Should Jonathan Douglas have been sent off? Five talking points following Birmingham City 3 Ipswich Town 0
10:00 24 January 2016
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We take a look at the talking points coming out of Ipswich Town’s 3-0 defeat away at Birmingham City.
You can lose 3-0 and still play pretty well
It was by no means a vintage Ipswich Town performance, but the Blues certainly didn’t deserve to lose 3-0 at St Andrew’s.
After being second best in the first half, during which they slipped a goal behind and lost Jonathan Douglas to a red card, the Blues came out at the start of the second half and were on the front foot, creating chances without ever overly testing Tomasz Kuszczak and on top of their hosts.
That all changed when Jon Toral superbly volleyed home an unstoppable second, which gave the 10 men a near impossible deficit to fight back from, although they were again positive and looked to attack.
The Blues made some good chances and failed to take them, while they were made to pay for some shoddy defending for Will Buckley’s opener, where they had plenty of chances to clear.
Red cards change games
While the above is all worthy of discussion, it’s the decision to send off Douglas which changed the game and will be the enduring talking point
The Irishman left the floor as he launched into the tackle but it certainly wasn’t two footed and the contact perhaps looked worse than it was. Had a yellow card been shown instead, neither side would have complained too hard, although the way Douglas flew into the challenge certainly gave the referee every reason to send him off.
Maybe a bit of self control in the middle of the pitch on the verge of half-time would have been a better course of action for Douglas to take.
Either way it changed the game and now means the Blues will have to do without Douglas, leaving the door ajar for homegrown midfielder Luke Hyam to earn himself a regular place in the side.
Sloppy defending will always cost you
Not for the first time this season, Ipswich have been punished for failing to clear and for sloppy defending inside their own box.
This time, Douglas and Tommy Smith couldn’t clear convincingly before Dean Gerken bailed them out with a good save, but Will Buckley for there to tap home.
The Blues need to cut out the errors at the back and stop giving themselves a mountain to climb by slipping behind in games.
Fraser was the bright spark
The Scottish winger was at the heart of everything the Blues did at St Andrew’s but, despite also having a number of chances, couldn’t find the net.
Fraser was quick, tricky and direct as he battled with Paul Caddis down the Town left, showing just why he is so highly thought of at both Portman Road and parent club Bournemouth.
Away fans come out of this one with credit
Just a few days after 800 hardy souls trekked to the south coast on a cold Tuesday night for the FA Cup exit at Portsmouth, close to 2,000 fans kept cheering for their team even when all was lost.
On what seemed a rather flat afternoon at St Andrew’s, the away support at times outshined the 16,000 home fans, even though, in truth, they had very little to sing about.
What got you talking?