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Match Previews

PREVIEW | Ipswich Town vs Rovers

26 February 2021

Rovers will be looking to complete a league double over Ipswich Town when they travel to Portman Road this weekend.

Darren Moore’s side have had a full week between games after Tuesday night’s game at Blackpool was postponed due to a waterlogged pitch at Bloomfield Road. 

 

Ipswich’s recent form 

The Tractor Boys have lost just one of their past six league games stretching back to a 1-1 draw at Crewe Alexandra at the end of January. A 2-0 win at home to Blackpool at the start of February was followed up by their only defeat of the month on the road at Peterborough United three days later.  

They then had consecutive 0-0 draws against Northampton Town and Oxford United respectively, before a superb 1-0 victory at Hull City last time out.  

 

The man in charge 

Former Norwich manager Paul Lambert was appointed as Ipswich boss in October 2018. The club were bottom of the Sky Bet Championship when he took over, and he was unable to keep them in the second tier that season.   

After a positive start to life in Sky Bet League One, Ipswich finished 11th last season, and Lambert was handed a new five-year deal in January 2020. Since taking the job, Lambert has been in charge of 112 Ipswich games, winning 36, drawing 28 and losing 48, giving him an overall win percentage of 32.1%. 

 

Ones to watch 

Gwion Edwards 

Edwards joined Town in the summer of 2018 from fellow Sky Bet League One side Peterborough United for an undisclosed fee. After starting his career with Swansea City, the winger impressed in the EFL following a permanent move to Crawley Town. He spent two years at the Broadfield Stadium before moving to Peterborough where he made more than 50 appearances. 

He has made more than 70 appearances for the Tractor Boys and is now well into his third season with the club, he has also bagged five goals in Sky Bet League One this season. 

 

Alan Judge 

The experienced midfielder has featured for several clubs in the EFL, after his first club Blackburn loaned him out to Plymouth Argyle and Notts County before a permanent move to the Magpies in January 2011. His form at Meadow Lane secured a move back to Blackburn, but he made just 11 appearances after his return to Ewood Park and it wasn’t long before he signed for Brentford. 

It was with the Bees where Judge enjoyed the best spell of his career so far, playing more than 100 times and helping the club establish themselves in the Sky Bet Championship. He joined Ipswich in January 19 and his experience has seen him become an integral part of the side ever since. 

 

James Norwood 

After coming through the system at Exeter City, Norwood made his name in a four-year spell with Forest Green Rovers where he scored 48 goals in just over 150 appearances before a move to Tranmere Rovers in 2015. The centre-forward had even more success during his time at Prenton Park, helping the club earn back-to-back promotions through from the National League up to Sky Bet League One. 

His goals began to attract the interest of clubs throughout the EFL and he signed for Ipswich in the summer of 2019. He scored 11 goals in his debut season at Portman Road, and is approaching 150 career goals in total. 

 

Last time out 

Rovers ran out 4-1 winners when the sides last met at the Keepmoat Stadium back in October. A Joe Wright own goal gave the visitors an early lead, before goals from Cameron John and Ben Whiteman turned the game on its head before half-time. Whiteman scored his second of the game from the penalty spot just past the hour-mark, before Fejiri Okenabirhie capped off the win with a fourth for Rovers just a minute later. 

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