Ipswich Town fan Zach Ward says: Another straw gone from the pile to clutch at...
Well, that’s another straw gone from the pile to clutch at.
For some, Saturday’s defeat at home to Huddersfield was the straw that broke the camel’s back. The post-game reaction from the Sir Bobby Robson Stand was proof of this — it was the first time really they have made their feelings known so vocally and in such numbers.
While I always believe results should take precedent over performances, someone rightfully pointed out to me you can have both. And, certainly for much of this season, we have had neither
From an outsider looking in, some would say a narrow defeat to the league leaders was, on the face of it, not terrible.
But for those of us at Portman Road and spectators at recent fixtures, unfortunately Saturday continued a worrying pattern of a toothless-looking Town, who look painfully short of goals.
There is one thing not scoring — but not even creating half decent half chances in our recent games causes great concern.
The statistics for Ipswich this season do not make pleasant reading.
On Saturday, we had one shot on target. At home to Brighton last Tuesday night we had two. Away at Leeds, we had one solitary effort on the opposition goal. And at home to Villa before that, we had four, although, despite an expensively-assembled squad, they are hardly pulling up any trees in the league — they sit 19th and today got rid of their manager.
We have scored only eight goals in the league. Four of those came on the first day against Barnsley.
And while it is true that, if you can reduce teams to few opportunities, you give yourself a chance of winning any game, not being able to carve out decent chances means you will win very few, if any.
Where is it going wrong?
At home, I fear we are a bit too negative in the way we set up.
I would have Teddy Bishop alongside Cole Skuse in the middle. I’d also play Freddie Sears up top, alongside Leon Best, who has looked an isolated figure since his Town career began.
Daryl Murphy, too, was also such a pivotal figure in the way that we play. He hasn’t been replaced, on current evidence.
I felt, with the signings of Grant Ward, Conor Grant, Tom Lawrence and Adam Webster, we would see a shift in style. But this has yet to really materialise.
And now for many, a change of manager is needed to turn our fortunes around.
It is always a shame when the relationship between manager and fans turns sour.
The job Mick McCarthy and Terry Connor did when they first came in, to turn us from relegation fodder to play-off contenders and qualifiers, was nothing short of brilliant. But it’s not always right to dwell on the past.
While I always believe results should take precedent over performances, someone rightfully pointed out to me you can have both. And, certainly for much of this season, we have had neither. Dwindling attendances suggest this too.
I remain pro Mick — many have questioned my sanity — and reaction on social media suggests I’m in the minority. I believe he has earned the right to get us out of this sticky patch. How much credit remains in the bank on that front remains to be seen. I certainly need to see some improvement to remain in the ‘in’ camp.
The international break has, I feel, come at a good time.
We return with an away fixture at Blackburn Rovers, before hosting Burton Albion. These are two games that we ought to win — perhaps have to win — to turn the tide.
If things don’t visibly improve in those clashes I don’t know where we go from there.
Apart from an incredibly daunting trip to Newcastle United on October 22 as things stand...