It seems ridiculous to be talking about must win games and six pointers just over a month into the season, and so it is. But even with 120 points still left to play for, both Ipswich and Charlton will be desperate to secure a vital three points to move away from the relegation zone. Ipswich, 23rd on 5 points, have won one game all season, form that has caused fans to question the quality of both manager Paul Jewell and his players. Newly promoted Charlton have had their fans question Chris Powell’s tactics and team selection, a fact that was justified in Tuesday night’s defeat to Derby where the introduction of Ricardo Fuller and Salim Kerkar changed the game. Even at such an early stage, playing catch up to the vast majority of other teams is physically and mentally difficult for any team. The winner of this match will go a long way to avoiding that situation.
Charlton Team News
Powell began to tinker with his team on Tuesday, with the injured Rhoys Wiggins replaced with Lawrie Wilson and Danny Green coming in on the right to add true width. It was the decision to play Wilson at left back ahead of Cedric Evina that angered most fans, with the general consensus being the 20 year old former Arsenal academy player deserved his chance. Following Wilson’s indifferent display, question marks remain over who will start at Ipswich. There are no doubts however over Green’s starting place. Following an exceptional display at Derby that saw him score a goal of the season contender and create a goal for Yann Kermorgant, Powell confirmed he would be starting on Saturday. Powell has also hinted at Ricardo Fuller making his first start, and the Jamaican will start up to with Kermorgant. The only other change from the team that faced Derby may be a full league debut for Salim Kerkar replacing Danny Hollands, who has looked lost at times in The Championship, but Powell is unlikely to make so many changes.
Ipswich Team News
With goals being a problem for Ipswich, the news that first choice front pair Michael Chopra and Paul Taylor are doubts is disastrous for the Suffolk club. Jason Scotland and Jay Emmanual-Thomas will be the likely stand ins if needed, whilst Daryl Murphy will also be pushing to start, but neither of the trio have a goal to their name this season. The Tractor Boys’ back four has also been a problem this season, with 13 goals conceded, but with a lack of options, it’s likely to remain unchanged. Former Charlton loanee Lee Martin is expected to start against his old club.
Prediction: Ipswich 1-2 Charlton
Three points. No matter how they come, three points must be collected by The Addicks come 5pm.