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Stockport County (0) 0 - 1 (1) Ipswich Town

Division 1 1999-00

Saturday, April 15, 2000

Referee: T Heilbron

Manager: Unknown

Edgeley Park

Attendance: 8,501

Manager: George Burley

Match Number: 2848

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 David Johnson 

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Match Report

Stockport County 0 Ipswich Town 1

THE result was manifestly more important than the abject performance, a fact to which George Burley, the Ipswich mnager, readily testified.

His off-key side collected three crucial away points on a day when their main challengers for the second automatic promotion position, Manchester City and Barnsley, were held in drawn games at Grimsby and Port Vale respectively.

Burley's opposite number at Stockport, Andy Kilner, considered the three contenders striving to accompany Charlton into the Premiership and unhesitatingly nominated Ipswich because of their greater all round quality.

Yet Kilner has more pressing problems to concern him at the other end of the First Division. A disastrous run of 18 games without success has plunged Stockport, who briefly led the table in the season's infancy, to 19th place, eight points clear of immediate danger with four games remaining.

Kilner claims his side will not go down and believes they are worthy of mid-table recognition although the accepted 50-point safety margin has still to be achieved.

Burley, too, looked ahead to state that four victories against QPR (away), Crystal Palace (home), Charlton (away) and Walsall (home) will take Ipswich into the Premiership. Burley admitted: "We didn't play well against Stockport, but at this stage you are merely looking to win games. You can't always play well although we did enough to get the three points."

David Johnson's clinical strike when exploiting an untypical error by Mike Flynn, the Stockport captain, 40 seconds from half-time was sufficient to preserve Town's 100 per cent record in four League games and one cup tie at Edgeley Park.

However, Saturday's display was arguably one of the poorest of the season from Ipswich, who had England-rated goalkeeper Richard Wright, equalling a club record of 175 consecutive appearances, to thank for two splendid second-half saves from Ian Lawson and Kevin Cooper that briefly highlighted a tepid encounter.

Daily Telegraph

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