McCarthy Delighted With Smith and Chambers Pairing
Friday, 30th Nov 2012 06:05
Boss Mick McCarthy was delighted with centre-halves Tommy Smith and Luke Chambers during Tuesday’s 3-1 home victory over Nottingham Forest and says it’s important that players forge such partnerships all over the pitch.
McCarthy, a central defender himself during his playing days, had particular praise for Smith: “I like him as a defender.
“People asked ‘Why didn’t you play him in [the Leicester] game?’. Well, there was only one game I left him out and that was when he came back from China, which I thought was the right thing to do.
“He’s played well. I’ve been really pleased with him. I thought he and Chambo were excellent on Tuesday.
“Certainly for the first 30 minutes when we dominated the game, they never gave those lads a sniff. I thought they were great.”
He says players need to develop relationships with those around them on the pitch: “It’s important. If you’re a right-back, you like to have a good relationship with the right winger because it’s you that’s going to be giving him the ball most of the time.
“And centre forwards need to be able to play together. I’ve been here a month, I didn’t walk in and know everybody or how they all played. Hopefully, we’re starting to see a settling down and a settled side.”
He says establishing a core of a side is key, starting with the goalkeeper: “Everybody tries to get a good spine in the team, as they describe it. Keeper, centre-backs, midfield, centre forward, right through the centre, and you have to have that. If you haven’t got them then you can be vulnerable.
“Hendo having conceded the goals, and having been pretty bloody annoyed about it as well at Leicester, I think he’s had two terrific games.”
McCarthy has also been impressed Guirane N’Daw in the centre of midfield: “A great finish his, wasn’t it? He has been excellent Guirane N’Daw and through playing he’s just got fitter and sharper.
“He does all the tackling and working, but some of his passing the other night was excellent. I thought he really had an excellent game and I’m delighted with him.”
While competition for places is increasing, McCarthy says he’s not overwhelmed with alternative options at the present time: “If you look at the squad up on the board, it’s not easy to change too many around because there aren’t too many options really.
"The ones that play as well as they did on Tuesday night, they get the chance to start.”
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