Lambert proud of his side after two ‘stonewall penalties’ not awarded in 1-0 win at Fleetwood
Ipswich Town manager Paul Lambert said he was proud of his side for securing a 1-0 win at Fleetwood Town this afternoon having had two ‘stonewall penalties’ not awarded.
After the two sides cancelled each other out in a first half that didn't contain a shot on target, the Blues stepped things up after the restart.
After James Norwood and Kayden Jackson spurned big opportunities, Jackson broke the deadlock with a rebound finish after keeper Alex Cairns had saved Luke Garbutt's low free-kick (58).
Jon Nolan (64) and Jackson (77) both then had huge shouts for penalties waved away, before referee Carl Boyeson finally pointed to the spot in the 88th minute after Jackson's heels were clipped.
Jackson subsequently rolled the spot-kick wide to set-up a nervy finish in which James Wilson was dismissed for a second yellow card, the 10th booking of a spiky affair.
"I thought we were excellent the whole game," said Lambert, whose side are now four points clear at the top of the League One table following an 11-game unbeaten start (W8 D3).
"We had some good moments in the fist half and second half I thought we were really, really good. It could have been three or four.
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"Apart from the penalty that was given I thought we had two more stonewallers that we never got. There were some strange decisions. The sending off I would need to see again, but there's no malice to James Wilson at all."
On the first penalty appeal, Nolan's legs swept out from under him, Lambert said: "Listen, if the ball is safe side then the defender can't go to ground in the penalty box. No chance. If you know anything about the game you know that. The lad was fortunate to get away with it.
"And Kayden's one was an absolute stick on. They were certainly fortunate to get away with that one.
"What he sees I don't know. From where I was standing they were two of the most blatant ones I've encountered. In big moments you've got to get big calls right. They were big calls and I don't think he got those right."
He added: "We should have put the game to bed. We should have been three or four up. The two penalties were bizarre. The drop ball here was incredible and then where did the six minutes (stoppage-time) come from at the end?!
"Jon (Nolan) was brilliant, absolute top drawer, but all the guys were. The defending was great. They never really had many chances.
"Fleetwood have been going well, but we have a different pressure to Fleetwood. You see the stadium today, everywhere we go it's like a cup game. But we're rising to it. We're meeting the challenge head on. I'm really, really proud of the team.
"The supporters travelled seven hours, or whatever it was, so I'm delighted for them. The start we've made has been absolutely phenomenal.
"It doesn't matter what anyone else does. We can only control what we can control. The way we are playing at this moment, for us to lose it's going to take us to have an off day and for someone to play really well."
Asked if he was surprised at just how well his team had started the season, Lambert said: "I really don't know. The big thing for me was getting the fans back and getting the team to bounce off them. You can see the togetherness at the end. It's a brilliant thing to see and something that's probably not been here for many years. The biggest achievement for me is reconnecting the football club.
"The club is in transition really. It's having to rebuild and reconnect with people. There's so much work to get done here it's incredible.
"It's not just what you see on the pitch, it's everywhere. But it's getting there. As I said before, once it does it will take off."