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Match Reports

Match Report : 22/12/2012

22 December 2012

Town extended the unbeaten home record under Mick McCarthy, after holding Bristol City to a 1-1 draw at Portman Road.

Blues had to come from behind to claim a share of the spoils, with Tommy Smith cancelling out Neil Danns’ opener for the visitors.

Mick McCarthy selected the same starting line up that faced Leeds last week, with the one change seeing Luke Hyam replace Bilel Mohsni on the bench.

The game started at a bright pace with both sides fashioning early chances. First Luke Chambers did well to charge down a close range effort from Paul Anderson, before the Town defender then went close at the other end, just failing to make enough contact with Tommy Smith’s left-wing cross.

However the deadlock was broken after 11 minutes, with Danns firing the visitors in front after lashing the ball into the bottom corner from 25-yards after Town had only half-cleared their lines.

Blues almost drew level five minutes later, as Daryl Murphy nodded the ball into the path of DJ Campbell but the QPR loanee was denied by a great stop from Tom Heaton, before Liam Fontaine then deflected the rebound behind for a corner.

Jon Stead, who enjoyed an 18-month stay at Portman Road earlier in his career, linked up well with the lively Albert Adomah but his shot was comfortably saved by Stephen Henderson.

The visitors then had a great chance to double their lead after 22 minutes, with Adomah skipping past Cresswell before pulling the ball back to Danns who saw his goal-bound effort cleared off the line by former Robin, Bradley Orr.

Blues were looking for a way back into the game and Lee Martin was unfortunate to see his dipping effort sail just over the bar from distance.

But Bristol City were looking the more dangerous in attack and Stead soon fed Adomah down the right, but the Ghanaian fired his effort over the bar when clean through on goal.

Those missed chances from the visitors were to be punished, as Blues drew level after 32 minutes. A corner was headed back into the danger area by Chambers and Smith was on hand to fire the ball into the top corner, with an acrobatic shot on the turn.

Town were now playing with more confidence and a long-range effort from Guirane N’Daw caused problems for Heaton, who scampered across his line to stop the deflected shot nine minutes before the referee blew for half-time.

Blues began the second-half well and Murphy went close with a left-footed half-volley that flew just wide five minutes after the restart.

The visitors did go close to equalising just before the hour mark, as Paul Anderson raced clear and rounded Henderson, before the Town stopper recovered well to pounce on Anderson's effort at goal.

Good persistent work from Murphy saw him win the ball for Town in the middle of the pitch, allowing Drury to run with the ball before trying his luck with an effort that flew over the bar after 68 minutes.

Blues were beginning to up the tempo and substitutes Jay Emmanuel-Thomas and Michael Chopra both had chances to score. First Emmanuel-Thomas fired wide after showing a neat turn of pace, before Chopra was then denied by a great save from Heaton with 11 minutes remaining.

Town then had a great chance to snatch all three points in injury time, as Drury picked out Martin but the midfielder’s effort was blocked on the line and cleared away from danger.

Both sides piled men forward in search of a winner but in the end both camps had to be satisfied with a point apiece.

Town are next in action on Boxing Day, making the trip to the Valley to take on Charlton. 

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