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‘It’s been tough... I want to be scoring goals’ - Sears on needing to adapt to fit in at Ipswich

PUBLISHED: 10:31 06 February 2018 | UPDATED: 10:31 06 February 2018

Freddie Sears on the prowl against the Sunderland defence. Picture Pagepix

Freddie Sears on the prowl against the Sunderland defence. Picture Pagepix

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Freddie Sears accepts he needs to move with the times if he is to secure a regular return to the Ipswich Town starting XI.

The 28-year-old started at Sunderland on Saturday without a goal in 292 days, 29 games and 1,134 minutes, and was again used in a wide role on an afternoon when his pressure forced Adam Matthews to put through his own net before the break.

Sears, frustrated by his lack of action but knowing he has not performed well enough to force his way into the side, still sees himself as a central striker but believes the game has changed to the extent that he will have to make the most of his role on the flanks.

MORE: Sears’ Sunderland display was far from perfect... but it was definitely a step in the right direction

“It’s been tough, I’ve been out the team and the boys have been doing well and I can’t have any complaints,” Sears said.

Callum Connolly leaps on Freddie Sears after Ipswich Town took a 2-0 lead at Sunderland via Adam Matthews' own goal. Photo: Pagepix Callum Connolly leaps on Freddie Sears after Ipswich Town took a 2-0 lead at Sunderland via Adam Matthews' own goal. Photo: Pagepix

“You have to work hard, get your head down and then be ready when called upon and hopefully I can get a run of games and pick up some form again. I’ve come in sometimes and not done as well as I should have but today I think I did well, so happy days.

“I want to be scoring goals but I’m playing a slightly different position which is probably not my best position. I’m doing it for the team.

“I think the game’s changing now. A 4-4-2 with me playing as one of two up front is my best position – I think that showed when I first came here and me and Murph (Daryl Murphy) were up there.

MORE: Faint play-off hopes still alive which is good news. But why were there no academy players in the Town starting XI on Saturday?

Sears has had to make do with a place on the bench of late. Picture: STEVE WALLER Sears has had to make do with a place on the bench of late. Picture: STEVE WALLER

“But it’s different now. In football you see a lot of sides with one up top and I’m probably not going to be considered as the one – it’s normally a bigger man or a guy who’s good in the air.”

Despite his lack of action, which has seen him start just nine times this season, Sears is still happy to have the support of his manager and team-mates – something in clear evidence as the Town players rushed to celebrate Matthews’ own goal with him.

“The gaffer has been brilliant, I’ve been around football long enough so I know how it works but the boys have been brilliant too,” he said.

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The striker still sees his best position as being doing the middle.  Picture: STEVE WALLER The striker still sees his best position as being doing the middle. Picture: STEVE WALLER

“Bersant’s been brilliant, Garns (Joe Garner), Wags (Martyn Waghorn) and Didzy (David McGoldrick) when he’s played so it’s been tough for me, but the gaffer and TC have always been positive, told me to wait my time and be ready to take your chance when you come in.

“To come back in at a place like this and put in a shift is something I think the team appreciates.”

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