Hutchings backs Jewell

Paul Jewell
Paul Jewell has endured a tough time at Portman Road. Photo: PA

Ipswich Town have quashed reports that boss Paul Jewell has quit the club.

Whispers spread around Portman Road that Jewell had left following tonight's 2-1 defeat at home to Derby.

However, the Blues have denied that rumour and say he remains in charge for now.

Assistant boss Chris Hutchings was sent up to face the media rather than Jewell, who said he was contemplating his future after Saturday's 2-1 defeat at Hull.

"Paul is manager of the football club at this moment in time," said Hutchings.

"He's in the office watching the DVD.

"He wears his heart on his sleeve and he's very disappointed because we've conceded another goal late on, as we have on four or five occasions now.

"When that happens it hurts.

"Now we've got to come out fighting for another game on Saturday."

When asked if he and Jewell would be in charge for this weekend's home match against Sheffield Wednesday, Hutchings added: "You'll have to ask (owner) Marcus (Evans).

"We're bottom of the league but we're going about our jobs, unless we're told otherwise."

Town slid to the foot of the table after stretching their winless run to 11 games.

DJ Campbell prodded them into a first-half lead but Theo Robinson poached an equaliser, after a blunder by goalkeeper Stephen Henderson, and Nathan Tyson grabbed a late winner for the Rams.

The winning goal sparked jeers of derision from the home fans, who also chanted "you're getting sacked in the morning" at a beleaguered Jewell.

Town took the lead thanks to another fortuitous goal for Campbell. Lee Martin's hooked pass fell kindly for the striker and as he shot, the ball ricocheted in off defender James O'Connor.

It was no more than the hosts deserved after seizing the initiative early on but rather than double their lead, they found themselves pegged back after 40 minutes.

Danny Higginbotham's poor clearance only went as far as Conor Sammon and when his low drive was fumbled by Henderson, Robinson pounced on the loose ball to gobble up his third goal in five games.

Town then suffered more late heartache in the closing seconds when substitute Tyson steered the ball home from five yards, after a cross from Sammon.

Derby boss Nigel Clough said: "It was deserved, on the balance of play, and some of the stuff we played in the second half was exceptionally good.

"You're always worried when you have so much of the game and it's still 1-1. It only takes one little mistake or set-play and you end up losing 2-1.

"But I think we deserved it and we're five games unbeaten now, which makes me delighted."

Clough reserved special praise for Sammon and midfielder Will Hughes.

"Conor Sammon couldn't have done anything more, other than score a goal," he said. "It was the only thing missing from his performance.

"He was absolutely superb. He won his headers, held the ball up, made two goals and terrorised the centre-halves. He was outstanding.

"Strikers want goals, of course, but it's also about good performances and making goals, which he did tonight.

"His all-round game was brilliant and I'm as delighted for him as anyone.

"Little Will Hughes coped superbly, given the two he was up against today, Nigel Reo-Coker and Richie Wellens.

"I can't remember him giving the ball away - either him or Craig Bryson."