The first competitive game is always difficult, players are still trying to reach full fitness and getting to know new team mates.
Today turned out to be tougher than anyone anticipated.
Ipswich totally dominated an dictated the pace of the game from start to finish. The passing was slick and accurate and they adopted a shoot on sight policy.
But for goalkeeper Danny Coyne’s heroics, we could have lost the game by a greater margin.
I said before the game that I was not convinced about Bates and Hoyte as full backs.
Hoyte on the right was poor and was eventually replaced.
Bates worked hard, but came inside on every opportunity, neglecting the left side.
On the subject of the left, I find it astonishing that Strachan opted to start with two right footed players on the left, with Flood in front of Bates, when you have got three naturally left footed players on the bench in Grounds, Arca and Kink.
I was looking forward to seeing Thomson, Boyd and Bailey in a Boro shirt, all three on the day disappointed.
I have always said that the game of football is a simple game, played with simple people, complicated by fools.
With the score 2-1 Gordon Strachan decided to take off the ineffective Justin Hoyte in the 59 min, on came Tarmo Kink who went to left wing, Arca moved to left back and Bates ended up at right back.
If the tactical changes were meant to give us a spark, they failed miserably.
The most worrying thing I witnessed, was a distinct lack of pace between midfield and attack.
We seemed to amble forward, Ipswich Town looked explosive.
Only one effort on target, which produced the goal scored by McDonald is simply not good enough.
We got what we deserved.