Fuller Flavour: No goals from strikers? Who cares!
Ipswich Town columnist Karl Fuller is in cheerful mood - for once - after the Blues rocked Blackpool at the weekend. Here, he reflects on the win, ranks the goals and looks ahead...
Oh we do like to be beside the seaside...
As someone who has lived by the sea for most of my life, I certainly like it and as my local side is FC Clacton, I’ve enjoyed some good times there. So many memories of The Seasiders to look back on and no doubt supporters further up the coast can say the same about their very own Seasiders at Felixstowe and Walton United.
But it is the Seasiders of Blackpool where I also have some good memories developing. Ok, last season’s last-minute defeat was not nice, neither was the 6-0 thrashing at Bloomfield Road in August 2012.
However, in the main, we’ve enjoyed some good results there in recent times. We had a fine 2-0 win in November 2014 thanks to goals from David McGoldrick and Daryl Murphy and one of my personal favourite away days ever came a year earlier in November 2013 where once again, Murphy was on target with an injury-time winner moments after Blackpool had scored an injury-time equaliser as we came out 3-2 winners (Frank Nouble and Paul Taylor were our other scorers that day). And then we had a game of another five goals on Saturday to purr about.
I actually thought that Blackpool looked a decent outfit at Portman Road last season when they left with a much-deserved 2-2 draw to back up their home victory. Those two games had me a little bit worried on Saturday morning as to how we might fare come 3pm.
But by half-time there were no such worries. I know that it is stating the obvious but consistency will be a massive ingredient for getting out of this league. That is something we learnt much to our cost in the end last season.
Whilst on Saturday we lined-up with only Oli Hawkins who was not with us last season, looking at the aforementioned draw at Portman Road where as I said, Blackpool played really well, there was not a single survivor for them from that game.
They really have ripped things up and started from scratch this season. Whereas for us, we might have wanted (and still might want) further additions in particular areas but the first five league games have given us some good rewards for sticking with the same players wherever possible – injuries aside – as well as a consistent formation and style of play. Long may this all continue!
We added a clinical side to our game too with all four goals being of excellent quality. I could not decide which of our goals was my favourite when on Saturday evening I watched the highlights programme on TV – isn’t it great to look forward to watching that again?
I did a lot of rewinding to scrutinise each and just to savour the moment. Much of the last few years have seen me giving that programme a massive swerve! For a while, the stunning finish by Luke Chambers was just edging my vote. He has probably never scored a better goal and probably will not either, such was the sweetness of how he struck the ball.
But marginally even better for me was our fourth goal. The long, inch-perfect pass by Chambers from one side of the pitch to the other, the control of taking the ball with consummate precision by Gwion Edwards and his subsequent run and calm finish was just perfection personified. It completed the perfect afternoon.
Top of the league again, top scorers in the division, joint-top goalscorer in Edwards and everything is rosy. I wondered how supporters of other clubs in League One might look into our start and one statistic that was mentioned on TV that might make these other fans sit up and wonder about us was to wait until our strikers start to score.
I suppose the fact that we have yet to see a striker score in the league might be seen as one miniscule concern along with our injury woes that could hamper us. But with Edwards, Teddy Bishop and Jon Nolan finding the net with regularity, it is not as big a problem as it might have been in past seasons.
Keep playing like we are and the goals for our strikers will come.
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