By Stuart Watson
Saturday, December 22, 2012
Ipswich v Bristol City: IPSWICH Town and Bristol City played out an instantly forgettable 1-1 draw at Portman Road to leave both clubs in a five-way fight for Championship safety.
Neil Danns gave the visitors the lead after 11 minutes with a crisp low shot from the edge of the box, before Tommy Smith hooked an equaliser into the top corner following a corner with 32 minutes on the clock.
Played in wet conditions, it was generally a dour affair though as Town lacked imagination against a Robins outfit who played five at the back and looked to counter-attack.
Only five points now separates the bottom five, with 20th-placed Town back to within three points of the relegation zone.
After Danns had rifled his side into an early lead, Aaron Cresswell’s awkward clearance hitting Andy Drury and falling nicely for the visiting midfielder, the south west side continued to create chances on the break.
Danns had a glorious chance from 12 yards blocked by Bradley Orr, with the Blues not dealing with City’s overlapping wing-backs.
The closest lacklustre Ipswich had come to scoring was when keeper Tom Heaton saved DJ Campbell’s angled strike and defender Liam Fontaine cleared the loose ball.
Their equaliser, soon after the hour, rather came out of the blue, therefore, with centre-back Smith doing excellently to hook the ball over his shoulder and into the top corner after Luke Chambers had nodded down Lee Martin’s deep corner.
The game descended into an even more scrappy affair in the second half as the visitors seemed happy to defend a point and Ipswich were devoid of any imagination or quality in their search for a winner.
Front duo DJ Campbell and Daryl Murphy were replaced by Michael Chopra and Jay Emmanuel-Thomas. And while the substitutes tried to get things going, it was to no avail as promising moves continually broke down at the crucial moment.
The hosts had a glorious chance to win it in stoppage-time, however, when the ball fell to Martin 12 yards out following a sweeping move he could only produce a tame shot straight at the keeper.
It rather summed up the match.
- Reaction to follow.