Injury sparked Royle's switch

SERENDIPITOUS, perhaps, but Tommy Miller's injury prompted the change that led to victory over Leeds United.After struggling against a well-organised Leeds in the first half, Blues boss Joe Royle switched from a 4-4-2 to 4-3-3 replacing Miller, who has an injured elbow, with Dean Bowditch in the 48th minute.

By Derek Davis

SERENDIPITOUS, perhaps, but Tommy Miller's injury prompted the change that led to victory over Leeds United.

After struggling against a well-organised Leeds in the first half, Blues boss Joe Royle switched from a 4-4-2 to 4-3-3 replacing Miller, who has an injured elbow, with Dean Bowditch in the 48th minute.

The new look worked and three minutes later the Blues were ahead through Darren Bent.


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Royle said: “The first half for us was a non-event. They came with a game-plan and it worked with five across midfield and made it hard for us.

“We had no rhythm or togetherness as a team and we only had half an opportunity in the first half, which is not like us.

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“With Tommy Miller's injury I had already made up my mind we were going to go with three up front. That pushed them back as we went system for system.”

United used a system that comprised five in midfield when Ipswich had the ball and three up front when they had possession making life difficult for the Blues engine room to get going.

Royle warned: “We are going to see a lot like that here. There are going to be a lot of tight games because very few are going to come here and take us on. We have said if we do keep clean sheets then we will have a great chance because we usually score.”

Royle praised a defence that kept its third clean sheet in four games and he added: “The first goal here is now becoming so important. We saw that with Burnley when we spent 70 minutes trying to get back and also when we went behind against Plymouth.”

Town will be without Darren Bent, Dean Bowditch and Shefki Kuqi for training, as all are away on international duty this week

derek.davis@eadt.co.uk

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