Skipper's warning

BLUES skipper Jason De Vos has warned that Ipswich need to be more clinical in front of goal if they are to stand any chance of challenging for the play-off places.

By Derek Davis

BLUES skipper Jason De Vos has warned that Ipswich need to be more clinical in front of goal if they are to stand any chance of challenging for the play-off places.

And De Vos has told his team-mates that they need to be a lot better at home too.

Ipswich Town go to Coventry City today 11 points off sixth place with more than half the season gone and got off to a terrible start to the vital festive period by losing on Saturday.

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With West Brom away and league leaders Birmingham also to come over the next week, winning at the Ricoh Stadium represents Town best chances of bagging points.

De Vos said: “We have to show promotion form over the second half of the season.

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“We need at least an average of two points a game. 70 points should get you in the play-offs and we know we have to go on a run and soon to get those 44 points or more.

“It is achievable. Crystal Palace had less points than us a couple of years ago but went on a run and got into the play offs.

“To do that we are going to have to be better at home. The Stoke game was another example of how frustrating our season has been. We also need to be more clinical in the final third.”

After the demoralising loss at home to Stoke, Town have little time to ponder defeat and will look to put things right today.

De Vos said: “We have to bounce back. We can't dwell over results and have to move on.

“We take stock of why we didn't score despite dominating for long periods. We didn't create enough gilt-edged chances and the longer the game went on the more likely it was they would nick one against the run of play, which is what happened.”

But the skipper accepts Town need to be more deadly in front of goal.

He said: “It is not a criticism of the front players, it is a team game. We need to attack as a team and we need to defend as a team.

“We didn't create enough chances against Stoke and our set plays weren't good enough. We have been working on scoring more from set pieces because that takes the pressure off.

“Our overall passing play was good and we need to keep doing that at Coventry.”

The Sky Blues are also in something of a slump and went down 3-1 to Luton on Saturday but De Vos has warned against over-optimism.

He said: “The funny thing about this league is that everyone can beat everyone.

“That is why you have to give every team the same amount of respect.

“That is why we will be going to Coventry knowing they will be tough to beat but we know we have to be on our game.”

De Vos accepts that the team needs freshening up and is sure manager Jim Magilton will make changes in January.

He said: “I'm sure when the transfer window open in January the manager will be looking to bring players in, as will every manager in the country.

“At the minute we are not where we want to be in the league. We want to be higher, challenging for the play-off places but at the moment we are not.”

Manager Jim Magilton once more has a fully fit squad to choose from but has hinted he may drop Alan Lee today.

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