Winners and losers: Magical Mac, flying Kyle, and 'you know what' is back!
- Credit: Steve Waller - www.stephenwaller
Ipswich Town drew at home to MK Dons on Saturday. MIKE BACON picks out his winners and losers from that game - and the weekend.
It takes some bottle to hit back in the way Macauley Bonne did for the Blues on Saturday.
I mean, it can't be nice when your name has been plastered about as a fun figure for missing a chance in a professional football match even most pub players will have told you, 'even I'd just have nodded that it'.
Replays of Macualey's Cheltenham miss all over social media, the great and good of the footballing world shaking their heads at such an opportunity spurned. You didn't have to tell Macauley Bonne it was a shocker. Everyone else did.
As a professional footballer that must have hurt.
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So, to step up four days later and net two super goals, the first an absolute belter, takes not just skill, but huge courage, class and as I said earlier, bottle.
Bonne is a credit to himself. You wouldn't have blamed him for taking easier options on Saturday when he got in goal-scoring positions, after Tuesday night's miss . Perhaps take an extra touch, just keep hold of the ball. Lay it back, pass it sideways.
But no. His first goal he just smashed home after a sublime touch. And what a strike. What confidence. What a player. His second, a classic centre-forward's poacher at the far post.
He's this weekend's biggest winner by some margin in the Ipswich Town camp, perhaps even in football's camp. He deserved to finish on the winning side on Saturday.
As for that Cheltenham miss. Let's forget it, hey? He's more than made up for that. As the French would say.... 'très bon... Bonne.'
FAST AND LOOSE
What a find Town have in winger Kyle Edwards.
And he's all ours. Not an on-loan man from another club. Not a player who we will hope to enjoy all season but know he is likely to be recalled. Not a player who we suspect we have no chance of ever signing on a full-time basis, like many we have fleetingly enjoyed over the years.
Kyle Edwards is ours.
And if Saturday's performance, where his silky skills lit up Portman Road at times, is anything to go by, then he is going to be an even bigger hit with the Blues faithful than he already is.
On more than one occasion he crossed dangerously into the box as Town looked for that killer second goal that would surely have seen them pick up their first win of the season, while his pace terrorised the MK Dons defence.
Town have a cracker in Edwards. Keep the fun coming, Kyle.
It must have been a surreal occasion for Liam Manning returning to Portman Road on Saturday.
The MK Dons and former Town academy coach found himself opposite Paul Cook in the visitors' dug-out, and he must have been hoping his team didn't let him down back at a club he graced for so many years. And they didn't.
Manning was able to enjoy the after-match press conference with the media, knowing his side didn't just acquit themselves well, but could have sneaked all three points. Early days for Liam in his managerial work here in England, after a good spell in Belgium.
But his future looks bright.
FREDDIE ON THE SPOT
Away from Portman Road and Colchester United picked up their first win of the season at Oldham on Saturday.
With a plethora of ex-Blues old boys in their starting line-up, there is a more than passing interest with Blues fans in how the Essex team perform this season in League Two.
And things are slowly improving, with former Blue Freddie Sears very much front and centre.
Sears grabbed a 95th-minute penalty equaliser at home for the U's against Mansfield on Tuesday night, before netting another penalty for them at Oldham on Saturday, as the U's went into a 2-0 early lead and held out to win 2-1.
THE BIG LOSERS
The Town captain won't need reminding about his mistake that likely cost Town victory on Saturday.
Caught in possession soon after Town had taken a 2-1 lead at Portman Road, Evans had the ball nicked off him 35 yards out, leaving Matt O'Riley to home in on the Town goal and slide the ball underneath Vaclav Hladky for the equaliser. It was a howler.
Evans cut a gutted figure. But all players make mistakes.
VAR IS BACK!
Oh, yes, two weeks in and VAR and those dreaded offside lines are back to haunt our TV screens.
The average fan, while sick to death of the scrutiny of whether someone's little toe is offside has got to the stage where they just sit back, shake their heads and put up with it.
VAR has some things going for it, but the micro-scrutiny of offside decisions continues to frustrate and annoy.
The benefit to the attacker has long gone and for now, little appears to have changed, meaning far too many Premier League games will have the VAR discussion as front and centre of the after-match analysis.