Championship: Ipswich worth wager as Boro find Suffolk trip tough
Jamie Clark, Sports Editor | December 3, 2015
Ipswich Town v Middlesbrough
- Friday, December 4th
- Kick-off: 19:45 GMT
- Portman Road, Ipswich
- Live on Sky Sports 1
Boro battle musical McCarthy’ men
Middlesbrough do not travel well to Suffolk, as they last won at Ipswich Town way back in 1993. Their latest encounter should be a case of sing when you’re winning for Tractor Boys boss Mick McCarthy.
The Republic of Ireland centre back and manager recorded a song in 1991, which has recently come to light and gone viral. While McCarthy doesn’t exactly have the voice of an angel, his Ipswich outfit have been devilishly difficult for Boro to handle on the road.
Coral make the Tractor Boys a nifty 9/5 to mete out another defeat of the Teesside team, who aren’t nearly long enough at 31/20 to end their awful run at Portman Road, despite the incentive of victory taking them top. A draw is the best Aitor Karanka and Middlesbrough can hope for at 11/5 an price.
Tractor Boys target men to pose problems
Boro boast the third-best Championship defence with just a dozen goals conceded, and such a miserly rearguard provides continuity with last term. That stat can be discarded, however, as Ipswich have been so awesome on their own patch against the Riverside raiders.
Rejuvenated Ireland international frontman Daryl Murphy has put his early season struggles behind him, and now has six in his last three as well as scoring home and away when paired with Karanka’s club last term.
Murphy is a superb 7/4 anytime scorer chance, and there is also value in backing compatriot midfielder Jonathan Douglas at an awesome 11/2 in the same market. Don’t discount Tractor Boys striking alternative Brett Pitman, with three in as many matches against Middlesbrough, as he’s a fine 15/8 wager here.
Karanka needs more from forwards
Rather worryingly for the visitors, a striker last scored in October, and this is something that will have to change if Boro want to end their wait for a win in Suffolk. Don’t hold your breath punters.
Hedging your bets may be the way to go with Christian Stuani (7/4 anytime), Albert Adomah (who has scored in this fixture before, so represents real value at 14/5) and Stewart Downing (9/4) all contenders for Karanka.
Ipswich could even be worth backing to win to nil at 7/2, as Middlesbrough have failed to score in two of their last three at Mick’s men.
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