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Conor Chaplin’s 50th Ipswich Town goal sees promotion-chasing Blues to 2-1 victory at Swansea City





Conor Chaplin’s 50th Ipswich Town goal was enough to move the Blues back to within three points of the Sky Bet Championship automatic promotion places following a hard-fought 2-1 victory over Swansea City at the Swansea.com Stadium.

Chaplin became the 24th player to reach a half-century in Ipswich colours after his eventual winner came after Jerry Yates had cancelled out Nathan Broadhead’s third goal in as many games to give the Blues an early lead.

Town defended resolutely in a dogged second half to complete a first ever league double over the Swans and make it six points in three days on the road.

Conor Chaplin celebrated his 50th Ipswich Town goal as the Blues won 2-1 at Swansea City Picture: Barry Goodwin
Conor Chaplin celebrated his 50th Ipswich Town goal as the Blues won 2-1 at Swansea City Picture: Barry Goodwin

Town boss Kieran McKenna’s only change from the midweek victory over Millwall was to replace Wes Burns with Chaplin, which saw Omari Hutchinson move to the right.

Axel Tuanzebe dropped out of the match-day squad, with George Edmundson returning in his place.

Meanwhile, Swansea head coach Luke Williams made four changes from the team that were comfortably beaten by Leeds United on Tuesday, with Kyle Naughton, Joe Allen, Ollie Cooper and Jerry Yates coming into the side.

Nathan Broadhead opened the scoring in south Wales to take his season tally into double figures Picture: Barry Goodwin
Nathan Broadhead opened the scoring in south Wales to take his season tally into double figures Picture: Barry Goodwin

Jay Fulton, former Norwich City man Przemyslaw Placheta and Liam Cullen dropped out of the side, along with Bashir Humphreys who failed a late fitness test.

After a slow opening 10 minutes, the Blues created the first real opening of the game, when Leif Davis saw a powerful goal-bound effort tipped over by Swans goalkeeper Carl Rushworth from Broadhead’s lay-off.

The resultant corner saw Town go close again. After being taken short, Cameron Burgess met Sam Morsy’s cross and headed wide, but the Blues only needed to wait another minute before taking the lead.

It came through man-of-the-moment Broadhead as the Swans’ recent habit of conceding early was punished once more. Hutchinson poked the Wales international through after winning a 50/50, and Town’s top scorer produced a subtle dink beyond Rushworth to mark his 50th Championship appearance with a first club goal on Welsh soil.

Conor Chaplin scored what proved to be the winner for Ipswich Town away at Swansea Picture: Barry Goodwin
Conor Chaplin scored what proved to be the winner for Ipswich Town away at Swansea Picture: Barry Goodwin

Town sought after a second, Kieffer Moore heading wide from a corner before firing at Rushworth after being fed through by Chaplin.

Davis was booked for a foul on Brazilian winger Ronald on the touchline, and Swansea equalised from the resulting free-kick.

Ben Cabango rose highest in the penalty area to find Yates at the back post, who scored from close range to level the score on the half hour mark.

But five minutes later, the Blues went back in front in trademark style. After being sent down the left, Davis cut the ball back for Chaplin to reach his landmark total and join Broadhead on double figures for the season.

Moore attempted to attack a dangerous Davis cross that was well defended, before the whistle blew to bring the first half to a close.

The second period started in a similar way to how the first ended, Chaplin pulling a tame effort wide before Rushworth comfortably dealt with Massimo Luongo’s dipping effort.

Yates then went close to equalising again in similar fashion to his first. The Swans striker somehow failed to meet the ball at the back post after Matt Grimes met Ronald’s delivery from the right.

Minutes later, Kyle Naughton became the first home player into the book for a late lunge on Broadhead, who soon created a huge opening for fellow Welshman Moore just after the hour mark.

After playing the Bournemouth loanee through on goal, a combination of Rushworth and the crossbar denied the Blues striker from his fourth goal in as many matches.

Town began to face somewhat of an aerial bombardment into their box before McKenna made a triple change, replacing Hutchinson and goalscorers Broadhead and Chaplin for Burns, Jeremy Sarmiento and Marcus Harness.

As the game entered the final 20 minutes, Swansea searched for a leveller. Cullen’s strike from the edge of the box took a fortunate clip off Burgess which took the sting out of the effort, then Naughton’s dangerous cross was headed over by Mykola Kukharevych.

Sarmiento saw a low shot held by Rushworth, but the hosts came back at the Blues when Cullen headed straight at Vaclav Hladky.

Ali Al-Hamadi, who was previously in the Swans youth set-up, replaced Moore for the final 10 minutes and was immediately into the thick of things, narrowly heading wide from Burns’ cross.

McKenna’s final roll of the dice was to replace Luongo with Lewis Travis before Hladky produced the save of the match to keep the Blues in front.

The Czech stopper adjusted expertly to tip over Harry Darling’s effort that took a heavy deflection off Harry Clarke.

Burns slammed the ball against the woodwork on the break as Town saw out the remainder of three added minutes to claim back-to-back victories on the road and condemn the struggling Swans to a sixth defeat in seven.

The Blues are next in action on Tuesday, as they make a return to Portman Road to take on the league’s bottom side Rotherham United (7.45pm).

Swansea City (4-2-3-1): Rushworth; Tymon, Wood, Cabango, Naughton (Darling 85); Grimes (c), Allen (Patino 63); Patterson, Cooper (Kukharevych 63), Ronald (Placheta 69); Yates (Cullen 63). Subs: Fisher, Fulton, Sagoe Jr, Lissah.

Booked:Naughton.

Ipswich Town (4-2-3-1): Hladky; Davis, Burgess, Woolfenden, Clarke; Luongo (Travis 83), Morsy (c); Broadhead (Sarmiento 67), Chaplin (Harness 67), Hutchinson (Burns 67); Moore (Al-Hamadi 79). Subs: Walton, Edmundson, Jackson, Humphreys.

Booked: Davis.

Referee: John Busby (Oxfordshire).

Attendance: 16,646.

SuffolkNews Man of the Match: Cameron Burgess.Town’s Australian wall was immense throughout the 90 minutes, particularly in the second half when he dealt with wave after wave of Swansea balls into the box from various angles. A commanding performance.