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Match Reports

Match Report : 15/03/2016

15 March 2016

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Report: Ipswich 2 Rovers 0

A Daryl Murphy double condemned Rovers to a disappointing away defeat on Tuesday evening.

The Irish international struck two second half goals to leave Paul Lambert's side still searching for their first away win in the league in 2016.

Rovers had the better of an open first half with Ipswich keeper Bartosz Bialkowski denying Simeon Jackson and Elliott Bennett, whilst Jason Steele kept out a curling effort from Brett Pitman.

But after a tight start to the second half it was the hosts who got their noses in front as Murphy converted a 67th penalty after Luke Chambers was pushed in the area.

Rovers struggled to gain any forward momentum after that, and three minutes from time they were caught on the counter as the Ipswich forward grabbed his second with a fine strike from the edge of the box.

With Rovers playing their tenth match in 31 days the manager took the opportunity to refresh his squad for the Portman Road trip with five changes from the side that faced Leeds United at the weekend.

Adam Henley, Corry Evans, Matt Grimes, Chris Brown and Simeon Jackson all came into the starting eleven, with Ben Marshall, Tony Watt, Jordi Gomez, and Darragh Lenihan dropping to the substitute's bench. Danny Graham missing out with a sore back.

Daryl Murphy stung the gloves of Jason Steele early on, but it was home goalkeeper Bartosz Bialkowski who was much the busier of the two keepers in a close first half.

Jackson had scored his first goal in Rovers colours on Saturday and almost grabbed another on eight minutes. The Canadian showed good anticipation with a clever flick from Grimes' centre, but the stopper managed to get down to his right to claw the ball behind.

Two minutes later and Rovers went closer. Elliott Bennett with a brilliant free kick that Shane Duffy attacked but Bialkowski somehow got fingertips to the ball to keep it out.

Jonathon Douglas headed over a Jonas Knusden centre on the quarter-hour but it was Rovers who were continuing to pose more of an attacking threat.

Lovely build-up play involving Grimes, Brown and Bennett saw the ball worked into a shooting position for Hope Akpan but the midfielder cleared the crossbar.

In what was quite an open spectacle, Steele then saved well to keep out a Brad Pitman curler, before Grimes forced Bialkowski into making yet another save.

The home side came more into the game as the first half drew to a close, but aside from a Murphy shot that struck fellow striker Freddie Sears, the Rovers goal wasn't unduly threatened.

Rovers made a change in midfield when play resumed as Corry Evans, who looked to be struggling with injury towards the latter stages of the first half, was replaced by Darragh Lenihan.

But like the first half it was Murphy with the opening effort of the second as he lashed a fierce effort just beyond Steele's far post.

At the other end Jackson let fly following an Akpan knockdown, but his opportunist strike was well off target, before a strong run from Henley saw him find Brown at the near post but his shot on the turn flashed wide.

But just past the hour mark the home side were awarded a penalty after Ipswich captain Luke Chambers went down in the area as Rovers cleared a corner. Murphy made no mistake from the spot as he steered the ball into the bottom right corner.

That prompted Lambert into a double change as Watt and Gomez were introduced, Grimes and Jackson the men to make way.

And it was Watt with the next effort at goal for Rovers as he cut in from the left corner of the box, but his near-post shot flashed just the wrong side of the upright.

But with Rovers committing more bodies forward they were hit on the counter-attack with three minutes remaining.

As Rovers lost possession play was quickly moved forward with substitute Luke Varney finding Murphy and he cut inside before bending his shot beyond Steele and into the back of the net to clinch all three points for the home side.

IPSWICH: Bialkowski, Knudsen, Chambers (c), Smith, Berra, Skuse (sub Foley 76 mins), Murphy, Pitman (sub Varney 64 mins (sub Digby 90+4 mins), Hyam, Sears, Douglas.

Subs not used: Gerken (GK), Pringle, Bru, Toure.

Goals: Murphy 67 (pen), 87 mins.

Booked: Hyam.

ROVERS: Steele, Henley, Duffy, Hanley (c), Spurr, Evans (sub Lenihan 46 mins), Akpan, Grimes (sub J. Gomez 75 mins), Bennett, Jackson (sub Watt 75 mins), Brown.

Subs not used: Raya (GK), Marshall, Ward, Conway.

Goals: None.

Booked: Evans.

Attendance: 16,488 (including 214 Rovers fans)

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