Murphy's poor form highlights Ipswich's frailties

Ipswich Town

The fortunes of Daryl Murphy and Ipswich Town as a team are currently one and the same.

Daryl Murphy: By The Numbers: Last Four Games: 20150305

The Irishman has now gone four goals without a game, his joint longest spell since the start of the season, with his penalty miss at Leeds summing up his current form.

Usually you would expect a player that sits proudly at the top of the Championship’s goal scoring table to lash a penalty home with aplomb, instead his shot lacked conviction and was tipped onto the post.

It’s important to note that Ipswich have only won five of the 17 games the 31-year-old hasn’t scored in this season, showing just how important his goals are.

And now that he is enduring a baron spell other frailties in the Town team are starting to become more prominent. The usual long-ball game isn’t working because it needs Murphy to be successful.

This means the ball generally comes straight back at the defense who more often than not play it back to Bartosz Bialkowski, who could see himself dropped for the next game against Brentford, for the cycle to repeat.

While individual errors are becoming more prominent at Ipswich, they haven’t started to occur over night. Bartosz Bialkowski has looked out of sorts for a few games, making subtle mistakes and then more obvious ones against Birmingham and Leeds.

Tommy Smith had his own moment to forget against Fulham but was able to move on due to Murphy already having scored twice.

So the little – and sometimes more major errors – have always been there but have been easy to ignore because they happened during a win when Murphy has been scoring.

Mick McCarthy now needs one of his strikers to fill the void much in the same way as Murphy did last season when David McGoldrick got injured. Freddie Sears looks the most likely candidate having scored two against Birmingham and one against Leeds from the bench.

Whether the solution is for another striker to step up or for Murphy to recapture his form, Ipswich need to turn around quickly for their next two vital games against Brentford and Middlesbrough or they could find themselves out of the promotion race altogether.

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