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Cook: One of the Toughest Days I've Had in Management
at 21:33:42

I take issue with some of Paul Cook’s responses, which seem at times lost in a world of abstraction. For instance: “Then all of a sudden we just give goals away and at the minute it’s something we have to eradicate. There’ll be no criticism towards the players from me, none, I put the players on the pitch’. OK, classic Paul Cook, consistent or no. But to take just one selection decision today, assuming that Woolfenden was fit, how could it be justified to drop (and even remove from the match day squad) a defender who (i) has clearly been growing into the role this season, (ii) has thus far been rare consistent presence in the defence, (iii) offers the footballing ability to bring the ball out of defence (especially useful given our misfiring defensive midfield), and (iv) at least appears to be match fit. His omission today was at best an extremely poor decision.
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Dyer: I Agree With Tyrone, Johnson and Patel Hypocrites
at 16:40:32

Well said, Kieron Dyer. Lucid, measured, and devastatingly accurate. What Tyrone actually said in his tweet is surely the wisest thing to appear so far in this debate. Referencing the Home Secretary’s responses, these were his words: ‘You don’t get to stoke the fire at the beginning of the tournament by labelling our anti-racism message as ‘Gesture Politics’ and then pretend to be disgusted when the very thing we’re campaigning against happens’. As (Tory) MP Johnny Mercer put it, the painful truth is that Tyrone Mings is absolutely right.
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Dozzell's QPR Move Confirmed
at 16:37:48

Probably for the best, Andre included. He is far from the finished article, but Warburton and his team have a talented young player with plenty to build on. As a side note, I have been concerned at the position our younger players have found themselves in the recent past (Dozzell, Downes, and Woolfenden, McGavin too). Lambert was not overly generous to them - in fact often the opposite, when ‘established’ players seemed to be getting off quite lightly after regularly abject performances. As for Cook, I can understand his frustrations with the team - but as for the group of youngsters I still feel that most of them should have been improvable within the ITFC system. As a club we seem to have lost the knack of getting them to the next stage. I would be delighted to see especially Woolfenden, McGavin, and Dobra able to light Portman Road up next season.
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Town Confirm Burns Signing
at 19:28:42

Excellent signing. Unlike what we’ve to watch (home and away courtesy of iFollow) this guy is class.
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Town Closing in On Fleetwood Forward Burns
at 15:49:20

He seems to me to be a more than useful player, with plenty of pace and skill on the ball. If KVY could keep fit then a player like Burns ahead of him could make for a real threat on the right flank. Partnerships work. I still smile when I think of Taricco and Mason in the same team. Let’s hope that this Burns story comes to fruition.
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Chambers: A Fantastic Journey
at 00:39:53

Many thanks are owed to Luke Chambers. Too many of Town’s managers opted for negativity by reverting to playing him at right back - how odd that with such a large squad right back never seemed to be a management priority (KVY, though in his case hardly having played so far, apart). As for Chambers, he can rightly be proud of his many contributions to our club. A quality defender, especially at centre back. A fine captain. An excellent ream mate, respected throughout the game. A lot of stuff has been thrown at the players lately. Some justified. But a lot of it has served to deflect from managerial deficiencies (too early to judge PC). But surely all can agree that Luke Chambers was wholly committed to the cause, at all times. All the very best, mate.
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Waghorn Linked With Town Return
at 16:35:30

Similar to Norwood. Er, really? I have no idea about his recent form, but Waghorn was a proven class act when he was here - though admittedly even in a MM setup he had better support than Norwood has so far had. And he could take a brilliant set piece - compare the mostly sub-standard efforts of Edwards, Dozzell and even Judge this year.
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Ipswich Town 0-0 MK Dons - Match Report
at 18:03:13

As fans we have long experience of the mostly unimpressive performances of Lambert’s teams. The manager is clearly crucial to a club’s success. But surely we have to cut Paul Cook some slack. What can he do but try to get up to speed with what he has been bequeathed by the old regime. He has maintained, and perhaps improved, defence solidity. As for the disaster areas of creativity and striking nous, the earlier substitutions (i.e. with the greatest chance of having an influence) mostly emphasised the scale of the problem, as Sears and Judge were woeful. Trying to be optimistic, two thoughts. For a first game back, Downes was surprisingly sharp and effective. And Nydam’s cameo performance really outshone the best that Dozzell seems able to offer. We do have some good players at the club, who can improve further. But they need reinforcements that bring in greater pace, physicality, and presence. That requires serious investment and serious thought about the type of players needed to make ITFC thrive once again. Here’s hoping!
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Cook: We Never Looked Like Losing But Didn't Look Like Scoring the Goals to Win It
at 19:36:20

‘I watch the games as a fan’. Then he would have seen that the our midfielders play like strangers. The Rochdale midfield - ok, a low bar perhaps - were different class. Clearly Jackson is not a footballer - everyone, however limited, gets goal side of him, and he does not understand when you can let the ball run - but the poor guy had such poor service. Sorry to say it, but Even the strengths of Dozell seem to have been lost. Bishop - tired? Judge - a patchy contributor who sees no structure. I have no idea what seems to be wrong with, say, Huws, but is his passing and movement - and physicality, for God’s sale - worse than Dozell’s and Bishop’s? Cook really needs to get a grip. At the very least the substitutes should have been given the s
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Town Takeover Close
at 18:13:59

I’m surprised that so many posters seem to see this news (such as it is) as grounds for total celebration. Yes, the club is in a seriously worryingly state. But there are potential avenues for an owner to squeeze profit out of it. Take Portman Road. Just a few years ago, the possibility was raised of the club (under ME) buying it. OK, it didn’t happen. But the real estate has obvious development potential. And local government has had the life all but squeezed out of it especially in the last decade. Who knows whether the Council, under doubtless pressure from many sides, might have to accede to an offer to purchase the freehold in the future. One of Town’s glories is a town centre ground. I for one would be extremely sad if we were to end up in some flat-pack affair in a remote corner like Pride Park or the Riverside.
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Takeover Talk
at 18:20:51

I have to admit that I don’t know how the present ITFC indebtedness is precisely structured. But a large part of numerous US-led takeovers in British football has often involved a loading of indebtedness onto the target club through its holding company structuring. So it’s not a win-win panacea by any means (quite apart from issues arising down the road if the club continues its footballing decline). It’s never easy to compare like with like. But Swansea City has had a difficult time. Its supporters trust holdings were greatly reduced when the majority shareholders sold to US investors (admittedly the club’s financial position could not at the time be compared with ours). But the Swans were relegated two years later amid much acrimony over the level of financial commitment the new owners seemed willing to make. That said, things are turning round there - they are well managed, but are still constantly having to sell their high value players. Again, our situation very different in these respects. If anything comes of this, as much information as possible in the public domain will be key to how excited or nervous fans should be.
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McGavin Could Join Ndaba at Ayr United
at 15:34:38

McGavin, as well as a good passer of the ball, has a good physical presence for such a young player. I find it hard to see how he is still rated behind others in midfield. And I think he has serious potential especially in the holding role. Still, I am not sure that the manager rates him - despite the generally pretty unimpressive midfield performances from more senior players this season. So it may be good for him to go out on loan for now. Maybe he can return next season and claim a starting place. Hopefully in a team picked by a new manager.
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O'Neill: Lambert's Job is Safe
at 12:38:16

The Guardian website has just loaded a thoughtful and seemingly well-researched article by Nick Ames: ‘Paul Lambert battles for Ipswich future at a ghost club in rapid decline’. Among many other things it includes reference to the intemperate banning of Phil Ham. For some reason the description ‘ghost club in rapid decline’ has struck me as chilling but apposite. I admit that I was unhappy with Mick McCarthy (and his attitude) in the latter part of his tenure. His football may have been excruciating to watch, but his teams were well organised, he could be flexible during matches, and there’s no denying his achievement of reasonable results. Compare the chaos and incoherence now. The chairman needs to make a decision soon - if this season is as crucial as we all believe. He might feel that our not being at matches keeps the pressure off. But, even if second best, very many fans are watching our season unfold on ifollow, and it has made for ugly viewing.
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Lambert: We Kept Knocking and Got the Rewards
at 23:06:39

So Shrewsbury got everybody behind the ball did they? Well, given our tortuous build-up - mainly through Nsiala and McGuinness (yes, really) - that’s fairly easy to do. We were second best out there for much of the match. Sears, Lankester, Jackson, Judge - all played out of position. As for McGavin - according to the manager taking such exception to the interviewer’s mild attempt at positivity, apparently some things he’s got to improve on 100 times. Odd that. At least until he - hardly surprising - tired, he seemed to be our best player on the field. It looks like he’s getting the Woolfenden treatment. Classic Lambert. All this, and we have nothing to offer but an inflexible 4-3-3, with square pegs in round holes. As a manager Lambert is up there with Jewell and Hurst. But at least they were concerned, seeing things for what they were, whereas Lambert’s comments seem detached from reality. Sad times indeed.
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Lincoln City 1-0 Ipswich Town - Match Report
at 17:19:24

Negative throughout. No pace. Using three indifferent footballers (Holy, Nsiala, Wilson) seemingly as playmakers. (What's that all about?). And a manager who is an embarrassment to Ipswich Town Football Club. A poor performance farcically turned into a bad day.
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Dobra on Target as U23s Draw at Cardiff
at 17:10:45

Overall, an enjoyable game in which Town looked positive and pressed throughout. Armando Dobra's goal was sharp and clinical. Cardiff though had a solid central defence and lively full backs, which made it difficult to service Tyreece Simpson adequately - though he offered a constant threat. Brett McGavin's physical presence and (even!) quick feet mark him out as quite a prospect. All in all, Town were well worth a draw, and were a shade unlucky with the somewhat messy goal conceded.
Blog
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The Story Behind the Billy Kee Banner
at 11:08:53

Superb effort lads. And a great post.
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Lambert: There Would Have Been No Complaints If We'd Won 4-2
at 22:02:16

Well played Town. This was even better than midweek at Ashton Gate. We have developed an imaginative, footballing midfield. And at long last we have footballers playing at full back. Of course there are problems still to work on, especially our goal scoring potential. Like any fan I'm sad that we are likely to be relegated. But we are playing good football - with a manager who doesn't see every game as a 'proper scrap'. Most of all, I'm proud of my club again. Lambert is doing well. Up the Town.
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Ipswich Town 1-2 Reading - Match Report
at 19:53:07

Herfie - after an especiacially bad day for us all, with few plus points, your post has brought back some perspective, and in my case a smile ...

Now the half-time air was sweet perfume
Though lambert'd played a defensive tune
We all got up to dance
Oh, but we never got the chance ...

Next season will be better (surely?)


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Comment
Ipswich Town 0-1 Sheffield Wednesday - Match Report
at 00:15:37

Perhaps as a seemingly deluded football fan who wants to enjoy both the modern game and his team, I thought that Paul Hurst would bring an improvement, and then thought the same about Paul Lambert. Overall, we have mostly played better football this season - better, anyway, than the desperately dull fare on offer the past few seasons. But otherwise the picture is more negative - the tactical sterility has if anything got worse. We have struggled for instance at full back (again) all season. So why not try 3 at the back and use wing backs? - that would especially suit Kenlock (or even Elder) and probably now Emmanuel (or Donacien pre-loaning back to Stanley). In midfield, Bishop (such a talent) should surely be a regular starter, and now we have Judge then in order to maximise his influence he must surely be more central. Few strikers at this level make for natural midfielders. So especially in our present plight Sears if he plays at all should partner Keane, or Harrison merits an extended run - though when fit preferably Lankester. Dual strikers at least would offer greater threat than the present system can. We are likely to be relegated, so if if we are allowed to look for a miracle the only hope surely is to try 3-5-2 or even 4-4-2. But one up front? No chance. Lambert needs to take a long hard look at his inflexible tactical approach. Consistency can often be justified, but it is not an absolute value, especially with results as bad as they are. As a Town fan in a mixed family with Norwich City fans I look forward to next week's game still with expectation but with little hope.
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