Ipswich Town F.C
Williams - 29, 44
Ipswich Town 0-2 Portsmouth: Same old story at Portman Road as Blues fall flat on fans return
- Credit: Steve waller
It was the same old story for Ipswich Town this afternoon as they again failed to beat a League One promotion contender at Portman Road.
On the day supporters finally returned to the home of the Blues after nine months away, Paul Lambert’s side were beaten by two Ryan Williams goals as Portsmouth took full control of this game before half-time.
From that point on there seemed little way back into this game for an Ipswich side who once again struggled to make chances and whose record against top 10 teams now reads one win and six losses so far this season. It’s an issue which troubled Ipswich last season, of course, as they recorded just two wins in 18 attempts against the 10 teams who finished above them.
There were some bright individual performances in what was a young Town side, dictated by a lengthy injury list, with Andre Dozzell and Armando Dobra the pick of the bunch without being able to drag their side back into the game.
Ultimately, though, Ipswich fell to another disappointing defeat and lacked goal threat throughout, on what had the potential to be a momentous day at Portman Road.
The loss sees Ipswich slip to sixth ahead of Tuesday’s visit of Burton Albion.
The return of 2,000 supporters to Portman Road for the first time since March saw the players clapped on and off during the warm-up, before those in attendance took to their feet when the two sides entered the pitch.
The Ipswich side did so with just one chance to the team which took on Plymouth last weekend, with Andre Dozzell coming in at the base of midfield in place of Brett McGavin.
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Both sides had spells on the ball inside the opening few minutes but it was David Cornell, making his first appearance in front of Ipswich supporters, who had the first save to make as he got down superbly to his left to push John Marquis’s shot wide, before catching a following corner expertly.
Town’s best spells came in midfield early on, without being able to link up with lone striker Kayden Jackson, before Ronan Curtis had Portsmouth’s next effort as he fired over the top after Mark McGuinness had missed an interception.
The first Ipswich effort came courtesy of Armando Dobra, who cut in from the right flank and picked up on a loose ball, before jinking into the area and forcing a good low save from visiting keeper Craig MacGillivray.
But just as the Blues were growing into this game, the visitors took the lead. A considerable number of the goals Ipswich have conceded of late have come down their left and the same was true again, with an excellent Pompey move saw them carve Ipswich up, with Marcus Harness’ low cross evading Luke Woolfenden for Marquis to tap back to Williams to finish excellently into the top corner.
The hosts slipped two behind before the break as Williams struck again, this time poking past Cornell after Town had lost a succession of 50/50s culminating in Luke Chambers being beaten to a header by Curtis to lay the ball on a plate for Williams.
A smattering of boos met Ipswich at the break and there was an edge at the start of the second period, as both sides traded passing moves.
Marquis rattled the Ipswich bar as the big striker beat Cornell to a flighted Curtis free-kick, before Dobra had a driven shot blocked by Raggett and Curtis rattled the Ipswich bar once again from range.
Cornell had to be alert again to save Sean Raggett’s downward header, keeping the score down on an afternoon where Town never really looked like finding the net themselves.
Ipswich Town: Cornell; Chambers, Woolfenden, McGuinness, Ward; Dozzell, Nolan (McGavin, 33), Dobra, Lankester (Hawkins, 70), Judge (Bennetts 62), Jackson (Drinan, 62)
Subs: Holy, Nsiala, Kenlock
Portsmouth: Macgillivray; Johnson, Whatmaugh, Raggett, Brown (Pring, 59), Williams, Naylor, Cannon, Curtis (Jacobs, 86), Marquis, Harness
Subs: Bass, Nicolaisen, Close, Hiwula, Harrison