractorboy1985 added 21:10 - Feb 9
Arrows up... for the haggis OUT......

ringwoodblue added 21:10 - Feb 9
When you saw tonight’s team sheet, did you honestly think we would get anything from the game? I know I didn’t.

Lambert must go, he is determined to do everything he can to destroy our club.

cromwellblue added 21:11 - Feb 9
Tactically inept.

No plan B and barely a plan A

Sack him and do it NOW!!!!

gixxeral added 21:11 - Feb 9
That was a shambles. What an embarrassment.

Bluearmy_81 added 21:11 - Feb 9
We all know ME will take no action (again) despite another unacceptable, embarrassing performance and result. He has badly let ITFC down over 14 long years and continues to. He treats fans with utter contempt. Which other clubs of our size in England would accept such continued failure in division 3 and not take action?! Farcical. #lambertout #Evansout
Join Evans out of ITFC on facebook

BlueArrow added 21:11 - Feb 9
Tick toc tick toc tick toc tick toc tick toc tick toc tick toc tick toc

TimmyH added 21:11 - Feb 9
Quelle surprise!!...well Paul how did your tactical plan work tonight? - 'I couldn't fault the lads tonight I thought they were superb in tough playing conditions' or some rubbish like that!

Didn't create a chance for nearly 80 minutes after Norwood scored...pathetic! Hoodoo!? no just not good enough.

Lambert out!

Roola added 21:12 - Feb 9
Utter dross... start to finish.
Poor team selection (why change from Saturday, everyone can see the spark the new players brought in)

No Drive

Poor substitutions

Please Lambert leave.

Reuserscurtains added 21:12 - Feb 9
Now I know Lambert has been nothing short of an embarrassment of late, however after recent good loan addictions and Blackpool, I thought I’d give him one last chance.
Team selection at 6pm today - chambers and ward back in.
WHY???? I genuinely can’t think of a single reason for this and to be honest I can’t explain most of what he does anymore. If I were Matherson, Sears and Kenlock I’d be fuming.
The man has to go NOW, there’s more than enough talent in that squad for this league.
Now!!! 60 points still to play for, why wait? Angry.

unknown100 added 21:13 - Feb 9
Chambers and ward worst players on the pitch

I know the pitch is going to get blamed but Peterborough managed and we did for spells when we went 2-1 down

Crazy game plan, crazy team selection, cried out for 442 all year and only played it after he showed we could win and play well with 433/4231

aas1010 added 21:13 - Feb 9
Lambert out 🪓🪓

Dolphinblue added 21:13 - Feb 9
Nothing wrong with squad but why oh why make 4 changes to a superb performance on saturday.
Changing both fullbacks for under performing Chambers and Ward especially as Kenlock and Matherson so effective.
Judge mom in his favoured position, even told us this in interview, moved wider.
Unfathomable decisions from Lambert.

LimerickTractorBoy added 21:13 - Feb 9
Gone beyond the joke after that team selection tonight. Marcus Evans and Paul Lambert taking the piss out of ITFC AND IT'S SUPPORTERS

planetblue_2011 added 21:13 - Feb 9
Why on earth would you change a winning team u fxxking idiot!!
Why on earth would you put Chambers & Ward back in the team when both full backs played so well last Saturday. For the life of me I just can’t understand this bloke and why he would do this!!!
Just please sack him tomorrow Evans because this prat of a manager doesn’t have a clue what he’s doing😡

johnwarksshorts added 21:14 - Feb 9
Lambert out!! Not a clue, gutless powder puff performance. Matheson and Kenlock must be fuming.

DoseOfReality added 21:14 - Feb 9
Marcus Evans fold this rubbish up and give us our club back.

We would be better off dropping to Non League and rebuilding than be in a constant state of demise and falling further in debt to you.

£120+ million debt for this sh!t ?!.. We would be back to Lge 1 from non-league and with no debt and with a sense of pride.

With your ownership it is more debt and lge 2 .. after years more boredom and lies.

Absolute disgrace. Give us our club back while there is a fan base that would still get behind a complete rebuild, because you are killing it slowly.

Abject failure, arrogant, elusive, liar of a man.

If anybody is still paying for season tickets STOP NOW !!

DebsyAngel added 21:14 - Feb 9
Didn't watch it or listen to the commentary as pretty tied up with stuff at home, but one thing that I cannot fathom out - WHY CHANGE A WINNING TEAM WHO PLAYED REALLY WELL FROM SATURDAY??? Absolutely ludicrous idea.

chopra777 added 21:14 - Feb 9
Disappointing result after a good start, Lambert was daring with his selection, but failed again. Tactical numpty. We just lacked ideas to hurt Peterboro. It felt like we took the wheels off our tractor and got stuck in the mud. Poor show.

RobsonWark added 21:14 - Feb 9
ArnieM where are you? You and all the other Chambers 'he who must not be dropped' worshippers must be so proud that he has captained us to another glorious defeat in a tier 3 football game. I'm sooooooo glad I didn't waste £10 tonight after seeing the team sheet!

After a great game on Saturday I was so looking forward to watching this game with great optimism we could beat Peterborough and then the team sheets were published.

Why can't you see that whenever he players all our other players play out of position because they all have to cover for him defensively. Which means they can't do their jobs properly so the game plan goes out the window from the off.

We were soooooo much better on Saturday when all the players did their own jobs and didn't have to worry about the old man messing up every time the ball game down our right side.

Bluespeed added 21:14 - Feb 9
I hear the coward won’t face the press tonight, hopefully it’s because he will walk ! Tho I doubt it , very very worrying times indeed!

Norwichbeater added 21:15 - Feb 9
Where do you even start after that performance. The back four looked like they were auditioning for the old game show game for a laugh. Ward and chambers would be better acting as the chuckle brothers rather than professional footballers. Holy and Norwood for his goal are the only players that you could give a mark out of 10. How sad that I bet 50 quid at half time to get a return of 131.25 against my own team. I would be silly to turn down that guaranteed money. The Blackpool win will give lambert another 5 games. Then I am sure we will win one more that will give him another 5 games. So it continues..... we are the only club in all 4 divisions that would keep him in a job. What else can I say? It appears there is not anything we can do.

Lightningboy added 21:15 - Feb 9
Sorry Paul but in the words of Dick Emery “you are awful”.

Lambert Out.

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