Fuller Flavour: Evans, Lambert and Town players all need to shoulder some blame for bad run – now they have to turn it around
- Credit: Archant
Saturday was FA Cup Third Round day. This usually translates as a day of embarrassment for us Ipswich fans and true to form, we had another such day in the debacle at Exeter, writes Karl Fuller.
That said, the result will please all those Town fans that have boycotted our games in the EFL Trophy this season and wanted us to be out of it as quickly as possible. We really can concentrate on the league now.
Not only were we beaten - but we lined up with a strong side going up against an Exeter outfit who made 10 changes and were weaker than their usual team. That we still failed to win heaps more concern on our already stressed minds.
We've heard about how the players have had frank discussions after recent games, about what they're doing wrong and how they are going to pull things around and to be brutally honest, I've had enough of all the talk now.
It's cheap and there is no sign yet of things getting any better.
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I read on Friday how a win against Exeter would see us just two wins away from a Wembley final and how the fans would enjoy a day out at Wembley.
With this current crop, the only day we'll get at Wembley is if the non-league side Wembley FC get into the first round of the FA Cup next season and we somehow manage to draw them away!
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Of course, another much-changed line-up was not going to help us on Saturday. Yet again, a mix thrown together in the hope that they blend instantly was about as much as Paul Lambert could hope for.
Whilst cohesive play was never going to be the order of the day, the side that played should have been capable of winning.
What an awful ten plus years we've had as Town fans. And the common denominator over that time has been Marcus Evans. Between him, Lambert and the players, they all need to shoulder some responsibility of the current malaise we find ourselves in.
But there's the conundrum as to how we get out of this rut. Many would like to see Evans go. The club has been on a downward spiral under just about his whole ownership but where would the club be without him?
Lambert's rotations and refusal, along with his coaching staff, to acknowledge that we are not on just a 'blip' is enough to have fans also calling for his head. Yet his reward from Evans for a run of one win in 15 games is a new five-year contract.
Many players are getting criticised for their inept performances, but they're not playing as a regular XI to be able to settle together and look like a team of individuals.
How on earth can we expect any real answers to deal with so many questions without some semblance of order? It is pure mayhem caused by an all-round slapdash approach.
I keep hearing how vital it is to get out of League One at the very first attempt. Can any of you realistically see that happening as things stand?
On Sunday, I found myself thinking back to this time last year. Even though there were four months left to the end of the season as we were slipping into certain relegation, the mood on the terraces was up, crowd numbers were up and the thought of a new era to potentially finally wake us from our slumber gave renewed hope of better times ahead.
By the end of the season, fans were singing "every little thing's gonna be alright."
Season ticket sales increased and the mood going into this season was as good as could be expected. The caveat to Lambert's excellent PR work would be how we started the new season.
The honeymoon period was over, and the season got off to a very good start. Those days are long gone now, and my fear is a rapid decline in attendances and return to the apathy about the place two years ago.
This next month needs to see a settled side given a run and a vast improvement. Otherwise, another year in League One beckons!