12th Dec, 2019

Late O'Hare strike in FA Cup draw means Coventry City face Ipswich three times in nine days

Les Reid 2nd Dec, 2019

FAMILIAR themes this season of a late goal and missed chances meant Coventry drew 1-1 to high-flying Ipswich in the FA Cup to ensure their name was in the third-round hat.

Substitute Callum O’Hare’s fine low strike from outside the box deep into stoppage time earned a deserved draw after the home side created more chances, despite Ipswich often dominating possession.

The Tractor Boys had taken the lead with virtually their first clear chance of the game on 51 minutes after another costly error by the otherwise commanding central defender Kyle McFadzean.

He had played a poor cross-field ball, which was intercepted on the left, before he was turned and beaten to the byline in the box and Keane smartly converted the cross.

Coventry had dominated and created clear chances for the first 20 minutes, when the creative midfielder Westbrooke combined well several times with Max Biamou – playing alone upfront until Bakayoko was brought on to revert to a 3-5-2 formation in the second half.

Biamou had two good chances to score when he hit the target and did well enough but his shots were stopped.

After 20 minutes, Ipswich began to show what they could do after a lacklustre start by the side in second place in League One.

They began to dominate possession in midfield where they were tenacious and energetic, their pressing game often pinning back City and their wing-backs, with Dabo getting forward less than in recent games.

That pattern continued until those substitutions midway through the second half and City, while not reaching their levels of late in an often turgid game, created plenty more chances to score.

Kelly had a late curling shot from outside the box saved well and Bakayoko fired a close-range header straight at the keeper.

The draw means Coventry will face Ipswich three times in nine days, with the League home clash on Saturday and the replay at Portman Road next Tuesday.

City boss Mark Robins said: “The character they showed again to comeback was really good. They forced us to change the way we play, their counter pressing was as good as anything as well, above the level.

“What we needed was work-rate and people to work hard to try and get off the back of them a little bit and Callum O’Hare’s introduction made sure we were able to do that and he made the difference and his finish was a stunning finish.

“The fact that we created a lot of chances was something else. We’ve opened them up at times, created a really good number of chances and been on the front foot, when we could do, against a really good side and that’s pleasing.

“We have to be braver and not worry about the opponent because the quality is there. It’s just doing it against the top teams and trying to turn those draws into wins.”

“We’ve had some really good opportunities to score and just not taken them which is frustrating.”

Of Ipswich, he said: “They’ve played more football today than they’ve played this season because they’re different.

“We knew that things would change, Ipswich have a huge squad with talented players. They’re a side that has bigger resources than most clubs in the division.

“They are able to utilise that squad they left a number of big players out and that’s the difference.

“The young payers that came in were talented, Flynn Downes in particular I thought was outstanding, I haven’t seen many better, so you know you’re up against it.”

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