Bishop and Edwards on target in third 2-0 League win for Town
It was a case of déjà vu for Blues at Portman Road this afternoon as Teddy Bishop and Gwion Edwards were on target in a 2-0 win for Paul Lambert's side.
The pair had both scored on the opening weekend of the 2020/21 League One campaign against Wigan at home, and were again the men that delivered against Rochdale this time around.
Today's result against The Dale means Town have started the campaign with three 2-0 wins on the spin, collecting nine points from a possible nine.
Lambert made just one change from last weekend's trip to Bristol Rovers, Oli Hawkins replacing James Norwood up front.
The visitors threatened early on through Aaron Morley. He went close to opening the scoring but his dipping drive from 20 yards out dropped a yard wide of Tomas Holy's right post.
A minute later Gavin Bazunu produced a stunning save for the visitors. A deft pass from Andre Dozzell found Bishop, with the latter then floating the ball to the edge of the six yard box. Hawkins leapt and met it well, but Bazunu, on loan from Manchester City for the season, clawed it away magnificently.
Hawkins was again involved for Blues in the 16th minute - his left-footed shot on the turn striking the outside of the post.
The Town frontman made his aerial presence felt again approaching the half-hour mark. This time a Stephen Ward cross found him - and once again he met it well - but his downward header was cleared off the line by Rochdale captain Eoghan O'Connell.
Rochdale then threatened but Oliver Rathbone's sweet strike from the edge of the box struck the stanchion.
Town went up the other end and produced a neat move that saw Jon Nolan go for goal from just outside the area, but the midfielder's effort was well held by Bazunu who got low to his right.
The visitors again produced a last-ditch clearance as the half-time whistle neared. Freddie Sears' cross dropped right under the bar but was smashed off the line by Jimmy Keohane.
The first chance after the interval came in the 51st minute. O'Connell hacked down Bishop about 25 yards out but Sears fired the resulting free-kick straight into The Dale wall.
The deadlock was broken in the 53rd minute. Hawkins collected a sharp Ward pass and teed up Bishop who was surging into the penalty area. The midfielder took the ball in his stride before clipping into the bottom corner.
And six minutes later Blues made sure of the three points when Edwards latched on to a loose ball in the box and fired underneath Bazunu with his left foot.
Chances were harder to come by in the final half an hour of the match, but Toto Nsiala was excellent for Town when the away side did look dangerous. On three occasions the centre-half put his body on the line as he blocked fierce strikes. He also produced a stunning slide tackle to prevent Holy being forced into action in the Blues net.
The hosts saw out the game fairly comfortably to maintain their 100 per cent start to the campaign.
Town: Holy, Chambers (C), Nsiala, Wilson, Ward, Dozzell, Nolan, Bishop (Downes 67'), Edwards, Hawkins (Norwood 75'), Sears (Lankester 76'). Subs not used: Cornell, Donacien, Kenlock, Huws.
Rochdale: Bazunu, McShane, O'Connell (C), Morley (Brierley 88'), Newby, Beesley (Tavares 88'), Keohane, Rathbone, Done, Ryan (Dooley 62'), Lund. Subs not used: Lynch, McNulty, Hopper, Dunne.
Booked: Ryan, O'Connell, Nolan.