Ipswich Town – FA Cup Woes…

They were proud winners of the World’s oldest cup competition back in 1978, a Roger Osborne goal was enough to see off Arsenal in front of a reported 100,000 at Wembley all those years ago.

However, as 2018/19 season’s 4th round gets underway this week there will be a usual sight for fans of Ipswich Town, as per the last 9 seasons they won’t be participating.

A defeat in early January to League One Accrington Stanley didn’t prove to be a shock based on current league positions but it does continue a terrible tradition that they seem to have got themselves into.

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Their last FA Cup victory was way back in 2010. A 2-1 victory over 9 man Blackpool in front of just over 7000 people at Bloomfield road.

A late Owen Garvan strike saw the Tractor Boys progress to what is now the unchartered territory of round 4 before Southampton ended the dream for another season.

Below is their recent 3rd round record:-

  • 2010/11 – Chelsea 7-0 Ipswich
  • 2011/12 – Hull City 3-1 Ipswich
  • 2012/13 – Aston Villa 2-1 Ipswich
  • 2013/14 – Preston 3 – 2 Ipswich (Replay after 1-1 draw at Portman Road)
  • 2014/15 – Ipswich 0 -1 Southampton (Replay after 1-1 draw at St Mary’s)
  • 2015/16 – Portsmouth 1 – 1 Ipswich (Replay after 2-2 draw at Portman Road)
  • 2016/17 – Lincoln City 1 – 0 Ipswich (Replay after 2-2 draw at Portman Road)
  • 2017/18 – Ipswich 0 – 1 Sheffield United
  • 2018/19 – Accrington 1- 0 Ipswich

A couple of gallant efforts in forcing replays over the years but they somehow have always managed to come up short.

Roy Keane, Paul Jewell and Mick McCarthy have all come up short and current gaffer Paul Lambert didn’t fare any better.

The FA Cup just isn’t a competition that the men from East Anglia look forward to.

Lambert’s men currently sit bottom of the Championship with a substantial points difference to make up, to even give themselves a chance to stay up this season. The 3rd tier is very much on the horizon and a 2nd successive relegation for Lambert after going down with Stoke last season.

A change in owner and a cash injection are key for this club.

Image sourced from; www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football

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Huddersfield Town – Wagner Walks

He gave them something to savour for the rest of their footballing history and now it has come to an agreed end.

David Wagner and the Huddersfield Town board have “mutually agreed” to end their near 3.5yr relationship.

In a surprise announcement on Monday evening, with the build up to Man City vs Wolves very much underway, a statement was released from the John Smiths Stadium.

Perhaps surprisingly – it was stated that a parting of ways was already on the table after the final league game in May.

Town Chairman Dean Hoyle said “After a long discussion we all felt that David staying at the club until the end of the season was best, but we’ve kept discussions open and we all now feel that the time is right to part ways.”

After their Wembley shootout out victory and subsequent PL kick off, Wagner was named Championship Manager of the Year after leading the West Yorkshire side into the top-flight and claimed the Premier League Manager of the Month award in in August 2017 after leading them to a solid 7 point start.

After the promising opening to that particular campaign – it all started to unravel and the stark reality of the task at hand, it appears it became too much for the German.

Somehow though, they managed to drag themselves to a 16th place finish.

The Terriers have just 9 league victories to their name since the end of August…2017.

Back in November they looked to have turned a corner with victories over Fulham and Wolves before a disastrous December and nasty New Year saw them lose 8 on the spin before Wagner’s last game in charge at Cardiff, a 0-0 draw.

Goals have been a serious problem, both for and against.

Whoever comes in has a serious task to even get the Yorkshire club back in contention to remain in the top division, it may make sense for the board to look further into the future and appoint someone capable of gaining promotion once again for after what is sure to be relegation.

One thing that remains after the news. David Wagner will be forever welcome in the town of Huddersfield and will be remembered for years to come after his achievements.

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David Wagner image was sourced from; www.express.co.uk/sport/football

Borussia Dortmund

With the black and yellows 6 points clear at the top of the Bundesliga – with just 1 loss to their name this season, the news this week of the sale of USA international Christian Pulisic to Chelsea may have rocked may a football club. Not Borussia Dortmund.

With the promise of nearly £60m on its way from Stamford Bridge, an agreement was reached to allow their number 22 to hang around on loan until the end of a season which is looking to be a successful one.

After the departure of Pulisic in the summer their squad will still boast the likes of Gotze, Reus, Witsel, Alcacer and of course the exciting talent that is Jadon Sancho.

The particular emergence of the young Englishman has been quicker than expected, his quick feet and ability to take men on has seen him very much in the manager Lucien Favre’s plans, without pre-empting fate its seen that Sancho will prove to be another player that they can cash in on for tremendous profit.

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Borussia Dortmund have seen some of the world’s best footballers come through their doors in the last few years but incredibly the Bundesliga side seem to get stronger.

They rarely stand in the way of their “want away” stars as they can drive a hard bargain and re-invest profit into their future.

Just look at these 5 key outgoings from previous seasons:-

Player Bought For Sold For Profit
Ousmane Dembele €15m €145m €130m
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang €14m €63m €49m
Henrikh Mkhitaryan €13m €42m €29m
Mats Hummels €4m €35m €31m
Ilkay Gundogan €4m €27m €23m
€262m

Frustratingly Lewandowski and Goetze (now returned) walked away on free transfers, a lesson learned it would seem given Pulisic was due to walk away on a free next summer before the transfer to the Premier League was sealed.

Other recent notable sales include Sokratis (Arsenal), Ginter (Monchengladbach) & Bender (Leverkusen).

Along with their Bundesliga cushion they have topped a Champions League group that contained Atletico Madrid and have a last 16 tie with Spurs to look forward to. A tie they’ll see as winnable and progression to the latter stages.

2018 / 19 is looking remarkably promising and this will further impress any targets they choose to pursue with the Chelsea cash for Pulisic, maybe a late bid to snatch you Hudson-Odoi from Bayern and add to their English contingent?

The last 8 seasons have seen Borussia claim 2 league titles, 2 German cups and also seen them victorious in 2 DFL Supercups. Combine this with multiple runners up accolades and they don’t appear to be stopped despite their decisions to allow their prized assets to leave.

Their south bank or “yellow wall” as it’s been nicknamed, is one of the most mesmerising sights in the game when over 24k are making themselves heard.

They simply show true German grit and look to move on as a club whilst gracefully accepting the riches from others around Europe.

Borussia Dortmund are a fine example of a football club.

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Jadon Sancho image sourced from; www.goal.com
Borussia Dortmund Stadium image sourced from; www.youtube.com