Town move up table with another good display
Ipswich Town 2 Bristol City 0
IPSWICH Town, who struck the bar three times, maintained their tremendous start to the season with a comprehensive victory over Bristol City in their npower Championship game at Portman Road on Saturday.
Tamas Priskin put the Blues ahead in the 58th minutes and Jason Scotland added a second 16 minutes later to make five wins and one draw since the season began.
The scorers gave evidence that they can form a successful partnership up front although City’s veteran keeper David James will not be happy with his contribution to either goal.
Three wins and one draw in the league has given Town a perfect platform to build a successful season.
Town made three changes from the side that beat Crewe Alexandra 1-0 after extra time in the Carling Cup at Gresty Road on Tuesday.
Fulop returned in goal in place of Murphy, who had an outstanding game in midweek while Peters came back in at right back at the expense of Brown. Scotland made his full Town debut and replaced O’Connor.
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O’Dea, who is on loan from Celtic until January, was making his home debut, while Stead and Pitman were playing their first games for the visitors having been signed during the week.
Stead was given a good reception by Ipswich fans having left Portman Road on Monday after serving the club well (67 appearances) and having starred in last weekend’s 2-1 league victory at Crystal Palace.
The two teams warmed up in bright sunshine with a two-week break following this game before the Blues visit Portsmouth in a fortnight’s time.
After 12 minutes of sparring, the game came to life when Scotland was adjudged to have been fouled as he tried to force his way beyond a bunch of defenders. The free-kick was played short to Leadbitter, who flicked the ball up and volleyed a 20 yard effort that beat James but came back off the bar.
It was mainly Town but the Robins were working hard and seeing plenty of the ball.
In the 20th minute, Leadbitter won a corner that Smith headed over, and a minute Scotland played Edwards into space down the right and when the cross came in the number 10 was on hand to miss the far post by a few inches with an instinctive low effort.
Adomah showed that City were not to be denied when he found space and shot low left-footed from 22 yards – with Fulop having to dive full length to his left to collect a shot bound for the far corner.
Priskin, who was floating between midfield and up front beside Scotland, then cleared the bar by half a foot with an angled strike as the match stepped up a gear. A minute later – in the 26th – Stead beat the offside trap and forced Fulop into a low save on his line.
Three minutes later, Stead shot low from 18 yards and Fulop saved on his line. The ball went straight back down the other end and Priskin got goal side of his marker as he chased the ball and thumped a six yard drive flush against the bar.
Despite City at times looking vulnerable at the back, Town were finding a home goal elusive to come by, but when Edwards sent over a cross in the 37th minute, Scotland managed to stretch to get in a glancing header that failed to trouble James.
The Blues struck the bar for a third time – this time in the 52nd minute. Priskin laid the ball back neatly, and an unmarked Scotland had time to side-foot against the top of the bar from 16 yards.
Priskin was now playing the more forward role with Scotland mixing in with the midfield men.
And in the 58th minutes the Hungarian international scored his first home goal for the Blues after James and Fontaine collided as they went to gather a back pass. Priskin rose to his feet first to slip the ball neatly into the unguarded net before Cisse could get back.
It was Priskin’s second goal of the season and led to ironic jeers by Town fans at the hapless James.
Town showed a few defensive nerves in the 64th minute when the ball found its way to Pitman at the far post. His shot was miscued and ran across goal to be cleared.
Ipswich looked to have won the game now, and they had the safety cushion of a second goal in the 74 minute through Scotland.
Priskin tried his luck from 25 yards and when James could only push aside the low effort, Scotland was on hand to tap the loose ball into the net at the far post.
The remainder of the game saw Town see out time without any alarms.
TOWN have received their eighth away cup draw on the bounce with a third round Carling Cup trip to Championship Millwall on September 21 or 22.
This follows an FA Cup trip under previous manager Jim Magilton to Chelsea and journeys to Shrewsbury, Peterborough, Exeter and Crewe in the Carling Cup under Roy Keane and Blackpool and Southampton in the FA Cup under the current manager.
Ipswich Town: Fulop; Peters, McAuley, Smith, O’Dea; Hyam (O’Connor 83); C Edwards, Leadbitter, Norris, Priskin; Scotland (Murray 90). Substitutes: Murphy, Brown, Healy, Eastman, Griffiths.
Bristol City: James; Hunt, Stewart, Fontaine, McAllister (T Willimas 73); Sproule, Elliott, Cisse, Adomah; Stead, Pitman. Substitutes: Gerken, Carey, Johnson, Clarkson, Campbell-Ryce, J Edwards.
Referee: Mr MP Russell (Hertfordshire)