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Match Report | Ipswich Town 2-0 Rochdale

26 September 2020

Rochdale’s first-ever visit to Ipswich Town’s Portman Road ended in defeat, despite a spirted performance from Brian Barry-Murphy’s side against one of the division's fancied teams for promotion.

Two goals in six second-half minutes secured the victory for the home side. Teddy Bishop put the hosts ahead, before Edwards doubled their lead.

There were two changes to the teams that lined up against Portsmouth last weekend, as Ryan McLaughlin and Stephen Humphrys missed out through injury, being replaced by Matty Done and debutant Jake Beesley who joined the Club on Thursday.

McLaughlin was a doubt going into the match after suffering a hamstring problem during the game against Pompey, while Humphrys is out for 6-8 weeks, having damaged his medial ligament in the same fixture.

The sides went in level at the break following an entertaining first half in wet and blustery conditions.

There were shouts for a Dale penalty after seven minutes, when Alex Newby went down inside the area after Aaron Morley’s ball into the box was punched weakly away by Tomas Holy, causing problems for the hosts.

Brian Barry-Murphy’s side continued to ramp up the pressure, but Ipswich stood firm, blocking a powerful shot from Matty Lund, which was heading goal wards.

There was another spot-kick claim soon after, as Newby appeared to have been upended for a second time. Again, the appeals were turned down. 

Morley came within inches of breaking the deadlock with 12 minutes of the clock, when his rasping drive from 25-yards rippled the side netting on its way past the post.

Gavin Bazunu had little to do so far, but when he was called into action sixty second later, he produced an outstanding save to deny Oli Hawkins from close range. The Ipswich forward powered a header at goal from just inside the six-yard box, but somehow the ‘keeper managed to fly across his goal and get a hand to it, to tip it wide of the target.

They were then denied by the woodwork, with Hawkins again getting in on the action, as he turned and curled a shot off the cross bar from just inside the area.

The former Pompey man tested again a short while later, when his on-target header was cleared off the line by Captain Eoghan O’Connell.

A long spell of possession followed for Dale and, after going on to win a corner, Ollie Rathbone fired narrowly over the bar after it was played out to him 25-yards from goal.

Shortly before the interval, there was an important clearance on the line from the ever-reliable Jimmy Keohane to keep Freddie Sears’ looping cross, which had evaded everyone, out of the back of the net. Dale broke away and Keohane got forward to deliver the ball into the area for Newby, who headed wide.

HT | IPSWICH TOWN 0-0 ROCHDALE

Two minutes after the restart Jake Beesley was upended inside the area as he attempted to get on the end of a Rathbone ball, but like on the two previous occasions, the appeals were turned away.  

And the hosts went on to the open the scoring in the 53rd minute. A ball in from the left into the area fell kindly for Bishop, who struck home from 10-yards.

They doubled their advantage six minutes later, when Edwards pounced on Sears’ deflected shot and fired in at the near post from close range.

Rochdale’s first change of the game came shortly after the hour mark, with Ryan making way for Stephen Dooley.

Despite the score line, Dale were very much still in the game and the Ipswich defence had to remain resolute to firstly to keep out Beesley and then Done’s follow up effort.

In the 75th minute, Rochdale had the ball in the back of the net only to see it ruled out. Newby thought he’d beaten the offside trap to latch on the end of a through ball, but after finishing coolly beyond Holy, a very late offside flag went up to deny him his first league goal for the Club.

Five minutes later, Rathbone fired over the bar, as Dale continued their search for the goal they deserved.
Beesley’s last action of the game saw him have a low shot held by Holy, after being played in by Done. 

In late double substitution, the forward made way for Tavares, while Ethan Brierley came on to replace Morley.

Rathbone had a powerful effort blocked just inside the area and Tavares saw a shot deflected behind, as Rochdale continued to pressure until the final whistle.

FT | IPSWICH TOWN 2-0 ROCHDALE

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