POST MATCH RAMBLE: Wednesday -v- Ipswich Town

POST MATCH RAMBLE: Wednesday -v- Ipswich Town

In hindsight putting myself on ramble duty for a game that I ended up being twenty minutes late for was probably not the best idea I’ve ever had…especially as the early exchanges of the Tuesday night contest at home to our visitors from Suffolk were far from uneventful under the S6 floodlights. Don’t worry though, I’ve caught up on the bits I missed.

Going into this midweek clash, there wasn’t the pessimism and negativity surrounding the side that would usually accompany back-to-back defeats, and with good reason as our performances both away at Manchester City and Cardiff City on the whole both merited a bit of praise for our display.

Yes, in the Etihad tie we shipped seven goals. However, holding the Champions and Capital One Cup holders to a 0-0 draw at half time was certainly no mean feat. In the end, City’s attacking prowess and sheer firepower ultimately made them the superior side on the night; a clear example that money does talk….that and the fact we were down to 10 men, turning a difficult proposition into an almost impossible one.

The fixture down on the Welsh south coast was a frustrating affair for the Owls as missed opportunities whilst on top in the game at the Cardiff City Stadium saw Wednesday ultimately pay the price, as Stuart Gray’s men succumbed to an unfortunate 2-1 defeat.

Mick McCarthy

Mad Mick’s back…

With Mick McCarthy’s Ipswich Town to contend with at Hillsborough on Tuesday night it would seem another tough test was on the cards, with the Tractor Boys previously beating Rotherham United at the weekend, seeing them move up to 5th in the table.

Kamil Zayatte’s return from suspension allowed Lewis Buxton to slot into his more natural right-back position, with Liam Palmer moving into midfield alongside Wednesday’s midfield stalwart Jose Semedo. Giles Coke made way onto the bench.

I saw Palmer play in a central position at Manchester City and to say he was opposed by the likes of Fernandinho, Frank Lampard and Yaya Toure he didn’t do too bad at all. It can only be used as a positive marker for the 23-year old to take into the prosperous future that lies ahead of him in the game.

Atdhe Nuhiu Shirt eating

Nuhiu strikes early

Gray had spoken in the aftermath of the Man City game about bouncing back from the League Cup drubbing and the Owls did just that with a perfect goal after just five minutes against Ipswich through Atdhe Nuhiu.

We haven’t looked overwhelmingly threatening from corner kicks this season thus far, mainly due to poor deliveries, which made it even better to see Jacques Maghoma whip in a perfect left-wing corner for the big Austrian, who was able to steer a near-post header past a helpless Dean Gerken and into the roof of the Town net.

It could’ve and, I personally felt, should’ve been two for the Owls from another corner. This time it was Joe Mattock’s header which was expertly saved by Gerken before Zayatte rose highest to head home into the back of the Leppings Lane net.

However, referee Darren Bond adjudged the Guinean defender to have pushed Christophe Berra in the back in an attempt to nod in his first goal of the season. A bewildering decision as far as I was concerned.

As the half wore on, the Suffolk outfit maintained a majority of possession, albeit to little avail as the hosts were content to allow their visitors to have the ball away from Wednesday territory.

McCarthy’s men did muster up a couple of opportunities before the break, with ex-loanee Darryl Murphy in particular having a decent chance to equalise, however, his header went just over Keiran Westwood’s crossbar.

Zayatte Injured

Another spell out injured

Zayatte’s game was cut short just a few minutes before the interval as he was an unfortunate victim of a hamstring pull in front of the Kop end as he went to clear an Ipswich long ball.

His replacement, Claude Dielna, slotted in at left centre-half and in fairness didn’t make the steadiest of starts to life in the Wednesday rearguard as he failed to win either of the first couple of balls that the Tractor Boys threw at him. Having said that, the Frenchman isn’t the tallest of players.

HALF TIME: Wednesday 1-0 Ipswich Town

In the second half, Wednesday again had a goal chalked off by the officials when another excellent Maghoma delivery was met by Nuhiu, who netted following an initial save by Gerken from his header, only to be disappointed when he turned round and saw the linesman’s flag raised.

I couldn’t help but feel that we would rue these refereeing decisions as Ipswich were always going to pose a significant threat as the match unfolded.

SG and Wednesdayites alike voice their disapproval on a regular basis about our forwards not taking their chances in the final third when they come our way, but on this occasion we’d hit the back of the net three times with only one of those making it on the scoreboard.

Whether they were chalked off legitimately or not, it was frustrating to say the least.

The inevitable suckerpunch came just past the hour mark, as substitute Johnny Williams marked his second debut for the club with a goal that was controversial to say the least.

The Owls failed to clear a Jonathan Parr right-wing cross before the ball fell to Williams, who appeared to control the ball with his arm before drilling the ball in low past Westwood and into the back of the net via the post. Mr Bond had provided the 18,000 Wednesdayites inside the ground with an even more bitter pill to swallow.

Chris Maguire new

Unlucky not to score

My man of the match, Chris Maguire, then went close as he struck a right-footed strike just wide of the Kop net thanks to a deflection off an Ipswich body that had Gerken well beaten.

Despite Gray throwing on numerous attacking options and trying desperately to get our noses in front again, we were unable to significantly assault the visitors’ goal with much purpose and had to settle with a scrappy, albeit hard-earned point.

FULL TIME: Wednesday 1-1 Ipswich Town

The draw was frustrating but nonetheless left us 9th in the table and 10 points better off than this time last season, which is again testament to Stuart Gray and the players; the guy really has done a terrific job!

Gray’s made it quite clear he is looking for further attacking options to bring in on loan, but at least Tuesday night proved we are capable of taking our opportunities, as long as we get the rub of the green in future with officials.

Going into our derby clash with Leeds on Sky at the weekend, I’m personally looking forward to see how we’ll fare against a side who have had an up-and-down start to the campaign.

A win at Elland Road at the weekend could do wonders for our confidence going into the international break, after which another challenging round of Championship fixtures await.

UTO!

OWLS ALIVE circliar yeller SPACE

Jonathan
Owls Alive
E-mail: admin@owlsalive.com

Twitter: @JonOwlzz and @OwlsAlive


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