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‘The football was incredible’ – Paul Lambert revels in Ipswich display

Southend United v Ipswich Town – Sky Bet League One – Roots Hall
(Image credit: Steven Paston)

Ipswich manager Paul Lambert said there were “so many good things” about his team’s display in their 3-0 Carabao Cup first-round victory against Bristol Rovers.

Two well-taken goals from Freddie Sears either side of skipper Luke Chambers’ header from a corner comfortably saw the Blues into the second round.

In an empty Portman Road due to current Covid-19 restrictions on spectators, the Town boss was delighted with his team’s performance.

“The football was incredible. Incredible movement off the ball, the goals were excellent I thought,” he said.

“The football we played was excellent against a good side, they’ve got good movement, but delighted with how we played.”

Lambert praised 22-year-old debutant Aaron Drinan for his performance as the central striker in a front three.

“He deserved the chance,” he said. “As I’ve said before, show me what you’ve got in pre-season and if I like it then you’ve got a chance. I thought the lad was great.

“But there were so many good things today. So many guys came to the fore and it was an all-round team performance which I thought was very, very good.

“The midfield three’s movement was excellent, going beyond, going short, the link-up play, playing one-touch, two touch football was excellent.

“And I thought Freddie [Sears], [Alan] Judge caused them no end of problems.

“It’s not great without supporters, but hopefully we can get them back as quickly as we can and as safe as we can.”

Bristol Rovers boss Ben Garner felt his side paid the price for not taking their opportunities.

He said: “They took their chances. We made mistakes and got punished and we didn’t take ours. The goals gave them confidence and knocked us a little bit.

“We created four or five really good chances and didn’t take them. You can’t do that. We have to be better in both boxes, we have to be more resolute but we also have to be more clinical at the other end.

“At 1-0, we missed a great chance, which ties the game, at 2-0 down, we miss a great chance which gets us back into the game. Even late on, with chances and opportunities to build pressure on them, we didn’t take them – and that’s the fine lines of football.

“There’s positives in there. I think the first goal knocked us out of our stride a little bit and we need to be tougher mentally than that. We need to commit to the way we’re going to play and keep doing it.

“There were some really good parts to the game and there were some decent individual performances in there but we need to put that all together very quickly and make sure that we’re getting strong performances and good results.”