Sheepshanks: 'This is not the end'

DAVID Sheepshanks today surveyed the wreckage of last night's 4-1 Coca-Cola Championship defeat at Barnsley and said: “This is not the end.”The Ipswich Town chairman was at Oakwell as the Blues lost an early lead to finish well beaten by a side who have reached the semi-finals of the FA Cup.

Elvin King

DAVID Sheepshanks today surveyed the wreckage of last night's 4-1 Coca-Cola Championship defeat at Barnsley and said: “This is not the end.”

The Ipswich Town chairman was at Oakwell as the Blues lost an early lead to finish well beaten by a side who have reached the semi-finals of the FA Cup.

If Town fans were disgruntled after a 1-1 home draw with Sheffield United last week - and many were - they will be even more downhearted after this affair.

The promotion dream seems a long way off right now.

To be fair the scoreline was not a fair reflection of play, but when you concede four bad goals you can have no excuses.

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Sheepshanks has issued an early rally call for Blues fans to get behind the team in Saturday's home match against Charlton Athletic and resurrect the promotion push.

“If we win on Saturday we will be back in it,” said Sheepshanks. “But we need to play better than last night. And I am sure we will. It is not the end for us.

“The manager will have to get together with his players and pull out a big result against Charlton.

“After this bitter pill we need a win.”

Sheepshanks said that the result hinged on an 83rd minute penalty.

“Their player had lost the ball, and it was harsh. Up until then I was still confident we would hit back at 2-1 down. Fans at home will see the score and think the worst. Our fans who saw the game will think differently. We completely dominated the first half but did not take our chances.”

Brian Howard would have been a good transfer window buy on last night's form, and Sheepshanks agreed that the two-goal Barnsley number ten played well.

“He was an inspirational leader who caught the eye.”

But Sheepshanks sees a positive from slipping below the top six.

He added: “We are experienced enough to know that pressure is greater for teams in the top six. There is now less pressure on us, and after last night's defeat people will not fancy us for a play-off place.

“There are nine games to go, which is a long while.