Town end Cherries' long unbeaten run
- Harry Wager
AFC Bournemouth development squad’s 12-match unbeaten run came to an end as ruthless Ipswich Town triumphed 3-1 at Vitality Stadium on Tuesday.
The Cherries were bidding to go top of the Professional Development League Group South table after winning seven and drawing one of their previous eight games.
But after second-half goals from Osman Foyo and Matty Roberts had added to Dan O’Connor’s first-half opener, Alan Connell’s team were left with a mountain to climb.
And although Kian Tydeman came off the bench to reduce the arrears with his third goal of the season 11 minutes from time, it proved to be just a consolation.
The teams both fashioned presentable chances inside the opening four minutes, Cam Plain denying Ipswich and Dan Adu-Adjei firing wide.
Plain pulled off a stunning one-handed save to keep out Ash Boatswain’s downward header after the striker had been picked out by a Matty Roberts cross.
And as play quickly switched to the opposite end, Adu-Adjei, sent clear by Emi Marcondes’s slide-rule pass, poked his shot narrowly past the upright.
Michael Dacosta Gonzalez had supporters on the edge of their seats as he danced across the top of the 18-yard box, the winger rifling his shot over the crossbar.
A timely, last-ditch tackle by Cherries skipper Ben Greenwood on Leon Ayinde as he prepared to pull the trigger from close range drew warm applause from the Vitality Stadium crowd.
However, after the resultant corner taken by Roberts had eventually fallen to O’Connor, he looped a header past Plain to give the visitors the lead in the 13th minute.
As the Cherries went in search of an equaliser, Dom Sadi tried his luck from distance, only to see Ipswich goalkeeper Henry Gray saved comfortably.
Plain made another fine stop after Roberts had taken aim with a thunderous drive, the goalkeeper diving full length and turning it past the post with a firm right hand.
Ben Winterburn cleared his lines as Ayinde looked to fasten on to Boatswain’s header before Dacosta Gonzalez blocked Osman Foyo’s fierce drive.
Good work by Adu-Adjei created an opening for Dacosta Gonzalez but his effort from the edge of the box flew narrowly wide of the woodwork.
Ipswich doubled their lead five minutes after the break when Foyo lifted his shot over the advancing Plain having dispossessed Balraj Landa in the build-up.
Sadi clipped an effort wide of the target after linking with Jack Wadham before Adu-Adjei did likewise after the ball had ricocheted into his path.
The Cherries fell further behind when Roberts made it 3-0 after 62 minutes, the midfielder curling a 25-yarder past the despairing dive of Plain.
Dacosta Gonzalez, teed up by Kian Tydeman’s flick, saw his rasping drive beaten away by Gray before the winger’s 25-yard piledriver just cleared the crossbar following a corner.
The Cherries reduced the deficit when substitute Tydeman finished emphatically after Tonks’s cross had eventually fallen for him ten yards out.
Although the Cherries piled on the pressure in the closing stages –with Adu-Adjei lifting Euan Pollock's centre over the crossbar and Jack Wadham seeing a stinging drive parried – they were unable to make further inroads.
Adu-Adjei looked destined to make it 3-2 deep into nine minutes of stoppage time, only to see his delicate lob clip the crossbar.
The Cherries will be hoping to qualify for the last 16 of the Premier League Cup when they host Charlton Athletic at Wimborne Town's New Cuthbury on Sunday (1pm kick-off). Entry is free.
AFC Bournemouth: Plain, Tonks, Boutin, Wadham, Winterburn, Greenwood, Marcondes (Pollock, 74), Sadi, Adu-Adjei, Dacosta Gonzalez, Landa (Tydeman, 65). Unused subs: Brown, Okoh, Allan (g/k).
Ipswich Town: Gray, Jambang (Lavin, 90), O’Connor, Agbaje, Baggott, Carr, Roberts, Stepien-Iwumene, Boatswain (Moodie, 74), Foyo, Ayinde (Amadou, 72). Unused sub: Binns (g/k).
Booked: Ayinde, Jambang.
Referee: Harry Wager.