13.09.22 Match Report - Ipswich v Rovers

Defeat for The Gas in Suffolk.

Goals from Connor Chaplin and Wes Burns consigned Rovers to a fifth game without a win.

Rovers made three changes for the game, with Anderson, Clarke, and McCormick replacing Coutts, Loft, and Marquis.

Before kick-off, there was an immaculately-observed minute's silence for Her late Majesty the Queen, who passed away last Thursday, followed by the National Anthem.


James Belshaw was twice called into early action on the occasion of his 50th league start for the Gas. First, in the first minute, he parried a header onto the bar, and then, a minute later, he saved low from a dangerous cross by Ladapo as Chaplin looked to pounce.

Portman Road reverberated with applause in the 11th minute as both sets of fans showed their appreciation for former striker Marcus Stewart, who was diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease last week.

Ipswich skipper Morsy was shown the yellow card for a foul on McCormick before, in the 16th minute, Rovers were forced into an early change as Harvey Saunders replaced Harry Anderson. 

Belshaw clutched the ball down low to his left to claim a header following an Ipswich corner before the home side won another set-piece in the 18th minute. From it, Chaplin swivelled to fire goalwards; again, Belshaw was equal to it. 

Ipswich struck the first goal in the 23rd minute as Chaplin fired home past a helpless Belshaw after Morsy worked his way to the byline and set him up.

A flying Belshaw stopped Burns from heading Town two to the good in the 25th minute. The Gas enjoyed their first concerted spell of possession as the half-hour mark approached, with both Clarke and then Collins advancing into decent positions before being dispossessed. 

Harness was fouled in the 40th minute to give the home side a free-kick which Rovers were able to clear. From nowhere, Rovers almost found a leveller, as a superb Antony Evans shot from distance rattled the crossbar with Town 'keeper Walton clutching thin air. Unfortunately, it bounced out to safety, with no Rovers player on-hand for the rebound. 


The best move of the match saw Clarke exchange passes with Collins down the left, before firing low towards the bottom corner, which Walton did well to divert behind for a corner. That was the last of the action, with the Gas ending the half on top, but going into the interval 1-0 down.

Rovers started the second half in equally positive fashion and Luca Hoole rifled on target in the 48th minute, only for Walton to beat the ball away. From the clearance, Evans was fouled to give the Gas a free-kick. Evans took responsibility, thirty yards out, but Walton was able to gather comfortably. It was another effort on target, though, and the home fans were beginning to get a little restless. 

The Portman Road faithful were baying for two penalties in the 53rd minute, both for handball, both waved away by referee Young. 

Just as it looked like Rovers were finding a way back into the game, Town made it two in the 54th minute when a long-range Lee Evans shot flew past an unsighted Belshaw.

Rovers made a double substitution in the 62nd minute, with Coutts and Marquis replacing Clarke and McCormick. Luca Hoole was booked for a foul in the 65th minute, giving Town a free-kick thirty-five yards from goal, which Burns fired wastefully over. 

Play was stopped after 70 minutes for Marquis to receive treatment, with the striker able to continue. From the restart, Burns fired well wide on the volley from distance. There was another double substitution for the Gas as Evans and Collins made way for Whelan and birthday boy Syl Jasper. 

Bobby Thomas was booked for a late challenge as the game entered its final ten minutes. Kilgour was then alert to clear the danger as Town threatened again. 

Thomas then received a second yellow in the 84th minute for hauling Morsy to the floor, leaving Rovers a man down for the remainder of the game. Belshaw saved from Chaplin as Town pressed for a third. 


Rovers' misery was then compounded in injury time as last man Alfie Kilgour was shown a straight red for fouling Chaplin.

Next up for Rovers is the visit of Lincoln City to The Mem on Saturday, 17th September. (3pm KO)

IPSWICH TOWN: Christian Walton, Leif Davis, Sam Morsy ©, Luke Woolfenden, Wes Burns, Lee Evans, Freddie Ladapo, Conor Chaplin, Marcus Harness, Cameron Burgess, Janoi Donacien.

Substitutes: Vaclav Hladky, Dom Ball, Tyreece John-Mules, Gassan Ahadme, Kayden Jackson, Greg Leigh, Kyle Edwards

BRISTOL ROVERS: James Belshaw, Lewis Gordon, Alfie Kilgour, Sam Finley (c), Aaron Collins, Harry Anderson (Saunders 17), Trevor Clarke (Marquis 62), Antony Evans, Luke McCormick (Coutts 62), Luca Hoole, Bobby Thomas.

Substitutes: Anssi Jaakkola, Zain Westbrooke, John Marquis (62), Sylvester Jasper, Paul Coutts (62), Harvey Saunders (17), Glenn Whelan.

Referee: Alan Young

Attendance: 22,209 (300 away).

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