Saturday, 27 August 2011

We love your curly hair

Saturday 27th August 2011 - Ipswich Town 2 Leeds United 1, Championship - Portman Road

Jimmy Bullard- we love your curly hair! Mr Sonko, you not bad either.

Saturday, 20 August 2011

Time to go?

Saturday 20th August 2011 - Peterborough United 7 Ipswich Town 1, Championship, London Road

I have calmed down- like many who went to the game, I felt like singing 'your not fit to wear the shirt' but I never. Not to say I was happy with the players but Evans, Clegg and Jewell should take a long hard look at themselves. They may stay, they might go but one thing is certain - I and many Town fans will still be here long after you three have left- don't kill our club!

Friday, 19 August 2011

Summer sport?

Thursday 18th August 2011, Essex v Gloucestershire, Day 2 of 4 County Championship Division Two, Castle Park - Colchester

Summer sport? Bloody cold, dark, and in the end we got the predicted rain! But at least we got over 4 hours of play so the short trip to Colchester was worth it.

Festival cricket is a fantastic event, and one I hope and expect County cricket to continue with. It has been reduced, Essex used to play at a number of grounds away from their main home at Chelmsford. Festivals were held at Southend, Colchester, Ilford and other grounds like Harlow also witnessed Essex matches but now it is just Colchester and Southend that see the Essex team on the road.

The festival games often see bigger crowds than you will find at the normal county homes, and a great opportunity for sponsorship and corporate hospitality. But with Chelmsford witnessing very few County games and in 2012 there will be a reduction in T20 games held. T20 crowds have been high at Chelmsford and you would expect a call by some committee members at Chelmsford to see one of the festival games scrapped so more cricket is played at the County home.

It is not just Essex who play at a 'home away from home' this week we see Lancashire at Blackpool and Yorkshire at Scarborough. Of course ground which host test cricket do not need so much County cricket at home and the other problem at Festival games can be the quality of the pitch, covers and spectator facilities. the record one day score at Horsham by Sussex last week would not make that a ground that many bowlers would want to play at.

But saying all that, festival cricket will continue, just need summer weather to go with it!

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Saints came marching in, and left with three points!

Tuesday 16th August 2011 Ipswich Town 2 Southampton 5, Championship - Portman Road

Tonight I will be mostly crying!

Saturday, 13 August 2011

Good start did not last long

Saturday 13th August 2011, Ipswich Town 0 Hull City 1, Championship - Portman Road

Good start did not last long, and Roy Keane was right! Lee Martin is not good enough for Ipswich or the Championship.

Friday, 12 August 2011

Top of the league (but out of the cup)

Tuesday 9th August 2011, Ipswich Town 1 Northampton Town 2, League Cup Round 1, Portman Road

If we are not going to field a side that can win, why bother entering? Poor display!

Monday, 8 August 2011

The Eagle landed

Saturday 6th August 2011 Benfica 2 Arsenal 1, Eusebio Cup Estadio Da Luz, Lisbon

I might have had to miss the great opening day win by Ipswich at Bristol City but I still managed to get some football in. Lisbon was our destination for a few days break and thanks to brilliant hotel staff, we managed to get two tickets for Benfica v Arsenal.
They apologised that we would have to sit with the local fans, we soon explained to the staff we wanted to be with the Benfica fans as we would not want Arsenal to win.

Estadio Da Luz, was our destination and just an 8 stop journey on the metro deposited us in the neighbouring shopping centre, as we left the centre we got our first sight of this superb stadium.

Loads of fans were situated at local stalls selling beer, hot dogs and special scarves. The beer was popular as inside the ground it is Alcohol free lager only! The scarves are also popular as a souvenir of the game as no programmes are on offer.

We were situated in the top tier of this impressive stadia above the tunnel. What a view and the atmosphere soon built as the game got closer and that was with hardly any Arsenal fans making the trip, only a few were seen and most of them seemed to be visiting holidaymakers.

Just before kick off the scarves began to wave and a great cheer rose, why? We soon saw why, as a bird of prey flew around the stadium before landing on a cart on the pitch, slightly more impressive than someone dressed up as a pantomime horse!

The game started and it was hard to pick out who was who- and that included the Arsenal team, Van Persie was noticeable as he came closest to scoring in a first half where Benfica had most of the possession but Arsenal looked the more dangerous. Van Persie eventually opened the scoring and Arsenal went in at the break looking very comfortable.The usual mass substitutions at half time seemed to benefit the Portuguese team more and the second half soon saw Benfica on top with the Brazilian Aimar the most impressive of the new players. Arsenal seemed to have no answer to his trickery and soon resorted to needless fouls, but this negative tactic did not work and Benfica soon took the lead and go onto lift the Eusebio Cup.

The usual TV induced fireworks saw the cup handed over to the Benfica captain by the legend Eusebio himself.

Hard to predict how Arsenal will do this season from watching a pre season game but I was impressed by their new acquisition, Gervinho.

For Benfica, a number impressed, their captain and defender, Luisao and the brilliant play maker Aimar.

The stadium? Five star- visit if you get a chance both the city and the stadium are both worth the short trip south.