Saturday, 31 July 2010

Better display today - more positives than negatives

Ipswich Town 0 West Ham United 1, Pre Season friendly, 31st July 2010

A better display today by the blues, with young Hyam showing why Garvan will not be missed. Also a great turnout bu the West Ham fans, must have wanted a day out in Suffolk?

Oh and from an earlier post, there now is a sign by the Sir Bobby Robson Bridge - picture will follow eventually.

Thursday, 29 July 2010

The Youth of today v Dissent United

Ipswich Town Academy Under 18's 1 Colchester United Youths 3 - Youth Pre season friendly, Playford Road - ITFC Training Ground - 29 July 2010

I have always enjoyed watching the Academy, to be honest over the last few years I have seen more quality football at the training ground in Playford Road than I have at Portman Road.

I have seen the likes of Darren Bent start their playing days here and the last game I saw him play was for England in Austria.

The training ground is a fantastic facility, with pitches that look like bowling greens. Such an improvement from when the club first moved there and just had the old Crane's pavilion. Though at times there does seem to be a less friendly attitude from some at the club to those who watch the young blues.

Such a change from when I used to watch the Ipswich Youth team in the 60's. my first football fix, when I used to watch Laurie Sivell, Trevor Whymark and others play on the muddy practice pitch at Portman Road, though it did have it's advantages. As a young lad you could escape from your dad and sneak into the west Stand (Pioneer, Brittania) and pretend you were in a large crowd watching the first team.

Oh back to the game today, some good football but was not happy with the attitude of Colchester United or as they should be known Dissent United!

A win, more rain and a large crowd

Bury Town 0 Ipswich Town XI 1, Pre Season friendly - July 28th 2010

For many the cathedral at Bury St Edmunds is the most famous sight but for football fans it is Ram Meadow and the Sugar Beet Silos - when you see these you know it is not far to Ipswich, and home!

24 Hours after a match at Leiston in the rain, I now find myself at Ram Meadow, home of Bury Town - in the rain again. Ipswich fielded what was probably 80% of what will be the starting line up when the Championship season starts. A good passing display but again we seemed unable to score. A good crowd of over 1,000 at a club who are on the up. The ground may still need some work on it but it can easily cater for 1,000 plus though more seats may be needed. Boxing Day will be the a big game for the club when they take on fellow Suffolk side Lowestoft Town to see who really is Suffolk's second club!

Jimmy the Rattle stand - best named stand in football?

Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Rain, and a Brazilian trialist

Leiston Town 0 Ipswich Town XI 2 - Victory Road, Pre Season friendly, 27th July 2010

My first trip to see a game at Leiston, but for once I did not do a tour of the ground - heavy rain put a stop to that and by the time the rain had stopped the game had started. A tough game against a non league side that did not seem overawed.
Bad first five minutes for Roy Keane as both Quinn and Civelli picked up injuries and had to be substituted.

Before the rain

Civelli before the injury

Not much to write home about, till the 62 minute when we saw a Brazilian trialist arrive on the pitch - Marcus Picciarelli. The 20-year-old striker is currently with Rio de Janeiro side MacaƩ and started a trial earlier in the week. wonder what he thought of a wet Lesiton?

Saturday, 24 July 2010

Maybe not top class cricket but good fun for a good cause

Ipswich and East Suffolk CC v Ipswich Town FC - Charity 20/20 Cricket match - Chantry Park, 23 July 2010

Maybe not the best cricket, but fun, for a good cause (Suffolk Cancer Charity) and at least they made it competitive. Tommy Smith was man of the match for Ipswich, so his last competitive sports match was in the World Cup in South Africa in front of a 5 figure crowd and then his next game is a cricket match on a public park in front of hundreds- but he seemed as keen to win this one as he did in the World Cup.
Well done both teams for an entertaining evening.

Monday, 19 July 2010

A Dutch tribute to Sir Bobby

Saturday 17th July 2010 - PSV Eindhoven 1 v Ipswich 0 Pre Season friendly

A weekend in Holland was an opportunity not to be missed, so my wife and I booked a weekend, which would see us take the short trip to Eindhoven on the Saturday. the game was yet another tribute to Bobby Robson, when two of his former teams would meet in a pre season friendly. It all looked so easy!

First error- like England, weekends are when work on the railways takes place so our journey time to the home of Philips was doubled, we even thought we would not get back to Amsterdam after the game, but a helpful Dutch Railway guard pointed us to the Rotterdam train and one change later we were back in Amsterdam.

The game? As expected we were outclassed but a fine goalkeeping display and a more determined second half performance meant we only lost one nil.
Strangest part of the day? A second half substitution, Timmy Simons was playing his last game for the Dutch giants and he was taken off to a standing ovation. nothing strange there but unlike in the UK, he was carried off on the shoulders off fellow players and then on the pitch was presented with a picture, then he made a speech - and the ref still only added one minute on!

Timmy after his speech!

The stadium was impressive, even with only 13,000 in the ground, plenty of beer outside and both Set's of fans mixing then it became a flashback to the anti football Thatcher years. The Town fans were put in the highest corner of the ground, searched and innocent everyday objecys removed from supporters and hen we were surrounded by a large glass wall. Very strange and so out of place in this fixture.

My pet subject of statues at football grounds was well catered for, two at one end of the ground, both of former players but at the other end almost hidden away was a white stone statue, no inscription but I believe it may have had more to do with one of the founders of the Philips Company than the football team - anyone help?

Oh and programmes were hidden from Town fans, now the hundreds who went have to search the Internet to get a souvenir of the match.