Match Preview: Ipswich v Bolton Wanderers

Jordan Mansfield

Chris takes a look at Wanderers' next opponents - a familar foe

Saturday brings about another tough fixture for Bolton Wanderers in the shape of Mick McCarthy's Ipswich Town.

It will be the 30th meeting of the two sides in a fixture which dates back to 1961. Ipswich lead the way to date with 15 wins to Bolton's 13, with Wyn Davies and Francis Lee top-scoring for Wanderers with five goals apiece.

The 2013-14 season is Ipswich Town's twelfth consecutive season in the Championship, and the second under the command of former Wolves manager McCarthy.

His first season at the club saw the Yorkshireman drag his charges to a respectable 14th place, though they have improved significantly this time round, lying in seventh place with 40 points from their 28 games, 12 in front of Bolton.

Ipswich's top scorer is former Nottingham Forest midfielder David McGoldrick with 11 goals, with former Celtic striker Daryl Murphy in second place with eight.

They began the season poorly, with just one win in their opening five games, before winning three out of four in September.

The two clubs met at the Reebok in October, where they played out a dour 1-1 draw in front of 15,222 bored spectators. Medo Kamara scored a 65th minute free kick for Wanderers, which was cancelled out ten minutes later by McGoldrick.

Since then, whilst Wanderers' fortunes have dipped, Ipswich have been a steady presence in the top ten. They have counted wins over Reading, Blackburn Rovers and Blackpool in recent weeks.

Since the New Year, Bolton have been in pretty disastrous form.

After scraping a 2-2 draw at home Middlesbrough courtest of a last minute equaliser from the since-sold David Ngog, Wanderers were then were thoroughly beaten 7-1 by Reading at the Madejski Stadium.

Bolton lost for the third time running in all competitions, going down 2-1 to QPR at Loftus Road on Tuesday night despite captain Jay Spearing scoring his first of the season via a deflection in the last ten minutes.

Last Five Meetings

06.04.2002 - Bolton Wanderers 4 v 1 Ipswich Town (Fredi Bobic x3, Youri Djorkaeff)

08.01.2005 - Ipswich Town 1 v 3 Bolton Wanderers (Stelios, Henrik Pedersen x2)

01.12.2012 - Bolton Wanderers 1 v 2 Ipswich Town (Mark Davies)

16.03.2012 - Ipswich Town 1 v 0 Bolton Wanderers

27.10.2013 - Bolton Wanderers 1 v 1 Ipswich Town (Medo Kamara)

Prediction

An incredibly tough ask for an out-of-form and struggling Bolton Wanderers. Manager Dougie Freedman has a massive task on his hands - not only in arresting our drop down the division, but in turning around fan opinion which is well and truly against him at this time.

I'd love a point, but think we're going to struggle.

I'll have to go with a home win.

Ipswich Town 2 v 0 Bolton Wanderers

History (with thanks to Nigel Sheppard's excellent BWFC stats site)

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