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McCarthy Relieved as Goalless and Winless Run Ends
Tuesday, 18th Oct 2016 22:57

Town boss Mick McCarthy admitted there was a feeling of relief after the Blues defeated Burton Albion 2-0 at Portman Road to end their five-game winless and goalless run.

“Of course there is,” he said. “I’m not going to tell a lie about it because we’ve just gone five games without a win.

“I think I’ve said to you before that at Wolves we were top of the league and we went 13 games I think it was without a win.

“And we were still top of the league when we won and that was a real sense of relief. We went and beat Crystal Palace 1-0 and then Sheffield Wednesday 1-0, both away games.

“And that was a sense of relief and we were top of the league. So if we were 17th or 10th or top I think after five games without a win there’s always going to be a sense of relief.”

He added: “It’s not been nice over the last couple of weeks because a small minority start to doubt me, doubt the players, doubt the club and that atmosphere can be difficult to play in.

“It took a while for the game to get going. I know we scored early on. We all prefer it when people have got happy, smiling faces and want to come and watch us and like us.

“Hopefully that will go some way to achieving that. Did somebody say we’re three points off the play-offs? I was shit yesterday, I couldn’t do my job and I ought to be out the door. Today we’re three points off the play-offs, it’s bonkers.

“It doesn’t bother me, by the way, it’s a matter of fact, it’s just a crazy old league, we’ve got a lot of games to play and that was a tough, tough Championship game.”

Reflecting on the match itself, McCarthy said: “It’s nice, a win and some goals. I think they’re a very capable team. I think they play a system that can be difficult to play against.

“They get men forward, they’ve got two big fellas up front. I thought they were a constant threat.

“The game was open and I did think if it was left wide open we’d win as I thought we’d got better players up at the top.

“We got off to a good start, it was great from Chambo. Another clean sheet, which is fab, five out of seven games we’ve had clean sheets.

“We’re not going to be beating teams three, four or five-nil, we might have a better chance when we’ve got Didz and Jonny and people back, but it’s never been that way, so keeping a clean sheet and winning 2-0 suits me fine.”

He continued: “I believe they attack with six players, they have the two wing-backs and two forwards and two midfield players, they leave four at the back and I was happy to defend with six and leave four up against their four.

“Thankfully it worked in our favour in the end. We had the better finishers on the night.”

McCarthy was happy with the performance of lone central striker Leon Best - “He is [getting sharper and sharper], I’m pleased with him” - and was delighted to see Freddie Sears finally end his goal drought.

“He’s been so selfless in the way he plays, whether he’s wide right, wide left, in a four or a three or up front in a two. He just goes and plays,” he said.

“Never once does he question and he gives us such energy and such pace and he’s a constant threat in behind.

“What was it 27 games? Thirty-eight! It was worse than I thought. I’d said I’d watched three series of Scandal since he scored, it’s probably four actually.

“But, do you know what, I’ve never once considered leaving him out because he’s terrific, he really is. He contributes in such a way that he causes problems for everybody else.”

McCarthy was pleased to see his entire team celebrating with Sears, including keeper Bartosz Bialkowski: “I like that when all the team celebrates goalscorers. I just hope he didn’t pull his hamstring when he sprinted up the pitch, Bart.

“I really like that about the team, that they do celebrate together, nobody’s left out, nobody’s stood watching and I think because it was Freddie I think it was a little bit extra special.”

The Town boss says he was going to leave Jonathan Douglas out of his side anyway but the midfielder has a minor knee problem.

“I changed the team because I wanted Bish and Kevin Bru in the team at home and I thought they’re hard to break down with the way they play and that they might give us a bit more subtlety, Bish certainly running with it,” he added.

“But Dougie’s been brilliant, he has got a bit of fluid on his knee, to be fair. For a guy of 34 he’s incredible and he’ll be back in on Saturday.

“Jonny Williams has just got a bit of a tight thigh and we’re protecting him. He’ll be all right, I think he’ll be involved on Saturday.”

McCarthy also confirmed that David McGoldrick, who scored for the U23s as they drew 2-2 at Colchester on Monday, will also be in the squad travelling to the North-East for Saturday’s game against leaders Newcastle United.

Burton manager Nigel Clough was delighted with his team’s performance on his club’s first ever visit to Portman Road, but disappointed with their finishing.

“We made enough chances to win three matches,” he said. “It was the same story as Saturday. The one thing we can’t do is put the ball in the back of the net for them.

“In terms of the way we played, it was the best that we’ve played this season in the first half, without a doubt.

“So, I’m delighted with the level of the performance, just not the finishing and the couple of soft goals we’ve given away at the other end. Everything else tonight was very good indeed.

“To come here and play like that gives an awful lot of encouragement. And we played well on Saturday as well, so it’s one of those cases where we might be rubbish on Friday and get a result.”

He added: “I’m very pleased with an awful lot of things, aspects of the performance tonight. You’ve got to remember, to put it in perspective, we’re Burton Albion coming to Ipswich Town and we’ve played like that in the first half. We’re disappointed we’ve lost but certainly not disheartened with the performance.”

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Stato added 23:01 - Oct 18
How lucky for you mick that Douglas was injured.

Wallingford_Boy added 23:01 - Oct 18
Hang on, Douglas will be back in?! I assume he means back in the squad and not the starting XI, this place would explode if he started on Saturday!

Town4me added 23:04 - Oct 18
Great win soured by the comment "He'll be back in on Saturday ......."

Mark added 23:05 - Oct 18
We can all agree with that, a big relief not just to win but to have scored a couple of goals! Perhaps Douglas's absence helped as did Burton's attacking approach to the match which left the game open, I really enjoyed it. Burton could have scored a few goals, as could we.

I am delighted for Chambers and Sears, both good characters and hard workers for the team so they deserved their goals.

Best showed some quality, as he gets fully fit he could be a real asset. Lawrence impressive going forward too and with McGoldrick and Williams not far from a return maybe there are some reasons for cautious optimism.

prebsa added 23:06 - Oct 18
No Mick I don't doubt the club I doubt you! And yes you were sh1t yesterday you are sh1t today and you will be sh1t tomorrow too.

Also complete rubbish about Douglas there was no way he would of left him out. He has played nearly every home game! Complete rubbish that Mick wanted Bri and Bishop in the team together. He is just sayin all this to try and butter up the fans! And ofcourse he will be back Saturday straight back into Micks side with his other favourites like Chambers at RB.

More total rubbish from the stubborn man!

Pencilpete added 23:07 - Oct 18
Just listening to some so called fans on the radio and on herejust makes me laugh .... so when we lose we're $hit and when we win we are lucky.

ITFC literally can't do right for doing wrong in some peoples eyes !!

evansblue added 23:12 - Oct 18
Great to get a win and see some goals. Lawrence was excellent and so pleased for Sears.
I also love the way Mick is so honest and level headed in his post match interviews. Onwards and upwards.

Town4me added 23:13 - Oct 18
I do love this club but the problem is pencilpete, most of the games we do win we ARE lucky and it so painful, it hurts!

hoppy added 23:19 - Oct 18
Just a minor thing... why do you keep putting things like 'goalless and winless'... surely the first bit makes the second bit rather difficult to manage anyway, doesn't it?

bobwya added 23:22 - Oct 18
And even more sh1t from you presba. Go away with your complete negativity.
Where is penguinblue tonight? Ah no we won didn't we.

stantheman added 23:25 - Oct 18
You do get a lot of plonkers on this comments page dont you think?

Pencilpete added 23:32 - Oct 18
How about all the 'unlucky' moments this season then ?

1. Disallowed goal at Wolves
2. Disallowed goal in the derby match
3. several decisions which went against us at Reading

These things tend to even themselves out but only if you don't just keep looking for negatives ........

Just remember we won tonight and kept a clean sheet, in fact we've only conceded 2 goals in our last 7 matches but nobody talk about that because it's not something that can be used against Big Mick

TractorBeezer added 23:37 - Oct 18
Lots of positives tonight. Shame that there is still much negativity ranging from moaning to really bitter comments.
Do we have some areas to improve on? 0f course, however, we have key players healing and things are improving so let's be positive and really get behind Mick and the team.

ianmarshall10 added 23:47 - Oct 18
Most of the negative fans are deluded on here big time they must think we should play like Baca all the time. The fact is we're playing in one of the most difficult leagues in Europe any one can beat anyone on there day. Well done Mick and the lads keep up the good work.

Michael11 added 23:54 - Oct 18
I seriously hope that "Dougie will be back in on Saturday" just means he'll be back in the squad. How can you assure someone of their place when they've been a huge part of the problem and when he was missing we win? Exactly the kind of favouritism that's got us in this situation IMO.

prebsa added 23:57 - Oct 18
bobwya complete negativity I think if you read my many posts that is conplete false! I won't be going anywhere and I will be here much longer than you. If you think Mick is the right man for this job then you are blind he has done great to stable us. It we will not be going up with him in charge! We have the squad and player capable but the way we play ruins it!

Stato added 00:29 - Oct 19
The fact is many of us having been saying for a long long time why play with holding midfielders when at home especially against weaker opposition so it does look bad on McCarthy when his hand is forced and we're proven right. I don't care if he plays 5 holding midfielders away at Newcastle but please set us up to win our home games not scrap out dire boring draws with no goals and no honest attempt to win the game.

Stato added 00:30 - Oct 19
Meant why play with TWO holding midfielders

sidtheswan added 05:18 - Oct 19
You're still S&@£ today because we only played more attacking because of injury to Douglas although that affected us defensively. So it was a forced change and something you wouldn't have done normally and also Burton were poor in the shooting department! Anyway it's nice that someone can swear on this forum because we can't!

sidtheswan added 05:21 - Oct 19
Just noticed that other people can swear but I got blocked last time because it was offensive. Oh well 3 points that's the main thing!

terryf added 06:34 - Oct 19
A much better performance, although still room for improvement. It was nice to see three in the box at times and a midfielder, Bishop, getting ahead of the centre-forward. I thought Bishop, Webster and Best played well and there were times when Lawrence, my man of the match, was on fire. Some encouraging signs. Sadly dear old Mick misses the point. It's the majority of fans not the minority who doubt him and its his style of play we all sick and tired of. Most of us go and watch our Team out of loyalty but also with the expectation that we maybe entertained.

muccletonjoe added 06:40 - Oct 19
A win is a win. Having said that mick has a long way to go to convince alot of people we are heading anywhere near the top 6

Brownie added 06:47 - Oct 19
Good win & by hook or by crook we got creative players on the pitch.

I wasn't there so can't comment on performance. My view hasn't changed though; MM is not the man to take us forward. Saturday is obviously a tough game but surely he is not going to bring back Douglas? Either way the journey north can be taken with slightly more optimism but still in my case not a lot of confidence!

Finally when will people get their heads round that whether you are a MM fan or not you are a fan! My view is sniping at each other because you have a different view but want the same result is pretty pointless..


Europablue added 07:14 - Oct 19
I haven't been too concerned with the results, we are struggling to score, but we also have the second best defense. The problem of the style of play has not been fixed to be consistently better.
To play the style we do we have to at least reach the playoffs or it feels like a waste of money and a terrible way to spend our time supporting town.

DurhamTownFan added 07:17 - Oct 19
Never mind this game-Newcastle away will show where we really are and could be the toughest game of the season. If we go down 3-0, then what? Which is why I believe that we will again go back to type and set up for a 0-0 with skuse and Douglas in the middle. It will be boring and ugly and well probably lose 1-0!

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