Game #4748

Season | 2001-02 |

Matchday | #42 |

League Game | #31 |
Premier League Match-week | #30 |  

Manager Game | #6 |

Saturday, 23 March 2002

Premier League | Away | Ipswich Town | Portman Road | 25,247 | 

Game Summary

Manager | Graham Taylor | 

KO | 15.00 |
Referee | David Pugh | 
HT Score | 0-0 |
FT Score | 0-0 |
FT Result | Drew |
Last 5 Games | LWLLD | 

League Position | 7th | +1 |

Line Up |

GK Peter Schmeichel | 
FB Mark Delaney | 
BOOKED | 57' |
FB Jlloyd Samuel | 
LB Steve Staunton | 
CB Olof Mellberg | 
M Steve Stone | 
M Thomas Hitzlsperger | 
M George Boateng |
SUB OFF | 80' |
M Gareth Barry | 
F Darius Vassell | 
CF Dion Dublin |
BOOKED | 44' |

Substitutes |

M Ian Taylor for M George Boateng | 80’ | 

Unused Substitutes |

GK Peter Enckelman |
M Paul Merson
M Mustapha Hadji
F Boško Balaban

Cards | 

 Yellow | Dion Dublin | 44’ |

 Yellow | Mark Delaney | 57’ |

Team Stats |

Starting XI Average Age | 26.91 | 

Oldest Player | GK Peter Schmeichel | 38.37 |

Youngest Player | M Thomas Hitzlsperger | 19.98 |

Match Report

The Guardian

Sunday, 24 March, 2002

Match report by Nick Callow

Trap door draws closer for Ipswich

Seven games to go and three of their last four fixtures are against Arsenal, Manchester United and Liverpool - Ipswich Town are back in the relegation zone with not much hope of forcing their way out of it.

They had to win and on paper this looked like being the easiest match of their run-in. They were the better team, but they were held by a stubborn  Aston Villa side and have now failed to win in six games.

Villa, with nothing but pride to play for, tried hard enough, but Ipswich’s eager home support and greater need for points gave them a competitive edge, and there was more zip about their play. Their final pass was too often lacking in quality, though, and the Villa defence were not rattled often enough. 

Peter Schmeichel’s constant ranting was more likely to unsettle the Villa back four, but when Ipswich did break through the Danish goalkeeper played well enough to justify his tantrums. He made one good diving save to keep out a long-range volley from Finidi George in the 13th minute and then pulled off an outstanding, point-blank block to deny Marcus Bent, before reacting instantly to smother the Ipswich striker’s follow-up attempt. 

Dion Dublin was the focus of what little attacking play Villa offered, although he had only a header wide to show for his efforts by half-time. Neither he nor his team-mates really tested Ipswich goalkeeper Matteo Sereni until Darius Vassell burst clear with eight minutes to go and the Italian made an excellent low stop to his right. 


Schmeichel, however, had continued to show great reflexes when Marcus Stewart got on the end of a cross by Jermaine Wright with a skilful header on the hour. Each missed chance, coming so infrequently as they did, added to the anxiety of the Ipswich supporters - and the players, too, looked increasingly jittery. But they all thought they had scored with 22 minutes to go when Jim Magilton tried to steer in a Bent drive, only for Schmeichel’s feet to get in the way again. This time the rebound attempt clattered against a post. 

A tense finish followed, but that proved to be Ipswich’s best and last chance of the match. George Burley’s team will feel they deserved to win, but they have only themselves to blame for failing to do so. 

Indeed, they even might have lost had Sereni not made two superb, fingertip saves in the final minute of time added on at the end.