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Match Previews

MATCH PREVIEW | TOWN V CARDIFF

9 December 2016

Luke Varney is looking to put one over on another one of his former bosses as Cardiff come to Portman Road

Luke Varney believes Town need to make Portman Road a fortress again, and ensure it is a venue that opposing sides fear visiting.

The Blues host a former manager of Reg's in Neil Warnock, as his Cardiff City come calling on Saturday, with Town looking to replicate the result and performance in the 3-0 home win over QPR a fortnight ago.

"I feel like we won the game in the first five minutes against QPR," he told Ipswich Player HD.

"With the start we had, and the intensity, meant that they knew they were in a game so that will be that case again this Saturday, I'm sure.

"We need to make the place hard again, and make us tough to play against because we certainly did that at Portman Road the last time out.

"We're looking forward to another battle and hopefully we can have a lot of chances to make it a good performance.

"I enjoyed my time with Neil, and he probably suits my game well so I had a good run under him.

"It will be nice to see another previous manager of mine, but hopefully I can put another one down like we did Ian Holloway and have a positive result."


Latest from www.itfc.co.uk:

Team News

Town

Mick McCarthy will welcome Brett Pitman back into the squad for the visit of the Bluebirds with the striker having recovered from the ankle injury that has kept him out of action for the past ten weeks. The Blues boss has no new injury worries to deal with, but Luke Hyam, Giles Coke, Paul Digby [all knee] and Tommy Smith [back] remain out.

Cardiff

Rickie Lambert is a doubt for the Bluebirds' trip to Portman Road, with the striker having done nothing but 'straight forward running' in training this week according to his manager, Neil Warnock. A number of his squad are also doubtful through illness too, as the former Rotherham boss admitted there was a sickness bug through the squad this week, putting four unnamed players out of training. Lee Peltier will return from suspension, but Jazz Richards has suffered a setback with a foot injury, and is likely to miss the game.

Where They Stand

Town: 16th  
Cardiff: 22nd

Last Time They Met

Bruno Ecuele Manga's early goal set Cardiff on their way to victory when Town visited the Welsh capital in March. The Gabonese defender rose the highest to meet a Peter Whittingham corner with less than 20 minutes on the clock in a game which produced few clear-cut efforts on goal. Christophe Berra flashed a header just wide of the target and Ben Pringle sliced an effort over the crossbar having picked up Brett Pitman's flick-on, but it was as close as Town came to getting on the scoresheet as they fell to defeat in Wales.


Key Players

Bartosz Bialkowski

Town's goalkeeper has built on what was a superb finish to the 2015/16 campaign with some impressive performances so far this term. He has kept eight clean sheets in 19 appearances in the Championship, with only David Stockdale (11), Scott Carson and Ali Al Habsi (8) keeping more or as many as the Pole. His presence at the back has been vital for the Blues thus far, he will need to maintain his strong form in the second-half of the campaign if Town are to push up the table.


Peter Whittingham

The midfielder has looked back to his best under Neil Warnock, scoring three times in the eight matches he has been taken charge of so far. The set piece specialist also has a further three assists to his name and will prove to be a crucial part of the Bluebirds' squad should they pull further away from the drop zone.

Sky Bet Odds

Town: 7/5
Draw: 21/10
Cardiff: 9/4

Match Officials

Referee: Darren Bond
Assistant Referees: Mark Jones & David Avent
Fourth Official: Christopher Sarginson 



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