Fuller Flavour: Bishop can be a star this season, but I’ve got plenty of concerns
Karl Fuller takes a look at Ipswich Town’s season-opening win over Wigan - a win which broke the TV curse and offered both postives and negatives.
For the first time in 17 games, we have finally won a game live on TV. Make a note of the date folks, as these days are very rare occasions.
You have to go back to December 12, 2015 to find our last victory – a 1-0 win at MK Dons. Before kick-off on Sunday, I tweeted some dismal facts relating to our recently-screened live games such as no wins in 16 games, no wins in 13 consecutive home games, no wins in eight Sunday games, no wins in eight 12pm kick-off’s and no wins ever in a game screened live on either of Sky’s Main Event or Football channels in 10 attempts.
The one exception to all of this was the last time that we won a TV game in the month of September was against Wigan Athletic (a 2-1 win on September 22, 2014). I held on to this small omen.
And, at the seventh attempt, Paul Lambert finally has a win under his belt to break his own curse in charge of Town when live on the box. I wasn’t in agreement with some of his post-match comments. I certainly don’t think that we played as well as he made out, neither do I agree with his ‘first-class’ assessment of at least one of our centre-backs!
Wigan gave a good account of themselves given their precarious situation and on another day, they will have scored at least once before we opened the scoring. However, a win is a win and we have a great record in the last dozen years now of not losing on the opening days of the season as far as league games go.
Looking at the positives, it was good to see goals coming again from midfield and Teddy Bishop took his header well. I was at Bournemouth when he scored his first goal for the club and six years in between his two goals tells a story of too much time injured and I really hope he has all the luck in the world this season to steer clear of injury.
He will be a star player for us if that’s the case. A clean sheet with a makeshift defence is never a bad thing either. I just didn’t feel that we were as coherent as we were against Bristol Rovers, which may or may not tell us how poor they were. It might be a different story on Saturday when we face them in the league of course.
I was disappointed with the result against Arsenal’s Under 21’s a week ago. It was not as embarrassing as some fans have made out just because Arsenal’s side had an average age of 18.6. I mean, it’s not losing on national TV in the FA Cup against a non-league side territory but all the same, it was a result that was unwanted.
Any fan that was not bothered in the slightest at the result purely because of the competition that it came in needs to think for a moment, and I’ll take you back to an interview with David McGoldrick where he talked about his time at Ipswich as to why.
He said that there was never any real pressure at playing for Ipswich. If that’s the case, it tells me that there might have been a lack of a winning mentality with some players.
If the current crop saw some social media comments after last Tuesday’s game by some fans that couldn’t care less, then why should they? The fans are emotionally invested in results. I simply want us to win every game regardless of the competition.
If I do not have a winning mentality as a fan, then I could not expect those not emotionally invested, i.e. the players to care either. Being out of the EFL trophy sooner rather than later might help our cause for success in the league, but when did being out of cup competitions to help us concentrate on the league last work in our favour?
And anyone who says that the EFL Trophy is a Mickey Mouse competition – well my answer to that would be that Mickey Mouse made a lot of money for Walt Disney!
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