Unsworth pleased to help

IT may have been a novel experience playing outside the Premiership but David Unsworth revelled in a goal-scoring debut - for the third time in his career.

By Derek Davis

IT may have been a novel experience playing outside the Premiership but David Unsworth revelled in a goal-scoring debut - for the third time in his career.

The loan signing from Portsmouth had never played against Sheffield United before in his 13-year career but started his Championship campaign successfully.

Unsworth said: “It's a clean sheet, three points and all the other teams around us have fallen - and a goal as well.

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“I got one on my Pompey debut, and for Everton, but more importantly we took full advantage of the other top teams failing to win.”

The converted left-back who has also played for West Ham, with a brief non-playing stint at Aston Villa, was not concerned that his latest team did not show their full potential.

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He said: “ People are saying we didn't play that well but if you win when you're not playing that well, that's a good sign. We've got two very good centre-halves who can head the ball away when you come up against a team who play a lot of high balls into the box.”

Even though his Pompey future looks uncertain and he is settling in well at Portman Road, Unsworth insisted he was not looking far ahead.

He said: “I'm going back at the end of the season and we'll assess it then. I'm not looking any farther than the next game. But it's been a great week, getting back to working with Joe Royle and Willie Donachie, and they are a good set of lads here at Ipswich. I'm not just saying that, there really is a good spirit. If I can play my small part in helping Ipswich win promotion, that'd be great.”

Unsworth also revealed how light-hearted comments he made in the EADT had resulted in a phone call from his new boss.

He said: “I said the other day that the only difference between Joe now from when I was with him at Everton is that his jokes have got worse. He rang me the next day and ticked me off so I have to say his jokes have got better.”

Royle was delighted with the player he had at Everton and who was part of his FA Cup winning side of 1995, although admits he wasn't sure what the defender was up to just before he scored the opener.

Royle said: “David did exceptionally well.

“For the goal I kept thinking 'square it, square it' so when he hit it I was as surprised as anyone. But hit it he did, and what a finish, what a debut for us.”

The Blues boss also praised his whole back line, and keeper Kelvin Davis, for securing the victory.

He said: “We had to defend at times and defend we did. We don't usually do clean sheets but the back four and keeper were magnificent.

“It is the best we have ever dealt with an aerial barrage because we have had frailties in that area in the past.

“But it is good to be talking about the defence for a change instead of how well we pass the ball.

“It is a long season and we are going to have to do that.”

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