Sunday, 31 July 2011

Almost there!

Saturday 30 July 2011, Ipswich Town 1 Wolverhampton Wanderers 2, Pre season friendly - Portman Road

Under a week to go now till the real competitive football starts, a not too impressive pre season finished with a game against Premier team Wolves at home.

Only just over 5,000 turned up to see the best Town game so far, the last two signings of Emmanuel-Thomas and Stockdale look like they will add plenty to the team and it was also good too see Ingimarsson playing. Battling midfield of Leadbitter and Bowyer (with Hyam in reserve) and Chopra up front with a rejuvenated Lee Martin were all pluses, but still in desperate need of an extra centre back plus a right back - but all looking much better than last week.

Flash back to 70's football games - 'Jesus saves, Mariner nets rebound!'

Saturday, 23 July 2011

Old style ground, old style bad habits.

Friday 22nd July 2011, Southend United 1 Ipswich Town 1, Pre season friendly - Roots Hall

A short drive to the Essex coast for a visit to Roots hall as Southend took on Ipswich Town.

A drive along the seafront showed that some money had been spent on how the resort looked, but it was quiet obvious that nothing had been spent on the ground, or the area around Roots Hall. Even the pubs looked run down and would probably felt more at home in some East London backstreet.

The game, started well, a great goal from Lee Martin, but then Chopra went off injured, Martin went back to spending most of his time hiding from the ball and then the defence showed that they could be done under the trade descriptions act! Please tell me how Tommy Smith found himself playing in the World Cup Finals in 2010?

The Southend 'Shed'/Tardis

Best bit of the day? The un-friendly nature of some of the midfield tussles and the Southend Groundsman's 'Shed', counting the amount of the people who entered the 'shed' it may have been a tardis!!

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Summer is over, football starts

Tuesday 19th July 2011, Cambridge United 2 Ipswich Town 2 - Pre season friendly.

What a start, two down in 4 minutes!! Still need a centre back, right back, midfielder, left back --- but at least we have a goalscorer - Michael Chopra!

It was funny to be back at the Abbey Stadium (or as it is known now - the R Costings Abbey Stadium), my last visit was also for a pre season game in 1980, 31 years ago! We then stood in an open end but today behind the same goal we sat in a very smart stand, but the rest of the ground has not changed much. On my last visit in 1980, we were just starting a season that would see us play our greatest football ever, since then both clubs have had their ups and downs. United may have suffered more as they are now back playing non league football.

Other changes? we probably had more fans at the game this week than we did in 1980, and no hooligans!

Still a very quaint ground to visit and as it is Cambridge, plenty of bike racks - and all being used!