Ipswich Town Fans’ jury: A point is the best Blues can hope for at Preston, say our panel

Town players before kick-off in the Cardiff match. Picture: Steve Waller www.stephenwaller.com

Town players before kick-off in the Cardiff match. Picture: Steve Waller www.stephenwaller.com - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

We have assembled a group of Town fans to predict the outcome of Ipswich games and have their say on what’s going on at Portman Road.

Ipswich Town predictions league standings after the loss to Cardiff

Ipswich Town predictions league standings after the loss to Cardiff - Credit: Archant

Every week, our panel of Ipswich Town fans will make their predictions ahead of the Blues’ latest game, with three points awarded for a correct scoreline and one point given for a correct outcome.

We’ll keep a league table along the way, before crowning a winner at the end of the season.

Jack Prentice

While I predicted a draw, the 1-0 defeat to Cardiff was as tight as I expected and I see little different for the trip to Preston North End.

The Lilywhites have dispelled the myth from our friends in Norfolk about Alex Neil teams being unable to defend. They’re on a long unbeaten run that includes matches against Wolves and Aston Villa, and Town don’t like Deepdale.

It’s two wins in 11 for us and I feel that the focus now should be switched to developing younger players for next season. I don’t necessarily mean throwing out line ups such as the kindergarten one from Crystal Palace in August but the likes of Kenlock, Morris, Drinan and Nydam – all four travelling up to Lancashire – would benefit more than most from game time towards the end of this season.

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With all that in mind, I can’t see past Preston sadly. Prediction: Preston North End 2-0 Ipswich Town

Mick McCarthy has confirmed David McGoldrick will not play again this season. Picture: STEVE WALLER

Mick McCarthy has confirmed David McGoldrick will not play again this season. Picture: STEVE WALLER - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

José López Lerena

After last Wednesday’s night disappointing result, we are back in action this Saturday as Ipswich Town are traveling to Deepdale to face Preston North End in the last game of February.

We didn’t play bad at all against Cardiff City but there’s still some stuff to get sorted to improve our performance during the game, plus Garner and McGoldrick injuries could have given us a worrying lack of power attack.

Actually, being fair, the Lilywhites are flying high this season as they are currently based on the 9th position just four points away from play-off positions.

I’m not quite sure about what to expect from this game as last time we met then on November 4th we defeated them 3-0 at Portman Road… I’m afraid i’m going for a 1-1 draw (Celina) this time… Hopefully they will prove me wrong and pick up the three Points… Come On Ipswich! COYB! Prediction: Preston North End 1-1 Ipswich Town

Kieren Standley

This week has been a case of one step forward, two steps back for Town. The performances have been hot and cold, with defensive systems being deployed in both. I don’t expect Saturday’s trip to Deepdale to be any different as Town face a Preston side who are unbeaten in their last seven Championship games.

The Lilywhites are a much different proposition to the side that were completely annihilated by injuries ahead of their 3-0 defeat at Portman Road in November, slipping under the radar and rising to 9th in the league since.

I find it very difficult to have any confidence in Town, especially with the sheer lack of chances we are creating and the lack of goals being scored. If there is any positive to take into this game, it’s the fact Town may relish the opportunity to get away from a gloomy Portman Road again.

Just like Wednesday night, I expect this to be a tight affair, but I wouldn’t rule there being a few goals in this game. Sadly I’m gonna go with the home side to edge this one, purely for the reason of still having something to play for. I think Town are capable of running them close if they match their first half performances from the last two games, but I feel Alex Neil’s side will just have enough to take advantage of a confidence sapped Blues side. Prediction: Preston North End 2-1 Ipswich Town

Luke Hyam made his first league start for Ipswich Town in almost 20 months on Wednesday night. Photo

Luke Hyam made his first league start for Ipswich Town in almost 20 months on Wednesday night. Photo: Steve Waller - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

Seán Salter

Ipswich find themselves without a win in their last three games and I don’t expect this to change against Preston on Saturday. Mick McCarthy will no doubt make at least another four changes to his team, and I’m hoping that some of the younger players are given the nod over the likes of Kevin Bru.

Former Norwich manager Alex Neill will see this as an opportunity to narrow the gap between his Preston team and the top six. The Lilywhites are on a lengthy unbeaten run but will come against some stubborn resistance from Town.

In the days of the Football Pools coupons, this result would be a definite pick on your coupon. Prediction: Preston North End 1-1 Ipswich

The attendance against Cardiff was the lowest since September 1998. Picture: Steve Waller www.

The attendance against Cardiff was the lowest since September 1998. Picture: Steve Waller www.stephenwaller.com - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

Katy Sealy

To me this game has got draw written all over it. It’s going to be very tough as Preston are on a really good run but I thought we played well on Wednesday night so who knows what could happen! Spence, Celina and Ward pushing forward well but we just missed that end product.

It looks like we are set for another mid-table finish but I hope the fans can just get behind the players so we can try to enjoy our football again.

I saw a quote this week which expressed how the fans gave Wigan an extra lift and the extra 10% they needed to beat Man City. I completely understand that our fans are angry and upset but I wish they would accept that probably nothing is going to happen until the end of the season so just get behind the players and support our club positively. Prediction: Preston North End 1-1 Ipswich Town

Cardiff City's Kenneth Zohore celebrates scoring his side's goal. PA

Cardiff City's Kenneth Zohore celebrates scoring his side's goal. PA - Credit: PA

Alistair Rattry

Having recorded only two losses in the 19 games since their early November defeat at Portman Road, Preston are the low budget, high performing Championship side that Ipswich Town used to be kind of the benchmark for.

It therefore promises to be a tough afternoon for Town, particularly given the increasingly worrying issues in front of goal. The one chink of light is that, whilst Preston are tough to beat, they do record a lot of draws, which will likely suit McCarthy’s approach to the game too.

A further raft of changes, for a third game in seven days, seems likely and with it a potential return to 4-3-3. If Joe Garner fails to declare fit, it would be a good opportunity for Martyn Waghorn to play centrally and end his goal drought. Prediction: Preston North End 1-1 Ipswich Town

Kate Riley

Another nervy away trip with Preston in much better form than Ipswich. With Town only winning once in their last six and the news of David McGoldrick’s setback the week, I don’t hold out much hope. Sadly.

Ipswich to lose. Prediction: Preston North End 2-0 Ipswich Town

Martyn Waghorn wants Ipswich Town to make a fast start at Preston. Picture: STEVE WALLER

Martyn Waghorn wants Ipswich Town to make a fast start at Preston. Picture: STEVE WALLER - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

Joe Fairs

Preston are on an impressive run of form and I can’t see that ending on Saturday, we comfortably beat them 3-0 at Portman Road earlier in the season but this was against an injury depleted backline which we were able to take full advantage off.

They will miss Jordan Hugill, who was excellently marshalled by Adam Webster that day, but have much more quality in the midfield and this is where the game will be won.

Hopefully ITFC persist with the three at the back system which seems to suit the personnel in the squad until the end of the season, but I can’t see even that and the return of Joe Garner to a ground he enjoyed much success being enough tomorrow. Prediction Preston North End 2-0 Ipswich Town

Amy Downes

I remember being at Deepdale in August 2015, watching the clock count down on a 2-1 win that would see us go top of the league. How times have changed...

Preston are having a good season and this is the first time I’ve not looked forward to going to a game. Suspect the atmosphere will be flat among the travelling Blues and, though we badly need the players to fight back from the last two games, I can’t see tomorrow being the time for it. Hate to say it, 1-0 to Preston. Prediction: Preston North End 1-0 Ipswich Town

Benjamin Bloom

Looking ahead to a tough trip to Preston you can’t help feeling with Norwich now done and Ipswich 16 points off relegation and nine off the play offs with 13 games to go that the season is in danger of starting to wind down already.

Preston have surprised me this season, I expected a regression from last season when McGeady and Grayson left but they’re three points off the play offs and five places above Ipswich.

Mick always says a point away is good no matter the context and the fact Preston have had the most draws of any team in the league makes this more likely. Prediction: Preston North End 1-1 Ipswich Town