Joe takes pop at critics

BLUES boss Joe Royle celebrated the win over Crewe by having a pop at the detractor boys who have been critical of recent results and his style of play, writes Derek Davis.

BLUES boss Joe Royle celebrated the win over Crewe by having a pop at the detractor boys who have been critical of recent results and his style of play, writes Derek Davis.

Royle is unhappy with the supporters writing letters to newspapers and callers to radio phone-ins expressing their opinions and hopes the minority will be silenced.

He said: "We passed the ball and think we play the right way.

"There are 17,000 season ticket-holders who seem to agree with me.


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"Only Luton have lost fewer games and only they have scored more goals than us, so we must be doing something right."

Town's flowing football crushed Crewe and once they were two-up there was no hope for Alex. Royle said: "For the first 20 minutes we were outstanding and we won the game in that period. It was hard for Crewe to come back from that and we were always comfortable.

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"Being a gripey old manager I was unhappy when they scored late on, but it wouldn't be Ipswich otherwise – we don't do clean sheets."

Although his side go to lowly Brighton and Wigan entertain play-off chasing Reading, Royle is not overly-optimistic.

He said: "I make Wigan a shade odds-on for the second automatic promotion place because they have a home match and I have great respect for their manager Paul Jewell.

"It has been looking for a long time as though the promotion issue would be a last-day event.

"I expect a hard game at Brighton because they need a result to stay up and we have not always been fluent in recent away games."

Royle heaped praise on two-goal Tommy Miller and his forwards.

He said: "That was his most complete game for us. He has matured as an all-round player and was brilliant, just ahead of Jim (Magilton).

"We played off the front men so that the Crewe central defenders must have needed oxygen.

"Then to see two fresh front men like Pablo (Counago) and James (Scowcroft) going on they must have needed paramedics."

Royle is no fan of the play-offs but will accept promotion via the system if they must. He said: "I have been successful in play-offs at Wembley and penalties. If we have to deal with it then deal with we shall.

"No one will be more positive than me and if we have to use, or even abuse, the play-off system then we will do it. We just have to get up.

"We will want to win at Brighton and hope Reading do us a favour against Wigan. I will be on the phone to (Reading boss) Steve Coppell again this week."

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