This bottom three malarky. Even I, pessimist though I am, did not foresee this at the start of this season.
I'm fed up, as are many other Town fans, of our club being referred to as, "Roy Keane's Ipswich". No, we were Ipswich long before he came al0ng. Over 125 years in fact. In fact, it's hardly Roy Keane's Ipswich at all. Apart from Leadbitter, Delaney, Rosenior and Edwards, he hasn't signed anyone else who plays regularly (Colin Healy *cough*). Instead, he falls out with players for at least 3 months and then shoves them back in the team (Garvan, David/Richard Wright, hopefully not Pablo).
Now that we've signed Stern John (Stern John!), Keane is hoping he'll be a short term fix to a long term problem. We've never had a 20-a-season striker since Darren Bent. In fact, since 2004/05, when we finished 3rd and messed it all up against West Ham in the play-off semi finals. Off trotted Bent to the Promised Land (always feel proud whenever I hear that he's been considered for England or something, despite the fact it was many moons ago). Off went Shefki Kuqi. Between those two and Tommy Miller, we lost over 40 goals. It's something we've never recovered from.
Our defence has always been rubbish. Recently it's been looking slightly less shaky (I write this the day before we play Cardiff away. It could all implode, as is the norm), but now our Bosnian wonder-goalie has been recalled back to Portsmouth and faced Manchester United earlier today. Pfft, who would you rather face? Cardiff? Hahahaha!
I'm not able to go tomorrow (hello Flatford! Again.) but I'm off to Bristol City and Scunthorpe. I've been to Coventry, Middlesbrough, Barnsley (HEARTBREAK), Plymouth and Reading thus far this season, and the only match we've played relatively well in was against Coventry.
So, problems I can see at the moment:
- Jon Walters - Something's up. He's not been playing as well as we know he can. Is he injured? I doubt it. Does he need a rest? I would probably say yes. He may be a big player for us, but at the moment, he's not playing well. He's far better on the right wing, and yet, I think, Carlos Edwards plays in this position. Which leads me onto my second problem...
- The midfield - As always. Grant Leadbitter, the poor sod, really has no idea what he's got into. He's by far the best player on the pitch and yet he was stuck next to Liam Trotter for most of the start of the season. Carlos Edwards, on the right, goes too far into the middle, leaving the entire right wing exposed. Poor Liam Rosenior! Oh David Norris and Luciano Civelli, curse your knobbly knees!
- The defence - If only they learnt to defend for over 90 minutes. We'd be mid-table and laughing right now. But no. Instead, what happens? Last minute equalisers against Sheffield United and Watford. Last minute winner against Barnsley. Injuries have not helped. Nor has Gareth McAuley deciding to play like an idiot again. He's got better now. He's remembered how to play.
- Roy Keane - PLEASE KEEP THE SAME BLOODY LINE-UP FOR CONSECUTIVE GAMES AT LEAST ONCE THIS SEASON. I don't care if Pablo runs over your dog or David Wright tells you your beard looks like tiny hamsters are gnawing at your face, don't drop players who have played well for ones who are clearly crap. Pablo is an invaluable player. He holds the ball up. If the chance comes to him, he will always try and tap it in. To me, we appointed Roy Keane to try and attract the big news media. To make Ipswich Town more famous. Boy, did that happen. But for all the wrong reasons. Now the media vultures circle above Keane's head waiting for the next outburst to write about.
- Finally, how I miss Gio. But he's not going to come back. Evidently, the problems were there before Magilton got sacked.
It's going to be a long, long season.