POV: Cambridge United – 04/10/2022 by scants_itfc_88 – Ipswich Town Blog

POV: Cambridge United – 10/04/2022
Written by scans_itfc_88 on Wednesday, October 05, 2022 09:50 AM

Another record set directly at Portman Road!

A lot of people would have been nervous before this one. Cambridge are one of those teams who, despite their position in the middle of the table, take points from the top teams in the division. They did that last year and we all know how Ipswich fared against them in both games.

That nervousness would normally have been amplified in the 70th minute when the scoreboard still showed 0-0 despite Town having 75 per cent possession.

But as we know, this season is another story. I was convinced that Town would find a way out of the impasse. I didn’t necessarily expect three goals at that time and if the opener had come earlier the score could have exploded.

Let’s give Cambridge some credit for starters. Mark Bonner set up his team to frustrate and try to take out what would have been a good point from the Portman Road fortress.

For long periods of play it worked. They wasted time early on and rarely ventured into our final third. They locked us in a pack and prevented us from playing the last ball in the middle.

We created chances, but nowhere near as many as we’ve seen in other games this season. It was more a reflection on Cambridge than Ipswich.

The first half saw us create plenty of space, but the ever-lethal Wes Burns wasn’t quite at his best last night and we didn’t take the opportunity to extend the pitch. They realized this second half and closed the wide areas better.

There was always a chance Cambridge would try to score a goal on the counter attack, but they never got close enough to our goal for that to happen. Thanks to our three backs for their performances last night. Especially George Edmundson who had his best game this season for me.

Christian Walton had extremely little to do in goal. I really enjoy watching Walton at his best, but I’m more than happy when he’s not seen much in games.

Kieran McKenna made some changes to his starting XI and there were some raised eyebrows at Lee Evans who fell to the bench. I saw it as the perfect tactical change considering the game he knew we were going to.

There is no doubting the quality of Evans and what he brings to the team, but stopping the counterattacks and reading the interceptions I think Dom Ball has the advantage. I think that’s exactly why he got the nod last night. It also meant that when we needed to unlock a tiring Cambridge in the final 30 minutes, we could call on Evans whose passing range began to stretch the team. I would expect us to see Evans alongside Morsy again on Saturday at Morecambe.

Again, this isn’t a reflection on Ball, who looked a class above when he played, but they do offer something slightly different. It’s great that we have the possibility to rotate according to the opponents we are facing.

The substitutions made by McKenna have once again shown what a high quality manager he is. I’ve only asked them once this season – in every other game they’ve been perfect. You sensed that, despite the quality we had on the pitch in the attacking areas, the goal wasn’t going to come without some fresh footwork to hurt a tiring Cambridge.

It was these substitutes who scored all the goals last night. Lee Evans threw a nice wide pass to Marcus Harness, who had changed sides with the withdrawal of Wes Burns. He drove to the defender and delivered the cross.

The deflection was a bit of luck, but it was forced by Town’s play. Tyreece John-Jules followed at the far post for his second goal of the season. He worked tirelessly at Portsmouth without reward, so it was great to see that balanced.

We saw the same thing last night from Freddie Ladapo, who, despite not scoring, had arguably his best game in a Town shirt. His strength and desire to win the ball high often kept Town in possession.

Perhaps an even more popular goalscorer this season than Ladapo was Town’s almost forgotten man. Kyle Edwards couldn’t earn his goal anymore. He didn’t think so, of course, but that didn’t matter. Sometimes that’s what you need to stand out.

A whipped cross from wide outside the box eluded everyone and curled into the top corner. You could see from the celebrations how much it meant to him.

He was a fan favorite when he started last season but has seen his career dwindle due to changes and injuries. It now appears to be an integral part of McKenna’s plans, albeit an impact sub to help kill matches.

As with most things in life, when you wait a long time for one thing, the second follows almost immediately. This one, he meant. A loose clearance from John-Jules’ cross rolled to the edge of the box and Edwards charged between two defenders and drove in with the outside of his right boot.

Town had gone from a frustrating 0-0 to a dominating 3-0 victory within 15 minutes. It could have been more if the Cambridge keeper hadn’t saved a decent effort from Sam Morsy on the edge of the box at 2-0.

I don’t think I’ve seen a side as tired after 90 minutes as Cambridge last night. They put in a valiant effort but in the end couldn’t resist one of the best teams in the division – yes, I think we can call Ipswich that this year. Even at 2-0 they were wasting time trying to get to the final whistle, there was no coming back in the game for them.

The only bad news of the night, if you can call it that, was that Plymouth picked up another three points against Sheffield on Wednesday. Nine points from a possible nine against Ipswich, Wycombe and Plymouth is a true statement of intent from Argyle. Maybe I need to adjust my comment from ten days ago that we won’t see them at the top at the end of the season. This means that the city remains second.

The positive outlook on this is that the gap to Sheffield Wednesday in third is now four points, giving us a game buffer – something that could be crucial later on. Portsmouth have two games in hand though, so we’ll be looking for them to drop points so the gap isn’t closed.

Huge chance to pick up another three points against bottom of the table Morecambe on Saturday. It’s a game Town will surely win given the quality the opposition lack. I’m aiming for the biggest league win of the season so far at 5-0.

Town of Uppa

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Europablue added 11:02 – Oct 5

It’s good that the supporters who have this feeling of inevitability are the opposition supporters. It’s hard to get out of the mentality of fearing the opposition. Sure, any team can beat anyone, but it always seemed like we were dropping points where we shouldn’t and the other teams were the ones finding the way to get results. Opposition supporters must look at us and our results with a sense of dread.
I’m much more concerned about the gap between us and third than winning the league. Plymouth are on a very hot streak, especially with the luck they had against us when they equalized when instead we should have had a blatant free-kick. I just don’t think Plymouth have the team to deal with injuries and fatigue like we do. At some point in the season Plymouth will go down a bit so I expect us to finish above us. I’m glad Wednesday is dropping points rather than Plymouth at this point.


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