Sunday Snap: ‘Kettering Cafu’ channels his inner Carlos, the final Jump and ranking Town’s four goals
- Credit: Pagepix
Ipswich Town beat Blackpool 4-1 yesterday. ANDY WARREN looks at the events surrounding the game.
Following his energetic display against Bristol Rovers in the Carabao Cup, I’ve been looking at ways of implementing a ‘Kettering Cafu’ nickname for captain Luke Chambers.
He was up and down the right flank that day but, despite consistently good performances in all three thirds since, his attacking play hasn’t quite hit the heights they did that day and the nickname’s been held back. You can’t just chuck it out after any old game.
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But the moniker doesn’t accurately describe the Northamptonshire-born Town skipper’s display in this game.
He was solid defensively, good on the ball and produced a raking cross-field ball which laid on Gwion Edwards’ second goal of the afternoon to secure the win. It was pin-point accuracy.
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But without doubt the centrepiece of his game was his foray forwards on 16 minutes, which ended with a stunning strike which curled into the top of the net when it was easier to lash over the bar. He’s since told team-mates it’s the best goal he’s ever scored and comes just three games after he suggested, at Bristol Rovers, that goals at the back stick will soon come for him.
It was less Cafu, though. More Roberto Carlos.
But if the Ipswich skipper is going to earn real comparisons to the legendary Brazilian left-back, he’s going to need to deliver on the free-kick’s he’s said to fancy.
Chambers’ rocket of a shot wasn’t the only bang to go off during the early stages of the game at Bloomfield Road.
Just a few minutes after the skipper had hit the net, a loud bang shook the stadium as members of the media, staff and players alike looked to the skies wondering what on worth was going.
To cut a long, not hugely interesting, story short, anyone setting off fireworks in the middle of the day needs to take a long, hard look at themselves.
Unless, that is, it was a rogue Ipswich fans celebrating the captain’s strike.
Gwi on target
This wasn’t just the Chambers show. Far from it.
Edwards showed exactly what he can do from the left flank in this game, terrorising his man inside and out and finishing superbly for two excellent goals.
We’ve heard so many times how his preferred position is on the left, where he did so much damage during his time at Peterborough, to the extent we’ve probably heard that more often in interviews than we have seen it on the pitch.
He’s now top of Town’s scoring charts but, according to the man himself, he wasn’t exactly wearing his shooting boots in training this week as team-mates ribbed him for the amount of chances he missed.
He did the business where it counts, though. Long may it continue.
While we’re on the subjecct of Town’s four excellent goals in this game, here’s how I’d rank them. I like ranking things.
1) Edwards’ second - A feel this might not fit with the general consensus of the rankings but I loved this goal. Chambers’ pass is perfect, Edwards’ first touch is sublime and the finish comprehensive. The whole thing pulled off with precision.
2) Chambers - What a strike from the skipper, certainly worthy of top spot, but on this occasion it’s second.
3) Bishop - Good pressure from Judge, tricky run from Bishop and a good finish. We want more and more of these from Bishop - it’s great to see him playing so confidently.
4) Edwards’ first - last, but by no means least, the Welshman’s first goal was a clever finish but you have to question the keeper here (as well as the BBC Lancs commentator who continued to insist it hit the side-netting even as the Town players celebrated).
Ipswich only took senior goalkeepers Tomas Holy and David Cornell to the North West, with youngster Albert White usually warming up with the stoppers but not attending this time.
But if there had been a last-minute emergency, there was someone on hand who could have potentially deputised.
No, not kit man James Pullen, a former keeper for both Town and Blackpool with a good amount of league experience. Town media man Jacob Henderson.
He plucked a Tomas Holy kick out of the sky masterfully during the warm-up, showing he has the safest of safe hands. It deserved more recognition that it got from Cornell, who was in close proximity.
Being serious for a second, I’m not convinced Jacob, who turned 25 this week, could hack it as a League One goalkeeper. Sorry, mate.
James Wilson’s performances often go under the radar. He’s solid, dependable but doesn’t always catch the eye while getting the job done.
But the lack of supporters inside the stadium has highlighted one of his secret weapons.
A long second-half ball over the top was destined for the foot of CJ Hamilton but, after a slight call of ‘pressure’ from the Town centre-back, the ball ended up in touch.
Wilson and Toto Nsiala’s partnership at the back is growing, leaving Luke Woolfenden with a job on his hands if he wants to make it back into the side.
It was sadly announced, during Town’s victory over Gillingham on Tuesday, that music legend Eddie van Halen had passed away at the age of 65.
Just a few minutes prior to the announcement, the Ipswich side had entered the pitch to his iconic track ‘Jump’ - which must have been played millions of times in venues all around the world since its release in 1984.
But it may well be that Portman Road was the last to belt out a song which will live forever, prior to the legend’s passing was announced.
If you exclude the 5-0 victory over Bolton’s kids (excluded from what’s to follow due to the unusual circumstances) last August, this was the first time Town had won by three or more goals away from home since the victory at Reading in April 2018.
So rare is this achievement that, in the wake of a miserable season on the road which resulted in relegation in 2018/19, muggins here agreed to eat a kilogram burrito from my favourite service station establishment the next time it happened. El Mexicana, I’m open to offers of sponsorship etc. Please contact my agent.
So, the next time we pass through Peterborough services and ‘El Mex’ is allowed to open due to virus restrictions, I shall be spending £9.99 on ‘La Beast’.
Oh, thanks to Chris Thorogood for remind both myself and Stuart Watson of this pledge. We’d completely forgotton about it.
Wish me luck.