Judge ‘devastated’ not to leave with the match ball after impressive Burton performance
PUBLISHED: 10:15 16 February 2020
Alan Judge was delighted to play a leading role in Ipswich Town’s victory over Burton Albion but was ‘devastated’ not to leave with the match ball.
The Irishman scored twice and laid on Kayden Jackson's second goal with an excellent assist, but left the bar shaking in the first half as he crashed a one-on-one off the woodwork and also headed wide during a contest he impacted positively throughout.
Judge's brace, which came thanks to a late run into the penalty area to connect with Jackson's cross and a shot which squirmed under goalkeeper Ben Garratt and just about crossed the line, took his season's tally to four but also left the 31-year-old just a little frustrated.
"It was great to score but I'm devastated I didn't get the hat-trick," he said.
"The first one (which hit the bar) I probably hit it a bit much and then the second one, which I did score, I've somehow managed to get it in. For my second one I slipped and the keeper slipped but I'll definitely take it though.
"It's great to be on the score sheet but it's even better when the goals help the team win. That's the main thing."
Judge celebrated his first goal by removing his boot and hurling back onto the playing surface, which the midfielder revealed was a shared joke with manager Paul Lambert.
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"We're contracted to wear the new boots when they come out so I wore them last week in training," he said.
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"The gaffer had a joke with me saying I was never to wear those boots again so I took it off and threw it towards the gaffer as a bit of banter. That kind of thing goes down well because it was just a bit of a laugh. There wasn't any aggression in it.
"He's not getting them off me now. I'll be wearing them until the new colour comes out."
Judge was particularly pleased by the way his side battled back from a goal down after Jamie Murphy's sixth-minute strike silenced Portman Road, with the midfielder admitting it could have been easy for nerves to kick in given his side's poor run heading into the game.
"I think the game had everything really," Judge said.
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"We maybe weren't at our best in the first 20 minutes but we still had chances early on. Keano (Will Keane) had one early then they scored but I should have scored after that (but hit the bar) and Kayden (Jackson) should have scored too.
"But I think the way we reacted was the best thing and it was a professional performance in the end.
"The weather was ok actually (despite Storm Dennis) and our pitch is holding up pretty well all things considered but we have a lot of home games coming up on it.
"This was about getting the win but I thought we played some good football as well."