Justice done, says Joe

JOE Royle enjoyed the irony of his Ipswich Town side salvaging a point against stubborn Burnley. Matt Richards' equaliser broke the back of a Burnley side that almost ended Ipswich's unbeaten home record.

JOE Royle enjoyed the irony of his Ipswich Town side salvaging a point against stubborn Burnley.

Matt Richards' equaliser broke the back of a Burnley side that almost ended Ipswich's unbeaten home record.

The Blues had not failed to score at Portman Road since Norwich kept them out last December and it was looking as if the Championship's top scorers were going to be denied.

That was until Shefki Kuqi ignored defender Mo Camara prone in the area to run onto a Kevin Horlock pass and send in a deep cross for defender Richards to hit back across goal to crash in off a post.

That wiped out Robbie Blake's 19th minute opener which came courtesy of a mistake by Richard Naylor.

Royle said: “It was quite fitting that we scored while one of their players was feigning injury. Sometimes there is justice.”

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The Blues boss was less than happy with the Portman Road crowd's input, which he felt did not encourage his players.

Royle said: “It was very quiet out there. Sometimes they can lift us, sometimes we can lift them. At half-time it was like a practice match and that was transmitted to the players. Perhaps some fans thought we were going to stroll it, but that was never going to be the case because we know they can defend.”

Royle was not bothered that Burnley played with 10 men behind the ball and warned there would be more of that to come.

He said: “I don't care how they play, they can play 4-5-1, 4-6-0 or 0-12, it's not my business. The referee then has to take a hand and I thought there were about eight minutes wasted never mind five. We kept trying to play. They came here not to lose and nearly won it. Sometimes if it is not quite your day you accept a point.

“We have had a go and I'm pleased with the effort. We have played better and with more guile. But here is a little warning - we are going to see a lot more of those games here this year. Coventry played with five in midfield at home and more teams will look to try and stop us.

“We certainly deserved to get at least a point because we kept trying to win the game. We hit the woodwork four or five times and should have had a blatant penalty.”

The shout for a spot kick came in the first half when an Ian Westlake attempted cross struck Frank Sinclair on an arm. Royle said: “Perhaps the referee was too close.”

But he paid tribute to goal hero Richards and said: “It was a great strike for the goal. It was his best pass of the day. He had one of those days passing but it was a great strike.”

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