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Match Report

 

Posted Wed 09 May 12 at 12:31 PM

Ipswich Town vs Birmingham

Town drew 1-1 for the second successive game, after holding Birmingham at Portman Road.

Blues came from behind to earn a share of the spoils, after Jay Emmanuel-Thomas' solo goal cancelled out Chris Burke's earlier strike for the visitors.

Paul Jewell made one change to the side that drew with Crystal Palace at the weekend, with Michael Chopra starting in place of Jay Emmanuel-Thomas.

There was also a change of personnel on the bench, with Luke Hyam named amongst the substitutes ahead of young 'keeper Cody Cropper.

Both sides tried to gain a foothold of possession from the kick-off but it was until the 10th minute before the first chance of the game arrived, with Colin Doyle in the Birmingham goal saving well from Chopra after some good initial work on the right from Lee Martin.

The visitors were posing a threat up front and the strike pairing of Marlon King and Nikola Zigic almost combined soon after, with King crossing for the big Serb who was just beaten to the ball by Tommy Smith.

Town created the best chance of the half nine minutes before the break, as Martin expertly threaded Jason Scotland through on goal, but the striker was denied by a good block from Doyle before Daryl Murphy blazed the rebound high over the bar.

Four minutes before half-time and Aaron Cresswell forced a fine save out of Doyle from a well struck free-kick, before a combination of Chopra and Murphy were unable to get a clear sight at goal as the ball became loose in the box and the visitors cleared their lines.

However despite having more of the play, Blues went behind as Burke fired the visitors in front. A neat flowing move involving King and former Town loanee Andros Townsend saw the latter eventually work the ball over to Burke, who curled low into the corner from the edge of the box.

That proved to be the last action of the half as referee Darren Sheldrake blew for half-time seconds later as Town went in behind at the break.

The visitors were looking to pick up from where they left off and should have extended their lead five minutes after the restart. A flowing move saw Wade Elliot release King through the middle, but the striker was foiled by the legs of Arran Lee-Barrett who stood up to the shot well.

Three minutes later and Town almost equalised. Cresswell worked some space down the left before whipping in a cross that Chopra met well, but the striker could only head over Doyle's bar.

Town went close again soon after with the danger again coming from the left-hand side. Murphy crossed into the box and the ball landed at the feet of Martin, but his volley was charged down by David Murphy and deflected inches past the post.

On the hour mark Murphy set off on another charge, after linking up well with Chopra, but his drive from outside the area was well blocked by a defender and spun behind for another corner.

Town were beginning to take control of the game and were only denied an equaliser by the crossbar after 68 minutes. A well worked free-kick allowed substitute Emmanuel-Thomas the space to have a shot from distance that flew past Doyle in the Birmingham goal but rebounded back off the bar with a thud.

Paul Jewell's side again went close with 18 minutes left to play. Drury fed Martin, who cut inside his marker before flashing a shot in at goal that deflected away with Doyle scrambling across his line.T

he visitors instantly countered though, and King was again denied by Lee-Barrett who made a smart save low to his left to beat away the shot after Townsend had played the ball through.

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