Campbell strike not enough as Helguson double sees Blues suffer defeat
Town were beaten 2-1 by Cardiff thanks to two second-half goals from Heidar Helguson.
Blues had taken the lead thanks to DJ Campbell’s debut strike, but the Bluebirds hit back in the second-half to ensure they left Suffolk with all three points.
Paul Jewell handed Town debuts to Richie Wellens and Campbell, after the pair joined the Blues on loan, while another new recruit, Bilel Mohsni, had to settle for a place on the bench.
The game started brightly, with Campbell linking up well with Lee Martin, but the striker’s shot was easily saved by David Marshall after two minutes.
Eight minutes later and the hosts came close to breaking the deadlock, Mark Hudson heading over from six yards when he should have hit the target.
Town were looking threatening in attack though and came close to opening the scoring after 17 minutes. A deep cross from Aaron Cresswell found Campbell, who stretched out a leg in front of Marshall but could only divert the ball over the top of the crossbar from inside the six yard box.
Ten minutes later and it took a full stretch dive from Marshall to tip Jay Emmanuel-Thomas’ 25 yard piledriver.
Town were continuing to press for an opener and that almost came just after the half-hour mark, but Daryl Murphy could only direct Danny Higginbotham’s cross onto the base of the post.
But Town’s dominance was rewarded on the stroke of half-time, as Campbell netted a debut goal to see Blues go in ahead at the break.
Martin crossed from the left and Campbell was in the right place at the right time to bundle the ball over the line from close range.
The Bluebirds did go close to drawing level three minutes after the restart, but Peter Whittingham’s dipping volley flew just over the crossbar.
Town were playing some neat football though and when Martin fed Emmanuel-Thomas, the former Arsenal man set off on a run, knocking the ball past Kevin McNaughton but then firing over the top after 55 minutes.
But it was to be the visitors who were next to get on the scoresheet, drawing level after 62 minutes. Scott Loach couldn’t hold Craig Conway’s cross and Helguson was on hand to tap home the rebound.
Loach had to be alert to palm away a Conway effort shortly after the equalising goal, before Daryl Murphy headed an Andy Drury corner over the bar at the other end.
But Cardiff’s persistence was to be rewarded with three minutes remaining, as Helguson netted again for the Bluebirds.
A deep cross to the back post was claimed by Loach and Helguson spun off Cresswell before planting a firm header into the back of the net.
Town thought they had grabbed an equaliser in the dying moments, but Ben Turner’s attempted headed clearance bounced back off his own crossbar and behind for a corner.
That proved to be the last action of the game, as Town suffered a fifth home league defeat of the season.
Town: Loach, Edwards, Chambers, Higginbotham, Cresswell, Emmanuel-Thomas, Wellens (Luongo 74), Drury, Murphy (Mohsni 90), Martin, Campbell (Scotland 59). Subs not used: Lee-Barrett, Smith, Carson, Ainsley.
Cardiff: Marshall, McNaughton (Turner 90), Hudson, Connolly, Taylor, Noone (Conway 56), Cowie, Gunnarsson, Mason (Gestede 64), Whittingham, Helguson. Subs not used: Lewis, Kiss, Kim, Velikonja.