Cole Skuse hails Brett Pitman’s prowess in front of goal

Brett Pitman scores the winner for Ipswich Town in the Ipswich Town v Reading (Championship) footbal

Brett Pitman scores the winner for Ipswich Town in the Ipswich Town v Reading (Championship) football match at Portman Road, Ipswich, on 02 February 2016. Picture: Steve Waller - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

Brett Pitman’s predatory instinct in front of goal has come as no surprise to midfielder Cole Skuse, who hailed his former lodger as the best finisher he’s played with.

The former Bournemouth forward moved level with Daryl Murphy at the top of the Blues’ scoring charts with an 89th-minute winner against Reading on Tuesday night – his eighth of the season and his second late winner of the year following his 90th-minute strike against Leeds in January.

Statistically, Pitman is the most prolific of the Ipswich strikers as he averages a goal every 214 minutes, compared to 269 for Murphy and 415 for Sears, having played 430 minutes less than Murphy and a further 343 fewer than Sears.

Pitman lodged with Skuse for six weeks following his move to Suffolk in the summer and, while the midfielder was delighted when his former Bristol City teammate found a home of his own, he was grateful the striker’s winner ensured the penalty he gave away in the clash with the Royals didn’t cost Ipswich dearly.

“Pits has popped up for the winner and I owed him a massive thank you and congratulations, but I think that’s his payback for living with me for six weeks at the start of the season,” Skuse said.

“He’s a top lad, I don’t have a bad word to say about him really and he’s come off the bench a few times to save us.

“He’s probably the best finisher I’ve played with actually, even when we were at Bristol City when we first signed him he was class, and for sure the best finisher I’ve played with.

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“He’s tried his utmost to miss this one but he’s squeezed it in.

“Of course you’d rather be five or six up but it’s a very rare occasion that we’d do that, so it’s great that Pits popped up with the winner.”

The win over Reading was Town’s 16-straight home success on a Tuesday night, with Skuse unable to put his finger on why the Blues are so consistent under the Portman Road floodlights.

“I would love to tell everyone but don’t want to give too much away,” he said.

“It’s one of those things really, at Portman Road under the lights it always seems like a special occasions.

“I know the manager really likes it under the lights here and we’ve managed to get a little run together on a Tuesday night.

“I don’t know what the special ingredient is but it’s something which is working for us.

“It’s a nice little omen for us.”

Next up for the Blues is a visit to QPR on Saturday.

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