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The most frustrating thing about the U23s and U18s playing so well....
at 09:14 25 Sep 2018

....is that they are playing how a Paul Hurst side plays. We really seemed to have embraced his 4141 throughout the club, with high tempo, high pressing, and it is really great to watch at that level.

I noted it in pre season with Hurst 'making his mark' (as per the below post)

But we seem to have drifted so far away from it at first team level and I can't understand why. I appreciate it is much harder at that level when against better opposition, but our first team players are comparitively as good as our U23s compared to the opposition.

I worry it is because the u23s and U18s are far better drilled, and far fitter as been working on it throughout pre season - whereas 1st team squad took into the season to be fully formed and we now can't get the players fit enough. i think there is an argument for Hurst to try and play his fittest team, rather than his best one at the moment.

Very frustrating, as that style is fun to watch, but Hurst could be gone before he has even properly tried to implement it into the first team

Paul Hurst - Making his mark by itfcjoe 20 Jul 8:27
I've been to all 3 pre season games at all the age levels this week (1st team v Crawley, U23s v Lowestoft and U18s v Sudbury) and it's really clear that Hurst has been getting his ideas over to each team - there have been huge similarities in all 3 games.

41131

Back 4
Spence - Woolfenden - Chambers - Kenlock
Cotter - Marshall - Ndaba - Webber
Ronan - Henry - Vega - Clements

Full backs pushing on very high when we have the ball, acting as almost wingers when on the attack, Defensively being asked to defend 1 on 1 a lot and win battles. Ball to be passed out from the back

Defensive Midfield 1
Skuse
McGavin
Scott

Takes the ball of the back 4, and looks to begin play - key out ball is a diaganol to the full backs who are advanced and play begins from there. When we have the ball split the centre backs and drop into a back 3 so more ground is covered to ward of counter attacks.

Midfield 1
Dozzell
Crowe
El-Mizouni

More of a ball player, but a lot of responsibility to press as well. If Diagonal to full back isn't on then up to them to take ball of the deep lying player and try to create something and get playing. Recycling possession.

Attacking 3
Sears - Nydam - Ward
Folami - Lankester - Roberts
Foudil - Dobra - Hughes

Wide players have to cover a lot of ground and get up and down the pitch - stay very wide without the ball and try to take ball down the line on counters. When they have the full backs up supporting them seem to drift inside to try and get extra bodies int he middle whilst still linking up with the full back who is the one who tends to get the cross in. Central man presses the CBs and DMs hard, and gets beyond the striker often looking to score goals or get on the end of crosses in the box.

Striker 1
Waghorn
Drinan
Brown

A lot of back to goal play, and a lot of tireless running. Has to be able to break quickly and carry the ball, but also bring others into play when the game requires it. A position that a lot of half chances seem to fall to and needs to be a good finisher.


One of the main things I've noted though, is that the pressing is very high and very intense - all 3 games have seen us tail off in the second half as players seem to run out of puff.

We are playing more football, and getting more men forward than the previous manager - the midfielders are getting ahead of the striker and making late 3rd man runs which are hard to pick up. Dobra did this especially well last night.

I'm very impressed at how quickly the message seems to have been gotten across at all levels, and think the players have had a really physically tough pre season - the youths seem to be on similar fitness regimes to the first team which is very tough, but required.


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This is what was feared when Championship players were replaced by L1 and L2....
at 09:23 24 Sep 2018

....players in such a great number so quickly.

Frankly, we just lack quality, and it is most obvious in the final 3rd of the pitch. We just don't look like scoring at all, no one can hold the ball up, and there are too many loose touches and pieces of sloppy play.

I just don't see us scoring enough goals to stay up, can anyone see Hurst here if we are winless going into the next international break.

If, as speculated, Evans is unhappy with how Hurst has gone about things with regards to relationships off the pitch and the size of the overhaul - why has he allowed it. The ship is heading into the rocks under his watch.
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Kayden Jackson
at 11:05 21 Sep 2018

He still looks very raw, and his touch does let him down but I was really excited by some of the flashes he showed on Tuesday night.

His pace is electric and he puts himself about well - we played to his strengths more with regards to giving him something to work with with slid balls into areas for him to chase down.

Just a shame for that last chance his legs turned to jelly as that would have lifted the roof of Portman Road as could sense when he went through the atmosphere was crescendoing.

The sort of player I imagine could score 8 goals in 8 games and then none in the next 8, think he'll be very streaky but there is definitely a player in their - was a really good header for the goal and he caused 2 good, and pretty quick young defenders a lot of problems
[Post edited 21 Sep 11:07]
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Arsenal season ticket holder demands boycott of club in 2006....
at 14:25 20 Sep 2018

.....because of Israeli tourism sponsorship deal

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6185075/Jeremy-Corbyn-calls-boycott-Ars
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Good this from Tom Watson and Labour...
at 09:28 20 Sep 2018

....doesn't go far enough for me personally but certainly a good start

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Next manager.....
at 03:13 19 Sep 2018

...who do we reckon then? Hopefully a shorter, and more successful search than last time
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If we erect a statue of The Beat....
at 15:44 18 Sep 2018

....would we need to erect any others for some of our other great players?

Appreciate these legends when they are still alive, we are lucky to have so many around int he community and the football club still
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Brentford striker Neal Maupay has scored more goals than us this season
at 09:45 18 Sep 2018

And he had a 3 game ban for stamping on a Villa player that was missed by the ref at the time.

Maupay - 7 goals in 5 games
ITFC - 6 goals in 8 games in all competitions (5 in 7 in the league)
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Paul Hurst at Shrewsbury
at 09:37 18 Sep 2018

When he came in he started like this:

DWLLDWWLLLD so 12 points from first 11 games

And then things seemed to click

19 points from next 9 games

And then a poor run

DDLLLL

Followed by an average end to the season

8 points from 5 games

Hopefully we go on a good run soon, but he is a manager at least who has shown he can arrest a slide in results and turn bad runs into good runs
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Blue Monday podcast - Kevin Beattie special
at 08:07 18 Sep 2018

Well worth an hour of anyones time. I've just finished it and some of the descriptions from Dave seem so vivid it is great for a (relative....!) youngster to the Beat in his pomp.



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Duxford Air Museum
at 22:12 17 Sep 2018

Looking for something to do for my boys 2nd birthday, is there enough to do there at that age?

He loves planes and helicopters but just not sure if it is more educational than fun
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Going down.....
at 08:50 16 Sep 2018

.....if things don't start to click soon then we are going to be in League 1 next season, I'm not sure how anyone who has seen us can disagree with that.

Yesterday was incredibly poor, I thought the team selection was decent enough all things considered and knowing what we knew but it just didn't work as the players played poorly - shirking responsibility on the ball from front to back.

Hurst and Chambers have come out and said that we aren't playing like we are training, and Hurst's comments after the game seemed very honest and well considered but also seemed to come across as a beaten man, like a manager presiding over a team with 7 games left on the bottom of the league - not 7 games gone.

We just do not try and play the ball, we hit so many long balls - the pattern of the play yesterday just saw the midfielders pass the ball back to the defenders, and the defenders launch it long either diagnolly to the wingers where their full backs won everything, or to the CBs who won everything (Did Walters win more than a couple of headers all day?)[Just looked up - between the back 5 we hit 67 long balls, of which 20 were accurate]

When the CBs had the ball, our midfielders do try and create angles to receive the ball but they don't get it passed to them, and then when they do it is so alow and cumbersome by that point the real option is to go back to the CBs as they have so many markers around them they can't take it on and do something positive.

Downes seemed to hide after his mistake which didn't help. Nolan seems a yard behind where he needs to be, but in fairness to him he makes some decent runs in between the lines but no-one looks to find him - some of the very little decent passages of passing generally involved him or Graham being found early and to feet - but it just doesn't happen enough.

And this high intensity pressing game......we very rarely commit more than 1 or 2 to the press which is utterly pointless - they were very easily passed through by a poor Hull side and we were overrun for the majority of the game.

Hurst has made far too many changes to the squad, the money coming in from the sales has made his eyes light up and I think he has underestimated the quality of this league, and recruited poorly in a few cases.

He needs to settle on a team too, this feels like the bad old days of Keano where you would turn up to the game without a clue on how we will set up. Players that have played well like Donacien and Edun get binned off, a goalkeeper who is having a rocky patch but is a proven top performer at this level is dropped as one of 6 changes for a local derby.

Hurst needs to be a bit more humble, lean on the experience and quality of Bart, Skuse, Chambers etc and get them fully on side. He needs to have some consistency with his decision making and this is what I feared when you see the size of the squad - that 25 players have played this season and it is the middle of September looks like a manager trying to through enough mud against the wall hoping something sticks or that he stumbles across something.

I still think Hurst can turn this around - but he needs to have the courage of his convictions and settle down.

Too many of the decisions in regards to the transfers and the changes to the team can be argued that in isolation they make sense - but the big picture with regards to recruitment and selection is a mess at the moment.

It won't get any easier on Tuesday, but I'm hopeful that it can be the start of the season beginning to settle down and pick up some points - or Hurst's neck will be on the chopping block come October
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Dreadful today
at 22:20 15 Sep 2018

From start to finish - slow, ponderous long ball footy. Cut open at will by Hull.

Hurst needs to sort it out fast, he doesn’t seem to know what he is doing at the moment
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When Hurst talks about importance of fitness and being up to speed..
at 14:25 13 Sep 2018

...and in fairness goes into great detail on it - how on earth did Jordan Graham start against Norwich?!
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Ipswich Town Premier League Transfers in today's money...
at 09:17 13 Sep 2018

http://www.eadt.co.uk/sport/premier-league-transfers-for-ipswich-town-1-5691989

Ian Marshall, Steve Sedgeley and Geraint Williams for a combined £40m...
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Relegation 6 pointer on Saturday then (n/t)
at 10:53 12 Sep 2018

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No news on Donacien as yet then....
at 21:03 11 Sep 2018

I could see this dragging on for ages and having to leave someone out every week
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Couple of bits of youth football news....
at 09:37 11 Sep 2018

....neither particularly relevant to ITFC but thought I'd share anyway.

Charlton have just lost Jeremy Sarmiento, who looks absolute class and is an England team mate of Ben Knight, to Benfica. I'd imagine they will have picked up a fee of about £100k with no top ups coming due to him going abroad. This is what Evans was talking about in his piece last week - if players go abroad, tribunal costs go out the window so you really are over a barrel.

The England age group of 2002 born have seen a huge number of 'transfers' already:

Matthew Bondswell - Nottm Forest to RB Leipzig
Rafael Garcia - Fulham to Everton
Sam Greenwood - Sunderland to Arsenal
Ben Knight - Ipswich to Man City
Noni Madueke - Tottenham to PSV
Louie Moulden - Liverpool to Man city
Charlie McCann - Coventry to Man Utd
Armstrong Okoflex - Arsenal to Celtic
Jeremy Sarmiento - Charlton to Benfica
Benni Smales-Braithwaite - Man City to Southampton
Daniel Jinadu - Chelsea to West Ham

And seems to be plenty more in the pipeline. Players moving to 'lesser' clubs when big clubs want them for opportunities, players moving to better academies, players going abroad - this is likely to be more common going forwards.

Also, Marcelo Flores played for Arsenal against Palace this weekend so presumbaly this has completed. Someone who was there text me to tell me that he is 'very, very good'. Frustrating.

And in stranger news, all EFL clubs have to have at least one player in their matchday squad who has come through the academy at the club as part of a new rule.

On the bench for Peterborough this weekend was 41 year old goalkeeping coach Mark Tyler (those of you who used to play Champ Man will remember him) as their designated youth player
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The Labour party....
at 08:11 11 Sep 2018

....I made this mkistake of falling down the Labour rabbit hole on Social Media, it is like rubber necking at an accident site. Absolute carnage on there.

So much in-fighting and disagreements and re-writing of history.

Clair achieved nothing - Sure Start was Tessa Jowell, Minimum Wage was Gordon Brown, etc..............but of course everything bad was solely down to Blair.

Any MP who speaks out about Corbyn or anti-semitism they are trying to get deselected - including someone who won Canterbury for first time (by 186 votes) in forever - although this was all down to Momentum's campaigning and not the candidate at all of course.

Chuka has said that the likes of McDonnell need to 'call off the dogs', you know that common saying.....apparently it means he has called members out as actual dogs. You couldn't make it up.

It would be funny if it wasn't so serious, how do they expect to win an election? All they talk about is how many members they now have as though that is what will win it for them.

I don't understand why being centrist has become such a bad thing, surely most people are or am I just wrong? The nutters I see on both sides of the divide can't be representative of normal people surely? Why don't people want what was New Labour, don't they realise compromises had to be made by likes of Blair and Brown to push through all the reform they did for the poorest people in the country?

It's all very student politics out there, and if there was a GE called now, the Tory party would increase their majority.
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WIth Birmingham news, and now this....
at 21:05 10 Sep 2018

....it might not be the worst year to have a terrible season

https://www.theboltonnews.co.uk/sport/16833145.bolton-wanderers-could-be-in-admi
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