since 1878

Ipswich Town (1) 3 - 1 (1) Sunderland

Coca-Cola Championship 2006-07

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Referee: Mick Russell

Manager: Jim Magilton

Portman Road 15:00

Attendance: 23,311

Manager: Roy Keane

Match Number: 3168


 Darren Currie (31)
 Alan Lee (63)
 Alan Lee (66)
 Jason DeVos (og) (28)


C BrownT Hysen (46)
D WhiteheadG Leadbitter (46)
N CollinsL Lawrence (70)


 Jason DeVos (52)
 Mark Noble (61)
 Gavin Williams (72)
 Castro Sito (88)
 S Varga (18)
 C Brown (22)
 D Whitehead (31)
 Ross Wallace (86)



B Alnwick

N Collins

K Cunningham

S Varga

R Elliott

L Miller

D Whitehead

G Kavanagh

Ross Wallace

C Brown

D Yorke



D Ward

L Lawrence

D Collins

T Hysen

G Leadbitter

Match Report

Keane calls for patience after first setback

If Roy Keane was under any illusions as to the difficulty he faces in hauling Sunderland out of the Championship, the size of his task was made abundantly clear after he tasted defeat for the first time in his managerial career. Ipswich extended their unbeaten sequence to six league games, battling their way to a wholly deserved victory which leaves Keane with some serious head-scratching to do.

The former Manchester United captain spent 90 minutes barking orders at his players only to see them press the self-destruct button, squandering a one-goal lead through a combination of individual errors and ill-discipline. Having guided Sunderland to three wins from four games - bucking a trend of five consecutive defeats - Keane was visibly distraught to be leaving Portman Road empty-handed.

Asked how much he was hurting after the defeat, he said: "Very much so, let me tell you. I didn't lose that many as a player but this definitely hurts. Probably more.

"When you're a player, sometimes you are in your own little world, you're looking after yourself, making sure you're playing well and you are fit," he explained. "As a manager you're obviously taking responsibility for the fans and the general feeling of the club. That's my responsibility and that's why it is harder to take."

If Jim Magilton had not warned his players what to expect from a side managed by Keane, they were soon to find out. In a first half which saw Sunderland challenges cause three mass brawls, the visitors picked up five cautions and were fortunate not to have Chris Brown sent off for elbowing Castro Sito in the face.

With Graham Kavanagh disrupting the Ipswich midfield with Keane-like authority, the visitors took the lead when Jason De Vos inexplicably headed a Ross Wallace free-kick into his own net. However, the lack of discipline spoiled it for Keane's men and, within minutes of taking the lead, an impetuous foul from the captain Dean Whitehead allowed Darren Currie to pull the home side level with a crisp, curling strike from the free-kick.

Keane's tactical naivety shone through after half-time when he changed to a 4-5-1 formation. Twenty minutes later, after a pair of dreadful defensive errors from Neill Collins and Stanislav Varga, Alan Lee had put the game out of sight with a brace.

Wallace was sent off for clattering into Billy Clarke late on but Keane was quick to snap at those who suggested Sunderland were over-physical. "Listen, it's a game of football," he said. "You've got to tackle people. Jim used to tackle people, I used to tackle people and sometimes you are late. You've come to watch a game of football; maybe you're better off watching snooker."

Keane has demanded that his players bounce back when they play Sheffield Wednesday at the Stadium of Light on Saturday but he admits there is still a great deal to do before his side can afford to contemplate the thought of promotion. "There's a lot of work to be done but Rome wasn't built in a day," he said. "I've been saying since I took the job that one or two results probably covered over the cracks.

"People on the outside were maybe getting carried away but the staff, myself and the players know there's a lot of hard work ahead. We never thought we were the finished article, far from it."

David Ornstein (The Guardian)

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2006-07 Reports