Match preview: Bristol City v Ipswich Town – Blues out to extend good away run
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Being away from home could be a blessing in disguise for Ipswich Town today.
So says midfielder Cole Skuse ahead of this afternoon’s Championship clash at Bristol City.
The Blues have now failed to score in five successive games at Portman Road, with Tuesday night’s 3-0 defeat to Hull City played out amidst a toxic atmosphere as fans’ long-term frustrations came to the boil.
Mick McCarthy’s men are unbeaten in five on the road though, including recent wins at Sunderland, Preston and Sheffield Wednesday, with more than 1,000 Blues fans set to be at Ashton Gate.
“It’s nine games to go and the next one is away from home which might be a blessing, but on the flip side you might want another home game to try and put things right and put on a display for the fans,” said Skuse.
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“We’ve had some really good performances and results recently, which maybe made it even a little tougher to take on Tuesday because we didn’t go into the game on the back of five or six straight defeats.
“We beat Preston away, Sheffield Wednesday away and then drew with Sheffield United at home. We weren’t at our attacking best against them but we held a team who have been around the play-offs all season to a 0-0.
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“That wasn’t a disgraceful result which maybe made it a little tougher to take.
“Going away on Saturday we will be doing our best to win the game and whatever team the gaffer selects will be trying to do that, not just for ourselves but for everyone.”
Bristol City occupied a top-six spot for much of the season, but just two wins from their last 13 games has seen them slip to eighth.
“They’ve had a great season,” said Town boss Mick McCarthy. “They’ve been one of the better sides all season, just dropped out of that top six, which I think shows you how good that top six is when both Bristol City and Sheffield United are now outside of it. They’ve done well. They’ve invested in their team, they went out and spent a few quid on Famara Diedhiou (£5.3m) and they’ve got some good players.
“They managed to keep hold of Aden Flint which I think was a really big thing for them when there were lots of people trying to sign him. They’ve done well.”
Manager: Lee Johnson (Feb ‘16: P114 W46 D26 L42)
Last five finishes: 17th, 18th (Championship), 1st, 12th (League One), 24th (Championship)
Average league attendance: 20,724
Form: DLWLD DDLWL
Last game: D 0-0 Burton (a)
Most starts: Reid (41), Brownhill (40), Smith (39)
Most assists: Paterson (8), Reid/Brownhill (5)
Top-scorers: Reid (19), Diedhiou (11), Flint (8)
Margins of victory: 1 (x9), 2 (x7), 3+ (x4)
Margins of defeat: 1 (x9), 3 (x3)
Ipswich Town 1 Bristol City 3
Date: Saturday, September 30, 2017
Josh Brownhill scored a heavily-deflected opener (2), then Famara Diedhiou’s header doubling the lead (31). Martyn Waghorn fired in off the underside of the bar (41) to keep Town in it, but Bobby Reid wrapped up a deserved City win with another heavily-deflected finish (81).
Ipswich Town team news
• Joe Garner has been ruled out for the season after suffering a ‘minor skull fracture’ near his ear in last weekend’s 0-0 home draw with Sheffield United. He will now undergo surgery on long-standing shoulder and knee problems.
• Dominic Iorfa remains sidelined with the thigh strain he suffered last weekend.
• Mustapha Carayol is still out with the groin strain he suffered early in the 2-1 win at Sheffield Wednesday.
• Callum Connolly and Martyn Waghorn should return to the side after being rested for Tuesday night’s 3-0 home loss to Hull. Both were one booking away from a two-game ban but the slate has now been wiped clean.
• Emyr Huws, David McGoldrick, Tom Adeyemi, Teddy Bishop and Andre Dozzell all remain long-term absentees.
Bristol City team news
• Star centre-back Aden Flint remains suspended following his straight red card in the recent 2-1 defeat at Preston.
• Left-back Joe Bryan serves out his two-game suspension for picking up 10 bookings before the cut off point.
• Matty Taylor, Callum O’Dowda, Jens Hegeler and Gary O’Neil all remain sidelined through long-term injuries.
3 – Town have lost on their last 3 visits to Ashton Gate (2-0, 2-1, 2-1)
47 – League goals scored and conceded by Town
• Bristol City have slipped from second to eighth after claiming 11 points from their last 13 games
Opposition key man
Converting the livewire midfielder into a forward this season has proved a masterstroke by Lee Johnson. The 25-year-old tops the Championship scoring charts with 17 goals.
Bristol City 14/19
Ipswich Town 23/5
Darren England (Yorkshire)
Games: 31, Yellows: 120, Reds: 2