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Thursday, 13 February, 2003, 00:46 GMT
Ipswich 3-2 Sheff Utd
Ipswich Town 3-2 Sheffield United

Ten-man Ipswich staged a superb fightback to beat high-flying Sheffield United after looking dead and buried at Portman Road.

Goals from Peter Ndlovu in first-half stoppage-time and Dean Windass shortly after the restart looked to have set the Blades on the way to victory.

But two goals from Darren Bent sandwiching another by Darren Ambrose contrived an amazing win.

Ipswich had recovered from three down in an epic FA Cup tie at Bramall Lane last month before losing, but this time their never-say-die attitude paid off.

And their victory was all the more creditable for being achieved after the 20th-minute sending-off of leading scorer Pablo Counago for violent conduct in an off-the-ball clash with Michael Brown.

United punished the 10 men with a goal from Ndlovu as the first half drew to a close, the winger turning past Thomas Gaardsoe before striking a good finish.

Ipswich sent on former Sheffield United striker Marcus Bent in an attempt to spice up their attack in the second half, but within five minutes they looked down and out.

Veteran striker Dean Windass burst through on a counter-attack to give the visitors a two-goal lead with a shot from the edge of the box.

But Ipswich, with fired-up Marcus Bent causing all sorts of problems, refused to lie down.

Tommy Miller had already lobbed a shot on to the bar when Darren Bent scored his 12th goal of the season, volleying in Jermaine Wright's pass after 57 minutes.

With United suddenly looking jittery, Joe Royle's men pressed for the equaliser and when it came, it was thoroughly deserved.

Darren Bent swung over a 78th-minute cross from the right and Ambrose headed the ball past Paddy Kenny.

The winner came after 88 minutes when Ambrose returned the compliment, crossing from the left for Darren Bent to score with a far-post header.


Ipswich: Marshall, Wilnis, Gaardsoe, Hreidarsson, Makin, Holland, Magilton, Miller, Counago, D Bent, Ambrose. Subs: Pullen, Armstrong, Wright, M Bent, Richards.

Sheff Utd: Kenny, Jagielka, Murphy, Page, Quinn, Ndlovu, Brown, McCall, Tonge, Windass, Kabba. Subs: Peschisolido, Allison, Mooney, Edghill, Kozluk.

Referee: R Beeby (Northamptonshire)

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Sheff Utd manager Neil Warnock
"We took our foot off the pedal at 2-0"

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