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Ipswich Town 0-0 MK Dons - Half-Time
Saturday, 10th Apr 2021 16:00

Town’s home game against the MK Dons remains 0-0 at half-time with both sides having come close to breaking the deadlock just before half-time.

Flynn Downes returned to the Blues line-up with Armando Dobra and Aaron Drinan also coming into the team as manager Paul Cook switched what appeared to be Plan D as he looked to get Town’s play-off push back on track.

Downes, who had been out of action for almost a month with a hamstring injury, came into central midfield alongside Teddy Bishop with Andre Dozzell in a narrow role to his left and Gwion Edwards on the right. Dobra played off Drinan up front with the duo both making their first starts of Cook’s time as boss.

At the back, Luke Woolfenden moved out to right-back with skipper Luke Chambers and Toto Nsiala the centre-halves and Stephen Ward at left-back.

Alan Judge and Troy Parrott dropped to the bench having been in the side which drew 0-0 at Rochdale last week with Tristan Nydam in the matchday 18 for the first time since returning from the serious ankle injury he suffered in July 2019.

James Norwood remained absent having suffered a thigh injury last weekend and Kane Vincent-Young was also not in the 18 following his hamstring injury, while Kayden Jackson was also missing, presumably having picked up a knock.

For the Dons, defender Warren O’Hora, midfielder Louis Thompson and veteran striker Cameron Jerome missed out due to injury with long-serving skipper Dean Lewington, Scott Fraser and Will Grigg, who played for Town boss Cook at Wigan and who has been linked with the Blues, returning to the XI.

Following a two-minute silence in tribute to His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, who died yesterday aged 99, the first action of the Blues’ new era saw Dobra pick up a yellow card within the first minute for an over the top challenge on Lewington which the Dons backline felt was a more serious offence warranting more serious censure, and they might have had a case.

Three minutes later the Albanian U21 international hit the first shot of the game towards an empty net from midway inside his half but missed the target, Dons keeper Andrew Fisher having kicked poorly as Drinan put him under pressure as loudly instructed by manager Cook from the sidelines.

Visiting keeper Fisher was having a shaky start and on 10 he made heavy weather of dealing with a corner from the right but the ball didn’t fall for a Town player and was cleared.

The Blues had started well with the Dons unable to get on the ball, however, they gradually began to get their passing going and threatened for the first time in the 20th minute when Nsiala turned Daniel Harvie’s cross wide. From the corner from the left, Zak Jules shot straight at Tomas Holy having slipped over.

On 22, Ward crossed low from the left and Edwards went to ground as he battled to get to the ball past two defenders but referee Tom Nield wasn’t interested in his appeals for a penalty.

MK continued to see most of the ball but without threatening, while referee Nield’s over-fussy approach was breaking up the game and frustrating the Town team, who had been on the wrong end of most of his more pernickety decisions.

The visitors weren’t too far away from going in front in the 42nd minute when Scott Fraser shot into the side-netting after a Grigg effort had been blocked by Nsiala.

A minute later, MK claimed the ball had struck Chambers’s arm as Fraser tried to find a way through the Town backline but referee Nield was unconvinced.

The Blues went within a whisker of taking the lead in the 44th minute when Downes cut out a loose Dons pass on halfway and sent Edwards away on the right. The Welshman measured a low cross and Dobra slid in but sent the ball just the wrong side of Fisher’s left post.

That was the last action of an often cagey half in which the Blues had started on top before the Dons got their passing going and saw most of the ball.

Both sides had had long spells of possession but were only able to find a way through the opposition’s backline with the two late chances at each end.

Fraser will be frustrated that he failed to hit the target with his shot, while Dobra will feel similarly regarding his effort. Overall, the scoreline was probably a fair reflection at the break.

Town: Holy, Woolfenden, Nsiala, Chambers (c), Edwards, Dozzell, Bishop, Downes, Ward, Dobra, Drinan. Subs: Cornell, McGuinness, Nydam, Judge, Sears, Parrott, Hawkins.

MK Dons: Fisher, Lewington (c), Jules, McEachran, Darling, Grigg, Fraser, Laird, Surman, O'Riley, Harvie. Subs: Nicholls, Kasumu, Brown, Sorensen, Mason, Houghton, Sorinola. Referee: Tom Nield (West Yorkshire).

Photo: Matchday Images

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BettyBlue added 16:01 - Apr 10
PC out.

TimmyH added 16:02 - Apr 10
Another on the edge of the seat game - 1 shot on goal, hapless.

blueboy1981 added 16:04 - Apr 10
Same garbage - different day !!
Do we have a competent Division 3 Footballer amongst that lot ?? - I’m yet to see one ... !!!

barrystedmunds added 16:05 - Apr 10
Another scintillating display of total football from the Blues!😞😞

bootneckspud added 16:05 - Apr 10
Starting to wonder here 🤔🤔
Woolfenden is not a right back
Dozzell is not a left mid

Really bizarre and the performance is poor once again

jas0999 added 16:06 - Apr 10
Win, lose or draw there can be little doubt the entire attack needs an overhaul next season - including the midfield. Just not good enough.

Linkboy13 added 16:07 - Apr 10
Another poor first half performance the only bright spot being the return of Downes in midfield Bishop and Dozzell non existent very difficult for Drinan to make a impression with no help from our poor midfield.

Blue_Meanie added 16:11 - Apr 10
135 minutes played and no shots on target.

Skip73 added 16:13 - Apr 10
More proof, if any were needed, that the squad is nowhere good enough. Roll on next season when we hopefully will never see alot of them again.

multiplescoregasms added 16:13 - Apr 10
What an utter pile of dog 5hit. As a team that was just shocking. Can't see many of these being around next season......surely

blueboy1981 added 16:15 - Apr 10
I’m sure that any other group of players in this Country would have stepped up their game, given the recent and current situation !!
But this lot just can’t be asked to even do that.

Boneym added 16:33 - Apr 10
have to agree with blueboy. you would think they now know with money coming in that they need to shape up or they'll be on their way. but not this lot and our next opponents are wiping the floor with a team we could only draw with so i don't think we'll get away lightly there either.

Marinermagic added 16:37 - Apr 10
This has got to stop, can we terminate the season now on the grounds that we have a team of untalented, pathetic players who are a disgrace to the shirt. It is clear they have no fight or ambition and are the worst Ipswich team for years.

Boneym added 16:38 - Apr 10
my mistake i forgot we did manage to beat accrington..🤦

TimmyH added 16:42 - Apr 10
Couldn't hit a barn door from 6 yards...

portmanteau added 16:50 - Apr 10
Whatever the result today PC has had his chance and seems incapable of managing a whelk stall.
Still faithfully following the instructions that PL left him. Game is screaming for subs at halftime or earlier but no he waits until the regulation 6o minute point to desperately throw on someone, anyone. No imagination knowledge or a clue. The idea that he will be able to turn this shambles round in the summer is frankly laughable based on his performance since coming here.

Marinermagic added 16:55 - Apr 10
Where were we when Lambert called it a day due to unfair pressure from press, fans Blue Action numpties ?

Norwichbeater added 16:59 - Apr 10
Got what we played for. Yawn another exciting formation and tactics

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