The Anonymous Widower

Match Thirty-One – Fulham 1 – Ipswich 2

This was a strong performance, that gained all three points at Fulham.

We were all seated in the Putney End and you can see from the pictures that we were low down.

I’ve been to Craven Cottage a couple of times before, usually walking from Putney Bridge station. Today, I took a bus from Hammersmith station and it was easier. Going back I walked to Fulham Palace Road and then got the first bus going west, ending up at West Brompton station, from where I got a train home.

Judging by the small numbers of fans on the buses I would suspect that most home fans either live locally, drive or have their own short cuts to the ground.

Craven Cottage will always be one of those grounds, where watching football is a pleasure.

February 14, 2015 Posted by | Sport | , , | Leave a comment

Match Thirty – Ipswich 2 – Sheffield Wednesday 1

Ipswich finally got their campaign back on track.

One thing that could be improved in evening matches like this, is a proper train home after the match. I don’t want to wait an hour or so in the cold for a rake of Mark 3 coaches hauled by a Class 90 locomotive. Instead  we got a cattle class 321, which stopped everywhere on its way to Liverpool Street.

The train was really shown up by the Class 379 I rode on earlier in the day.

 

February 10, 2015 Posted by | Sport | , , | Leave a comment

Match Twenty-Nine – Rotherham 2 – Ipswich 0

This was the most disappointing match of the year so far in what was the best smaller stadium we’ve visited.

Town are going through a bad spell, but they have had a tough sequence of matches since before Christmas and it just doesn’t seem to go right.

At lest coming home on the train from Sheffield, we got a lot of best wishes from Palace fans after their win at Leicester.

February 7, 2015 Posted by | Sport | , , | Leave a comment

Match Twenty-Eight – Ipswich 0 – Wigan 0

This match was always going to be a disappointment, as the travel was so chancy.

It did show though, how important Daryl Murphy is to the team, as we rarely do well if he’s not in the team.

I think that as he’s a very good talker, his effect on the team may be more than just what he does with his feet and head.

January 31, 2015 Posted by | Sport | , , , | Leave a comment

You Can Do Better Than This; Greater Anglia

There has been a lot of anger from Ipswich Town about the lack of communication from Abellio Greater Anglia over weekend closures of the Great Eastern Main Line. This report on the BBC gives full details.

I took the 12:03 train out of Liverpool Street for Billericay. I had checked on the Internet and knew that this train gave me an arrival in Ipswich around two. But there had been a decided lack of information at Liverpool Street.

1. The staff seemed to have not been well-briefed.

2. Where were the informational posters, saying something like This way for all Chelmsford, Colchester, Ipswich and Norwich passengers?

The consequences was that there was a lot of confusion and an elderly couple travelling to Colchester with me didn’t know whether they should get out at Shenfield or Billericay. I wonder how many passengers missed the stop at Billericay and ended up at Southend!

One thing to which I’m right to object, is that I was paying the same £25.60 for a Senior Standard Class single, that I would pay on Monday for a similar ticket on a faster train all the way to Ipswich in just over an hour. Compare this with the price of  £35.45, that I typically pay for a Senior First Class Return.

Abellio Greater Anglia also provided a Class 321 train without a toilet. Or at least I couldn’t find one. Many passengers would have expected a proper train with facilities and a rather tired Class 321 wasn’t good enough.

At Billericay, the system was much better organised and I even found a toilet. But then the town is in Essex and the county knows how to live on scraps and hand-me-downs.

I can’t complain about the coach that was provided either, except that it took what seemed to be an age to get to Ipswich.

There wasn’t much chaos at Ipswich, and I was able to enter the station to get a much-needed cup of hot chocolate.

The journey had taken two hours as against a normal direct journey of just over an hour. And of course for no reduction in price.

Coming home, I decided that it was better to go the long way round via Cambridge, where I could get a snack and then a train to Tottenham Hale. At least I got a First Class seat all the way, as I had the unused return half of a ticket for the last time I went to Ipswich, when I got a lift back home.

But the train was a rather overcrowded Class 170 train, although I did have a comfortable seat in First. But judging by the number of passengers on the 17:20 train after a match with Ipswich riding high in the Championship, a three car train is not big enough.

I just missed the connecting Tottenham Hale train, so I had to wait in the cold. But I did have time for a pit-stop and to purchase a snack in the Marks and Spencer in the station.

Normally, I get home about seven, but I didn’t get home until nine.

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January 31, 2015 Posted by | Sport, Transport | , , , , | 2 Comments

Match Twenty-Seven – Brighton 3 – Ipswich 2

I like going to Brighton for a match, as the stadium is one of the best and it is just a short walk from the train station. You get comfortable seats, with good views, which can’t be said for many other stadia.

Brighton's Impressive Stadium

Brighton’s Impressive Stadium

Sadly, Ipswich didn’t put on a display to the quality of some of late and on a bitterly cold night they lost by the odd goal in five.

January 21, 2015 Posted by | Sport | , , , | Leave a comment

The Matches That Might Decide The Championship

Ipswich, along with most teams in the Championship have played 26 matches, but some have played one more. No team to have been struck with weather problems, so there isn’t anybody with a bit of catch-up to do.

So what are the important matches to be played?

Bournemouth – Watford(H/Jan30), Wigan(A/Feb7), Derby (H/Feb10), Brentford(A/Feb21), Notts Forest(A/Feb25), Blackburn(H/Feb28), Wolves(H/Mar3), Middlesbrough(H/Mar21), Ipswich(A/Apr3)

Middlesbrough – Brentford(A/Jan31), Notts Forest(A/Mar7),  Ipswich(H/Mar14),  Derby(A/Mar17), Bournemouth(A/Mar21), Watford(A/Apr6), Norwich(A/Apr18)

Ipswich – Norwich(A/Mar1), Leeds(A/Mar4), Brentford(H/Mar7), Middlesbrough(A/Mar14), Watford(A/Mar21), Bournemouth(H/Apr3)

Derby – Bournemouth(A/Feb10), Norwich(A/Mar14), Middlesbrough(H/Mar17), Derby(H/Apr3), Brentford(H/Apr11), Millwall(A/Apr25)

Brentford – Norwich(A/Jan24), Middlesbrough(H/Jan31), Watford(H/Feb10), Bournemouth(H/Feb21), Ipswich(A/Mar7), Derby(A/Apr11)

Watford – Bournemouth(A/Jan30), Brentford(A/Feb10), Norwich(H/Feb21), Watford(A/Mar17), Ipswich(H/Mar21), Derby(A/Apr3), Middlesbrough(H/Apr6). Millwall(A/Apr11)

Norwich – Brentford(H/Jan24), Watford(A/Feb21), Ipswich(H/Mar1), Millwall(A/Mar7), Derby(H/Mar14), Middlesbrough(H/Apr18)

A few notes.

1. As far as Ipswich are concerned, there are four difficult away matches, with those at Norwich and Middlesbrough, probably defining if Ipswich go up automatically.

2. Bournemouth, Middlesbrough and Derby are also still in the FA Cup.

3. Blackpool, who are probably doomed to the drop, visit all the top seven, except Middlesbrough.

4. Wigan and Millwall will fight relegation, so beware a visit there.

I’m only making two predictions!

And that is that Blackpool will be relegated and Norwich will make the play-offs.

January 21, 2015 Posted by | Sport | , | Leave a comment

Match Twenty-Six – Millwall 1 – Ipswich 3

This was an unusual match for me, in that I went both ways between my house and The Den, by using a single bus and a couple of walks to the stops. Admittedly the walk at the Millwall end was longer at fifteen minutes, than the couple or so, it takes to get to the stop for the 21 bus at my house.

When I was at Liverpool University, I may have taken a bus to and from Liverpool or Everton from my first year digs in Huyton, but I can’t think of any other instance in my life. I have gone to both Leyton Orient and Charlton totally by bus, but for those grounds, I did have to change. I took these pictures on my journey and at the match.

 

As to the match, it wasn’t very exciting and since the last meeting between the clubs, Millwall seemed today to have made no progress. They did lose both matches by two goals as well.

Ipswich’s third goal summed up Millwall. The ball was flicked to Jonathan Parr and he proceeded to run across the Millwall goal with it, just outside the penalty area. No attempt was made by the Millwall defenders to close him down, so he tried a shot, which he aimed just inside the post. It went in and looked to be a classy finish. But he shouldn’t have been able to have the shot.

January 17, 2015 Posted by | Sport | , , | Leave a comment

Match Twenty-Five – Ipswich 0 – Derby 1

If the biggest crowd at Portman Road for four years had welcomed Charlton, them the cowd for the visit of Derby must be one of the largest at the ground for a televised Championship match, with the exception of  an East Anglian Derby.

Sadly though, Ipswich lost after giving away a silly goal and are now down to third place, one point behind Bournemouth and Derby.

Network Rail have decided to play rebuilding the railway again, so despite going to the match in style, I came home in an uncomfortable Class 321 train, with no wi-fi or onboard catering.

I don’t think I’ll be going First again, until normal service is resumed.

It’s funny, but we’ve played two lunchtime matches at home this season and lost both one-nil. The other was against Norwich.

We shouldn’t play any more!

 

 

January 10, 2015 Posted by | Sport, Transport | , , | Leave a comment

Match Twenty-Four – Ipswich 3 – Charlton 0

The biggest crowd at Portman Road for four years welcomed Charlton, who were efficiently dismissed by three goals to nil.

So Ipswich cling to their second position, just one point behind the leaders; Bournemouth.

I do think that Greater Anglia could provide a better service after an evening match.

It had been a very cold night and the match had overrun a bit, so perhaps if the coffee and other drinks had been available later, it might have made the journey home for a lot of fans better.

As it is I went home in an ordinary Class 360, rather than the Mark 3 carriage with an attached buffet car you get on Saturdays.

But at least getting back to the capital afer a midweek evening match is easier from Ipswich, than quite a few places I could name.

 

 

December 30, 2014 Posted by | Sport, Transport | , , | Leave a comment