Shrewsbury Town 0-0 Ipswich Town - Match Report
Tuesday, 4th May 2021 21:03
Town’s final away game of the season at Shrewsbury ended in their ninth 0-0 draw of the season. Clear-cut chances were rare at both ends with Troy Parrott forcing home keeper Harry Burgoyne into a couple of saves and the Irishman and Norwood both shot over for the Blues, while sub Dan Udoh looped a header onto the top of the Town cross-bar at the other.
Parrott replaced Teddy Bishop, who dropped to the bench, in a side otherwise unchanged from Saturday’s 2-1 win at Swindon.
Dai Cornell was again in goal with Kane Vincent-Young at right-back and Myles Kenlock at left-back with Stephen Ward again missing out.
The veteran Irishman, who is out of contract this summer, appears to have played his final game for the club with his total of league starts this season having reached 29 and we understand, as was the case with Alan Judge, a 30th would trigger Town’s year’s option on his deal.
Andre Dozzell partnered Flynn Downes in the middle of midfield with Gwion Edwards on the left and Armando Dobra on the right, and Parrott behind lone out-and-out striker Norwood, who again skippered.
For Shrewsbury, former Blues loanee Matthew Pennington started at the heart of their defence, while Donald Love and Shaun Whalley replaced Ethan Ebanks-Landell, who missed out on a place in the 18, and Harry Chapman, who was on the bench.
Tom Bloxham, a 17-year-old striker, kept his place having impressed when making his full league debut in Saturday’s 3-2 home defeat to Oxford.
Pennington headed the game’s first chance over the bar from a corner on the left in the seventh minute with the Blues having seen plenty of the ball in the early stages but without threatening.
The game, played in cold, blustery and intermittently rainy conditions, continued in a similar pattern with Town, wearing their light blue away kit, creating their first opportunity in the 18th minute when Norwood headed wide from Vincent-Young’s cross.
A minute later, the Shrews, with manager Steve Cotterill loudly shouting instructions from the back of the directors’ box, claimed a penalty when a free-kick from the left reached skipper Ollie Norburn on the other side of the box from where he hit a shot against Kenlock. Referee Lee Swabey showed no interest.
Pennington was shown the game’s first yellow card in the 27th minute for upending Parrott as the on-loan Spurs man sought to break away down the left.
Parrott forced home keeper Harry Burgoyne into action for the first time seven minutes later, the Irish international cutting in from the left before hitting a powerful shot which the Shrews number one batted away to his right.
Town ought to have gone ahead in the 35th minute when Dobra tricked his way past his man on the right of the box and his cross reached Edwards, who slipped as he tried to turn the ball goalwards from eight yards.
Cornell was forced into his first serious save of the half on 39 when Whalley was played in on the left of the box by Norburn but the Town keeper was quickly out to block.
A minute later, Edwards claimed what would have been a very generous penalty when he was dispossessed on the left of the area with Shrewsbury repeatedly giving the ball away inside their own half. Town similarly gave it away again before they were able to create a chance of note.
Cornell was in action again in the 41st minute when Love played Bloxham in on the right of the box but the Blues keeper saved down to his right.
Norwood was yellow-carded for frustratedly kicking the ball over the stand into the car park soon afterwards with referee Swabey subsequently going to the touchline to have words with Blues boss Cook, who had expressed his frustration at a number of decisions, most notably a foul given against Downes, which led to the Town manager to claim the referee was “making the game a farce”.
That was the final excitement of a half which won’t live long in the memory, the game every bit a meaningless end-of-season dead rubber. Town had seen plenty of the ball without creating much with Cornell having been forced into marginally bigger saves than his Shrews counterpart.
The Blues’ best chance was Dobra’s cutback from the right to Edwards with the Welshman losing his footing as the ball came to him.
Two minutes after the restart Vincent-Young skipped away from his man on the right of the box but his cross was cut out. A subsequent Kenlock ball into the area from the other flank was similarly cut out as Town began the half on the front foot.
On 52 Edwards hit a shot after a corner had been cleared which struck a defender and almost fell for Norwood as Burgoyne came off his line. Somewhat surprisingly, referee Swabey indicated a goalkick.
Norburn shot through to Burgoyne two minutes later, before Josh Vela was booked for foul on Dozzell.
As the game passed the hour mark rain began to fall heavily once again, then Parrott hit a well-struck shot from distance which Burgoyne palmed away from goal.
On 62 the home side made a double change with Love and Bloxham replaced by Dave Edwards and Dan Udoh.
There was a scare for the Blues in the 66th minute when Whalley was sent away on the right, although appearing to have strayed offside. His low cross only found Cornell’s arms as Kenlock made a challenge. The Town left-back appeared to get nothing on the ball and Whalley claimed a penalty and appeared to have a case.
Parrott blazed well over for Town in the 68th minute having been teed-up on the edge of the box by Edwards.
Two minutes later, Norwood crossed low from the right having been sent away by Dobra but too far in front of Edwards. Kenlock sent it back in to the far post but Norwood headed wide and in any case the linesman indicated he was offside.
The second half had become increasingly open with the Blues seeing most of the ball but without being able to create a clear-cut chance to break the deadlock.
In the 80th minute the home side should have gone in front. Edwards was played in on the left of the box but was thwarted by the advancing Cornell. The loose ball ran back to Edwards, who crossed to fellow sub Udoh on the edge of the six-yard box with Cornell out of his ground but the striker’s header hit the top of the bar.
Dobra, who had put in a lively display, sent Norwood away on the right on 84 but the striker failed to find Parrott with his pass with the Town number 40 otherwise through on goal.
A minute later, Dobra played in Norwood but the stand-in skipper shot over when he should have at least have hit the target.
On 88 the former Tranmere man, who wasn’t enjoying his finest few minutes, appeared to hit an effort against his own foot and wide when found inside the box.
In injury time, Vincent-Young looked in some pain having appeared to slip and hurt his shoulder. The right-back left the field with this left arm in a makeshift sling made from his shirt. Oli Hawkins took over for literally the final couple of seconds of the game.
The Blues controlled the second half but without carving out too many opportunities, although they ought to have done better with those that the did create. Shrewsbury went closest to scoring via Udoh’s header.
Town’s sixth 0-0 draw in their last 10 matches, while Saturday’s win at Swindon the only one of their last eight games in which they have scored.
The result leaves the Blues ninth going into Sunday’s final day home game against Fleetwood.
Shrewsbury: Burgoyne, Love (Edwards 62), Pennington, Pierre, Walker, Ogbeta, Davis, Vela, Norburn (c), Whalley (Chapman 77), Bloxham (Udoh 62). Unused: Bevan, Williams, Goss, Main.
Town: Cornell, Vincent-Young (Hawkins 90), Woolfenden, McGuinness, Kenlock, Dozzell, Downes, Edwards, Parrott, Dobra, Norwood (c). Unused: Holy, Chambers, Nsiala, Bishop, Harrop, Bennetts, Hawkins. Referee: Lee Swabey (Devon).
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