On Tuesday night Paul Jewell's Ipswich travel to Vicarage Road to face Gianfranco Zola's Watford in the second game of the NPower Championship and also incidently the first home game of the season. Watford come into the game after a very good result away to bogey side Crystal Palace, whereas Ipswich come into the game with a draw with recently relegated and promotion challenging Blackburn Rovers. Watford in recent years have become the bogey side for Ipswich with the Tractor Boys not beating the Hornets in nearly a decade.
Watford kicked off the season with an impressive 3-2 win at Crystal Palace despite losing 2-1 until the last few minutes. Owen Garvan scored both Palace goals, a penalty due to an upending challenge by Eustace in the box, and a run through the Watford defence before cooly slotting into the back of the net. Between these two goals Martin Taylor managed to score after Speroni failed to handle an innocuous shot from Sean Murray. In the final five minutes of the game Watford finally found the second equaliser from a long range shot from Almen Abdi, which Speroni should have saved. And in the final minute Watford found a cracking winner from young striker Matej Vydra who was brought on for John Eustace earlier in the game. The final goal sent the travelling fans mental which was increased with Matej Vydra celebrating with the crowd. What impressed the travelling fans the most was the way in which Watford controlled the vast majority of the game and attacked very well, which was a far cry from the Wycombe game a week earlier.
Zola looks to still be without long term absentee Steven McGinn who is still recovering from a knee injury suffered 18 months ago. It is not yet known whether Fitz Hall or Daniel Pudil will be available for the game on Tuesday, with Carl Dickinson looking to retain the left back position. The midfield is expected to be the same with Johnathon Hogg and Johnathon Eustace playing the defensive midfield role and Almen Abdi playing the playmaker. Conor Smith is also in contention to play the playmaker role after impressing at Palace when he was bought on. Lloyd Doyley and Lee Hodson are expected to battle it out for the right back position with Doyley impressing against Palace. Matej Vydra has staked a claim to start against Ipswich after a very impressive display against Palace encapsulated by a very good goal. Sean Murray as always is one of the first name's down on the team sheet and should start against Ipswich. It is unlikely the Geijo will play as he is regaining match fitness after joining the club earlier this month therefore Joe Garner and Chris Iwelumo are vying for the starting place. Hopefully Steve Leo Beleck will be on the bench or close to starting after regaining match fitness.
Ipswich come into the game after a 1-1 draw with Blackburn Rovers, with Jason Lowe scoring a late own goal to give Ipswich the point. Paul Jewell has brought in several players in the close season including Scott Loach from Watford for a minimal fee. Jewell has also brought in Elliot Hewitt, Luke Chambers and Massimo Luongo whilst letting key players such as captain Grant Leadbitter go. Ipswich contain a couple of ex Hornets, namely Michael Chopra and Nathan Ellington. Ipswich team news and opposition view to follow. Looking at the Ipswich fan site (www.twtd.co.uk
) the fans seem confident that they will get a win on Tuesday, hopefully Zola doesn't under estimate any opposition in this league.
Danger man for Ipswich will be ex Arsenal trainee Jay Emannuel-Thomas who is dubbed JET by Ipswich fans. Last time we played Ipswich at home he gave Dickinson the run around so hopefully Dicko has learnt and will keep him quiet. If not he will cause us problems.
Subs: Bond, Hodson, Thompson, Smith, Vydra, Iwelumo, Forsyth.
Subs: Lee-Barrett, Delany, Ainsley, Stevenson, Drury, Scotland, Murray
Predicted Score: 3-1 to the Hornets. If we play like we did at Palace I can see the win, however if we play poorly Ipswich can beat us.
Don't forget to put a bet on at the Vbookie.
Come on you 'Orns!!