No change to a winning team
THE same victorious Ipswich Town side which captured their first league win of the season will do battle against Wimbledon tomorrow.Blues boss Joe Royle has no intention of tinkering with the starting XI as they look to capitalise on their home win over struggling Walsall on Tuesday.
THE same victorious Ipswich Town side which captured their first league win of the season will do battle against Wimbledon tomorrow.
Blues boss Joe Royle has no intention of tinkering with the starting XI as they look to capitalise on their home win over struggling Walsall on Tuesday.
“The team did well enough, not just the win but the performance was good so there won't be any changes.
“It is good to have a settled side because that usually means you are winning. But equally that doesn't mean to say things are going to fly off from here because we won one game. We have to work on it and take it on from there.”
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After defeats to Wigan, West Ham and West Bromwich Albion, all in the top four, the Blues now face Watford, Wimbledon and Rotherham, who occupy the bottom three places, so are ideally placed to take nine points and surge up the table. In between is also a visit to the Stadium of Light to face Sunderland, who have hit a hot streak of form.
Town traditionally falter against so-called weaker sides but after getting thumped 5-1 by the Dons at Portman Road last season, will be looking to wreak revenge.
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Royle got his first league win under his belt last year with a 2-0 victory at Watford, so a repeat of that could see another winning run. And he will be looking for a better result against Rotherham after the catastrophic defeat at Millmoor last season, which effectively ended Town's play-off hopes.
While the prospect of playing Wimbledon at home right now, with them rock bottom and apparently struggling, may look appealing, Royle was cautious.
He warned: “Wimbledon have made a career of not being ideal opponents. Never underestimate Stuart Murdoch and his boys. I do feel for Stuart because everything that has happened to Ipswich has happened to Wimbledon and worse. They love bucking the trend and have done that for a long time. It is hard game, believe me.”
Royle picked out Patrick Agyemang and Joel McAnuff as the Dons' key players.
He said: “Agyemang is very quick up front and I know he has attracted the interest of a lot of scouts but they are keen to keep him. McAnuff is a dangerous player. They have a lot of quick players but it is down to us. At our best, we are a match for anyone in this division.
“It might not have been noticed but our last three defeats were against teams that are among the top four so they may not have been as bad as people said they were. Even at West Brom we were in with a chance and the 4-1 scoreline was hard on us.
“All we have to do is tighten up at the back, keep on passing the ball and keep on going forward as we are.”
Alun Armstrong missed yesterday's training but is expected to join in today.
Martijn Reuser visits a specialist in Bradford today to determine the exact problem of a niggling groin injury.
A scan on Tommy Miller's knee injury showed a tendon problem and he will be out for another three or four weeks. Chris Makin has a tear in a thigh muscle but is hoping to be back in time for Town's visit to his old club Sunderland on September 30.
And John McGreal has been given a special programme to strengthen his back, after related problems caused him to have a hamstring worry.