RAMBLE | Wednesday 2 – 1 Ipswich

RAMBLE | Wednesday 2 – 1 Ipswich

There is a lot to be said for a healthy dose of cynicism. It stops you from feeling too disappointed. I think it is wise to not rely on football too much, like we’re all sometimes guilty of doing. After a summer of falling back in love with the English national side for the first time in what felt like forever, we ultimately were left heartbroken. At the time I wasn’t in the best place mentally so it hurt more than it probably should have and I tried to convince myself I wouldn’t go through it all again with Wednesday. Yet he we are, five games into the season and I am falling into the same old habits. I guess I really am a glutton for punishment…

Onto a more positive note, a relatively attractive win against Millwall had managed to lift the mood around Hillsborough, meaning we were going into this game with at least a little bit more hope. Despite the transfer embargo being lifted, there is still a sense of somewhat doom with a sprinkling of gloom around S6 at the minute. The uncertainty of where we will end up after this season being the main culprit as to why. Which realistically means we can only take everything as it comes right now.

I woke up on Saturday morning feeling very, very rough. The night before me and my flatmate Callum, along with his lass Sarah, had gone out and ended up in Rawsons Springs. Those little raspberry flavoured Sambuccas came out to play, you know, the ones that are apparently meant to taste like raspberry but still just taste like burning. Coupled with several pints (including the cider version of almost pure alcohol that is Old Rosie) I don’t think you need much more information as to why I felt rough. In those moments, you have two choices, wallow in it or hair of the dog. I chose the latter and went to the pub with my friend Tward. We call him Tward because his name is Tom Ward. I know, I know, such genuis is rare to come across these days…

We chose the New Barrack Tavern because, well, it’s just a great pub, and as we walked out into the beer garden we saw fellow Owls Aliver Japes (Jon Gill to anyone new) and a certain James Marriott of The Wednesday Week. They confirmed that they were both hungover as well, which I would like to say made me feel slightly better but it didn’t. I know it is a cliche but the further you progress into your twenties, the harder it is to shake off a hangover. Plus they’re usually meaner. Like a schoolyard bully who was bad enough to start with but has now been given a BB gun. They’re just evil.

After a couple of pints we realised that hair of the dog wasn’t having the desired effect so we turned to other methods, mainly trying to distract ourselves from the hangover. Thankfully the team news coming out helped. It was a similar side apart from up front we saw Nuhiu and Joao partner each other. Forestieri was on the bench again which, I have to say, does make me think there could be something going on behind the scenes there. Still, the team I believed was good enough to beat Ipswich Town. An Ipswich Town that was also no longer managed by mad Mick McCarthy who seems to always get one over on us.

We briefly headed up to the Garrison Hotel to meet my mum & dad and Aylesbury (Peter Coussens again to newcomers). I sat down and saw that my mum had brought me a sandwich which made me happier than a sandwich probably should. Desperate hangovers called for desperate sandwiches though. Or something like that…

After a sandwich and a coke (yes, the alcohol beat me) we set off to Hillsborough for what would be a… Well, an afternoon out…

First Half

I want to say I enjoyed the first half, or that I can remember it vividly, however I can’t. It was a poor half, sadly. Both teams looked like they were nervous and a bit lethargic. However, one thing I will say about Ipswich Town is that they had a better game plan than Millwall. They gave us a lot less time on the ball and they, again like Millwall, were another big, physical side who were happy trying to turn the game into a physical battle and feed off of scraps.

That being said, they also looked a little dodgy at the back. So they were in good company. Thankfully, we realised this and it was us who struck first. A decent corner into their box seemed to miss every Ipswich defender and fall to Lucas Joao, completely unmarked, at the back post, and he gratefully nodded home. It was a massive gift but you still have to capitalise on situations like those.

Free header, 1-0

Not long after, Jordan Thorniley (more on him later) was agonisingly close to increasing the lead. His header however was smashed wide. You could see that balls into the box was a massive weakness for them. Something we could definitely capitalise on with players like Barry Bannan and Adam Reach.

I couldn’t help but think we needed a second because, with our mistakes at the back, we were struggling massively to keep a clean sheet. Sadly I was right.

We were caught ball watching at the back as a ball was launched into our area and a scruffy goal was converted. There was a suggestion that it was offside but the referee and linesman were unmoved. A sloppy goal to concede towards the end of a mediocre half, and if it wasn’t for a decent save from Dawson not long after their goal, it could have been 2-1.

Half Time- Wednesday 1-1 Ipswich

The general feeling was that it had been a poor game thus far. Neither side had really said “this is our game to win now”. As the old cliche goes, the next goal was crucial. We bumped into Tommo and his youngsters Louis and Jamie who, in all honesty, looked like they were bored to death. Tommo had a few harsh words about Cameron Dawson, who he was thoroughly unconvinced by. In some ways I agreed with him, however Dawson is still incredibly young, particularly for a keeper. There is still a lot he can learn and he can become a more adept keeper with time. We went back up to our seats in the hope that Jos would have got the players all fired up for a better second half.

Second Half

This was now anyone’s game. Both sides knew that and both were hesitant to truly sink their teeth into it. On the whole, I think we were marginally the better side, however a draw would have probably been a fair result. I wouldn’t have complained if Ipswich Town had nicked it either.

We did however have the better chances. Matt Penney again showed that the LB spot is his to lose with a positive surge forward leading to a cutback into the box. Bannan’s shot was blocked and the follow up from Joey Pelupessy went sailing over the top post.

To be honest, it felt like a game that needed a catalyst. Something big to happen to change the game. Well, it did.

Shortly after coming on for Marco Matias, Fernando Forestieri was involved in a controversial moment. Aristote Nsiala, The Ipswich Town defender, was sent off for what was deemed a reckless challenge. I have seen a fair bit of debate on Twitter about it as Nsiala does seem to win the ball. However, when you watch it again, it is definitely a reckless challenge. Still, judging by the comments from Paul Hurst they’re going to appeal it.

Now up against 10 men we had the numerical advantage. Anyone who has watched football week in week out though will know that it doesn’t always mean you now have an advantage. We needed to score whilst we were on top, otherwise Ipswich Town would have probably put 10 men behind the ball to frustrate us and to hold onto the point.

Thankfully, Joao popped up again to grab his brace after a mad scramble following a corner.

Joao celebrates his second

The rest of the game followed the pattern everyone properly predicted. Ipswich tried their best to get back into it but being a man light they struggled to pose any real threat. We nearly gifted them a goal though after a long ball forward somehow managed to make its way into the box unopposed. Thankfully Penney got back to clear it behind for a corner.

They were also up against a defender in the form of his life in Thorniley who, like Penney, has done more than enough to ensure a place in the starting XI. He was an absolute rock, got stuck into everything and I am pretty sure if someone had chucked a brick at him he’d have headed it back with ease.

The full time whistle went and we all heaved a mighty sigh of relief. It wasn’t pretty but we had got there in the end.

Full Time- Wednesday 2-1 Ipswich

To be honest, I think most people in the ground were glad that it was over and we had come away with three points. It definitely wasn’t a game for the neutrals, or for 26 year olds with hangovers. It was however two wins in two. As I mentioned at the start of the ramble, the future is uncertain right now at the club so we can only take everything game by game. There will be better performances than this where we lose and there will probably be worse perfoemances where we win. To save ourselves from a potential spanking we do need to find a healthy middle ground between grinding out results yet not letting performances slip.

Still, with such uncertainty still looming over our club, let’s just enjoy the ride and hope that it is  super fun, epic rollercoaster rather than scary, house horrors ghost train.


Owls Alive

Email: owlsalive@gmail.com

Twitter: @OwlsAlive and @BillyFensterFen

Images: swfc.co.uk unless stated otherwise

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