McCarthy: Good Genes Produce Good Players
Saturday, 16th Apr 2016 18:29
“Good genes produce good players,” said Town boss Mick McCarthy after Andre Dozzell followed in father Jason’s footsteps and scored on his debut aged 16 as the Blues drew 1-1 at Sheffield Wednesday.
“He’s a good player, isn’t he?” McCarthy said. “I guess good genes produce good players, and that’s what’s happened.
“He’s a good player. I thought he deserved his opportunity. I always said that [he would] if we got to the end of the season and it looked like drifting away from us.
“It wasn’t working, what I did in the first half and wanted that bit more creativity, and thankfully it worked.”
He added: “He’s 16 still, they were talking to him when he was 14. I was never going to play him when he was 14.
“He goes in the gym of a morning with Lids [fitness coach Andy Liddell] now and does a weights programme and has built himself up and he’s a lot bigger and stronger and able to cope with it.
“How he scored with a header when he missed two yesterday morning in the old versus young game is unbelievable. He gets in the box and he’s a really talented young fella.”
Dozzell is still a first-year scholar but has agreed a two-year pro deal with the Blues, which will be formalised when he turns 17 on May 2nd.
He has already been linked with plenty of Premier League clubs, Liverpool, Spurs, Arsenal and West Ham amongst them, but McCarthy has no concerns about him going elsewhere.
“I’m not in here to talk about his contract, he’s a very good player,” the Blues boss said when asked about the youngster’s contractual situation.
“They’ve all asked me before, he’s attracting interest from everywhere else, but you wouldn’t be surprised.
“But I think he’ll want to play in our first team, he certainly does and that’s what his dad thinks as well.
“We’ve no interest, I’ve no interest [in letting him go], I might as well pack it up if I lose players of that quality.
“And to be fair, [owner] Marcus [Evans] has kept the players that have [attracted interest], Didzy, Daryl Murphy and I think as far back as Connor Wickham when they first showed interest they kept him and ended up selling him for a lot of money. I’ve no worries about that. I’m happy in my own skin about that one.”
Looking back, he can recall examples of players who would have been better off not moving to big clubs early in their careers.
“I can always and look back at times in my career as a manager,” he continued. “I remember being the manager at Millwall and Mark Kennedy, who is now the U21s coach with Ipswich, got in my first team and Liverpool signed him.
“He made his debut, I think he hit the cross-bar from about 30 yards, he didn’t score and he didn’t play again for another 12 months or something and ended up away from Liverpool.
“He had a good career, but it wasn’t with Liverpool because he was beneath the standard of what they wanted.
“I think playing in somebody’s first team is far better than driving a nice car, having a nice watch and having a nice house because you’ll get that eventually anyway. Just take your time, cool your heels and make sure you do it first with us.”
He agreed that Dozzell’s goalscoring debut was a big boost to Town supporters with the season now effectively at an end.
“It is [nice for fans to see a homegrown player come through] and it was great to have Didzy back, another really good quality player, who showed his ability today,” McCarthy said.
“And Bish will be playing on Monday at Bramall Lane [with the U21s], players that we’ve got of real quality that haven’t been available to us.
“One, because he’s too young and he’s not ready for it yet, he is now getting there, and two, that have been injured all season. It’s nice to have them back, it’s nice to have good players in the team.”
Reflecting on the game, the Town manager said: “It is a good point, but doesn’t do us a great deal of good except that it gives us a bit of comfort that we’ve got a squad of lads that really want to scrap and fight and play and we got something out of a game which could have drifted away from us.”
At the end McCarthy had to calm down Brett Pitman with the striker angry with Jonas Knudsen for shooting well wide when he ought to have passed to the frontman
“I understand him being angry at it because we may well have scored the winner but for me that anger can only go so far,” he said.
“I’ve just said to him that I have to love them all for what they give me, warts and all whether it’s good, bad or indifferent and I think you have to be the same with your team-mates.
“There’s no point having a scrap about it, that’s not going to help anybody. What will help is if the next time he gets in that position he sees him and we score a winner and we improve because of it. But we don’t implode or fall out because I let everybody have a bloody scrap about it.
“We all make mistakes. If I didn’t make mistakes, I might be managing Real Madrid or Barcelona or Manchester United, but I’m not that good.
“Maybe that’s because we’re not that good and that’s the difference between us in the top six and getting promoted, it’s just the way it is unfortunately.”
He continued: “Am I disappointed [at not making the play-offs]? I’m always disappointed when we don’t meet my expectations, me personally, and I thought that we could have been a top six team.
“We’ve all suffered injuries and suspensions, but for us to lose Murph for as long as we did and Ryan Fraser and Didzy and Teddy Bishop has really affected us, like it affects all the teams.
“And we’ve just had a bad four or five weeks, we’ve just had a tough time. Up until that we were having a great season. So I am disappointed that it has drifted away.”
McCarthy says Cole Skuse could be back for Tuesday’s home game against Fulham: “Skusey’s got a bit of a bad back and a stiff neck. He looks like he’s wearing a suit of armour at the minute.
“If you ask him to turn around it’s very slowly. But Tuesday’s a long time away and we’ve good physios and staff.
“Reg Varney has a hamstring problem and Ainsley Maitland-Niles, I just didn’t put in the 18, I got some of our young players on the bench. Good decision that turned out to be, didn’t it?!”
Wednesday boss Carlos Carvalhal was pleased with his side's display but disappointed with the result.
“I can see positives and negatives about this game," he said. "Negative in my opinion, just the score, that’s the one thing negative about the game.
“The positive is the way that we reacted after the last game [a 4-1 loss at Bristol City] and the way we reacted after Ipswich scored the goal.
“We missed a lot of chances. Even after the one when we had three or four clear chances, and everybody will accept that the Ipswich goalkeeper is the man of the match, I think it’s very, very clear."
He added: “We played against a strong opponent, they have ambitions in this competition and an opponent also play a lot in this game, play the future in this game. And we did really, really very well.”
Photo: Action Images
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