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Ipswich Town 1-1 Oldham Athletic - Match Report
Saturday, 6th Nov 2021 17:06

Town's wait for a home FA Cup win continues after their first round tie with Oldham Athletic at Portman Road ended 1-1. Wes Burns gave the Blues the lead on eight but Davis Keillor-Dunn equalised for Oldham four minutes prior to half-time, before Dylan Bahamboula saw a second-half penalty saved by Christian Walton as Town, who last won an FA Cup tie at Portman Road in January 2009, toiled against the League Two strugglers.

Boss Paul Cook made one change from the team which won 4-1 at Wycombe on Tuesday with Cameron Burgess, a one-time Oldham loanee, replacing Hayden Coulson, who picked up a knock at Adams Park, at left-back as he did from the bench against the Chairboys.

Janoi Donacien was back among the subs after missing the last two matches having been ill.

After the players had taken a knee - with usual the exception of Toto Nsiala, who raised a fist - to applause from the Portman Road crowd, the Blues were first to threaten in the fourth minute.

Kyle Edwards took the ball to the byline on the left before crossing to Macauley Bonne, who headed at visiting keeper Jayson Leutwiler, who saved. Kane Vincent-Young hit the rebound wide from a tight angle.

But it took only another four minutes for the Blues to go in front. Bersant Celina fed Bonne down the left just inside the area, the striker cut inside and hit a shot which Wes Burns turned home from the edge of the six-yard box for his second goal in two games and his fourth of the season.

Town continued to dominate against the League Two strugglers and on 13 Lee Evans sent over a corner from the right which Bonne headed goalwards and keeper Leutwiler uncomfortably palmed wide.

Two minutes later, Evans cut a free-kick on the right back to Burns, whose shot was blocked.

Oldham presented no threat until the 27th minute when Dylan Fage crossed from the right and Hallam Hope looped a header which Walton watched bounce well wide.

Three minutes later, Celina struck a powerful effort from just outside the box which Leutwiler batted away.

Blues skipper Morsy was booked for handling after he thought he'd been fouled in the 34th minute before Oldham created their first opportunity of the match.

Benny Couto crossed from deep on the left and Latics skipper Carl Piergianni’s header flew wide with the aid of a deflection.

Oldham were coming more into the game on and 38 Dylan Bahamboula, whose brother Plaisir had a trial with Town in the summer of 2012, hit a low shot beyond Walton’s far post.


In the 40th minute, Vincent-Young was just prevented from adding the final touch to an Edwards cross from the left, then from the corner George Edmundson, facing his old club, looped a header well over.

Having had a very comfortable afternoon, the Blues’ intensity had dropped somewhat and in the 41st minute the visitors levelled.

Nsiala failed to properly deal with a ball down the middle and Keillor-Dunn took it on a couple of paces before curling a shot beyond Walton’s left hand from the edge of the area.

Moments before the whistle, Keillor-Dunn played a ball to the right of the box towards Jordan Clarke but Edwards took it away from him as he was about to shoot.

Town had once again been guilty of allowing a side back into a game in which they had been ahead and very comfortable.

After gaining their early advantage, the Blues were well on top, although without creating too many chances to add to the lead.

However, they became more casual as the half wore on and the Latics had had a couple of opportunities prior to Keillor-Dunn’s goal.

Until then, Oldham had shown little and Town really should have gone in ahead at the break.

The Blues made two changes ahead of the second half with Matt Penney and Donacien taking over from Burgess and Vincent-Young as the full-backs with teams able to make five substitutions in the FA Cup this season from nine players on the bench.

Bonne headed the second half’s first chance straight at keeper Leuwiler in the 51st minute, before Conor Chaplin took over from Edwards.

On 55 Oldham had a gilt-edged chance to go in front. Evans pulled back Bahamboula as he sought to head at goal from close range and referee Hair pointed to the penalty spot, although booked Donacien, who protested he wasn't the guilty party.

Bahamboula took the resultant penalty himself but hit his strike too close to Walton, who dived to his right to push wide.

The save seemed to reinvigorate Town both on and off the pitch with the crowd upping the noise and the players the tempo with Penney just losing control when well-placed in the area on the left and then Burns overhitting a cross from the right.

On the hour, Harrison McGahey was shown a yellow card for pulling back Burns on halfway and two minutes later Bahamboula joined him for tripping Morsy in the centre circle.

Town were in control but without seriously testing Leutwiler until the 69th minute when a Chaplin free-kick from the edge of the box to the right was scrambled away by the keeper at his near post.

There was a scare for the Blues on 76 when Morsy slipped and allowed Oldham to break, however, Callum Whelan was stopped in the area by Edmundson as a number of Town players chased back. Moments later, Evans shot well over.

Bahamboula was replaced in the 79th minute, the Frenchman leaving the field to a smattering of applause from the Town support having caused the Blues a few problems. Harry Vaughan took over.

Town were toiling as the game moved into its final 10 minutes, Evans giving away first the ball and then a foul. From the free-kick, Walton saved well from Piergianni but with the flag having been raised.

On 83 Celina broke away and fed Chaplin to his left but Clarke slid in to dispossess the forward as he looked to shoot. Soon afterwards, Town swapped Burns and Evans for Sone Aluko and Rekeem Harper.

In the 86th minute Celina was sent away down the left and crossed but Chaplin’s sliding effort deflected weakly through to the keeper.

As the game moved into injury time, Town were showing few signs of grabbing a wining goal, indeed Oldham were seeing more of the ball around the Blues’ box.

Deep in injury time, Aluko broke down the right and hit a cross-shot which Leutwiler saved at his near post.

Moments later, the whistle confirmed that the two sides would meet again in a replay at Boundary Park which is likely to be a week on Tuesday.

While Oldham worked hard and on the balance of the game overall deserved their draw, Town once again had the game by the neck having taken the lead so early on but failed to kill it off.

But for Walton’s save from Bahamboula’s penalty, they could well have faced an embarrassing defeat to one of the EFL’s crisis clubs duiring a lacklustre second half.

Instead, both sides will go into the draw for the second round, which takes place on Monday evening live on ITV4 following the first round match between Dagenham & Redbridge and Salford City.

Town: Walton, Vincent-Young (Donacien 46), Nsiala, Edmundson, Burgess (Penney 46), Morsy (c), Evans (Harper 83), Burns (Aluko 83), Celina, Edwards (Chaplin 53), Bonne. Unused: Hladky, El Mizouni, Fraser, Pigott.

Oldham: Leutwiler, Clarke, McGahey, Piergianni (c), Whelan, Hope, Keillor-Dunn, Fage (Adams 87), Bowden, Bahamboula (Vaughan 78), Couto. Unused: Dearnley, Diarra, Da Silva, Diarra, Modi, Southerington. Referee: Neil Hair (Cambridgeshire). Att: 8,845 (Oldham: 437).


Photo: Matchday Images



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Pilgrimblue added 10:02 - Nov 7
That wasn't the team that I wanted! Pigott and Fraser should have started as they would have been keen to prove they deserved to given more chances.
Picking the same team may look good but too many are getting lazy. And what is the point of having younger talent in U23 if they're not getting a chance. This was the ideal time to shake the team up.
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Razor added 10:14 - Nov 8
Crikey that was chalk and cheese when you consider how well we played at Wycombe---we seem to have gone backwards, literally!!

Why does Piggot not get a run and WHERE IS NORWOOD!?

wOULD LIKE to see the team that started at Gillingham tom orrow night----Jacjson and Piggot ran the show there.

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Barty added 11:28 - Nov 8
Credit to PC for picking a strong team. The players [ except Walton ] lets us down badly.
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