|Luton Town 0 v 2 Ipswich Town|
Tuesday, 8th August 2017 Kick-off 19:45
McCarthy Delighted With Cup Victory
Tuesday, 8th Aug 2017 22:58
Town boss Mick McCarthy was delighted with his side’s 2-0 Carabao Cup first round victory over Luton at Kenilworth Road, particularly given the quality of the opposition, who thrashed Yeovil 8-2 on Saturday.
“I am delighted with it, and they’re a very good side, they proved that on Saturday when they murdered Yeovil,” McCarthy said.
“A bit like us at Charlton, just one of those days when everything goes right for that team, which was summed up by Alan McCormack’s goal which flew in from a clearance from a corner kick.
“You could see today from the way they play, they way they linked up. They play a really attacking system, playing that diamond and it did cause us a few problems, they had some chances, I have to be honest
“It’s not a perfect performance by us, but it’s still a very good one and it’s a clean sheet and a 2-0 win, so we’re in the next round of the Carabao Cup.”
McCarthy was pleased to build on Saturday’s opening day win against Birmingham, the Blues recording back to back victories in their first two fixtures having had to wait until April to do the same last season.
“That is always the case, I’ve never tried to lose one of these games,” he said. “I think this is the hardest game of the season. Players all want to play on Saturday against Birmingham and the ones that don’t are bitterly disappointed.
“I spoke about it at the team meeting before the game. The ones who come in and think ‘I’m playing Tuesday, I won’t play Saturday, I’m not in the gaffer’s first team, I’ll change it again’.
“But I said to them that it’s an audition to be in the team this, and there’s one thing for certain, if you don’t pull your finger out and play well and run about you’ve no chance of getting in the team on Saturday.
“I think the young ones have given us a real bit of fizz in there. I thought Tristan Nydam and Flynn Downes were excellent. And even Woolfy [Luke Woolfenden] coming on at half-time and not letting anybody down.’ With Bryan Klug watching from the stand, McCarthy said it was a good night for the Blues academy.
“Flynn and Tristan, they’re nailed on footballers, there’s no doubt in my mind. Woolfy I didn’t know [as well]. He comes and trains with us, of course I know him, and he’s trained with us more in the last couple of weeks because we’ve not had enough players. And it’s lovely to see him come on and do well.
“They can be proud the lads in the academy. They always want to see players get in the first team.
“And I get asked at times at every club I’ve been at, ‘Can you get any in your first team?’. Aand I say ‘If you’ve got any good ‘uns and they’re good enough I’ll put them in the first team’. Well, there they are.”
The Blues boss also had praise for skipper Luke Chambers: “Chambo’s been great, 46 games he played last year. He had a bit of a knock from Saturday but I needed him in the team and he really played well.”
McCarthy handed yesterday’s new signing Martyn Waghorn his debut from the bench and was pleased with his new acquisition, who he says cost a lot less than the reported £1 million with rumours that the initial fee may have been as low as £300,000 circulating on social media.
“Waggy, I’m delighted with him,” McCarthy said. “That’s an absolute snip, and it’s not the million quid, by the way that was reported, nowhere near that. Sounds good for the club that, and for Rangers, I guess, but you’ll find that’s not. That might be his deal over two years, I don’t know. It’s an absolute snip. I’m delighted with him.
“I said to him, ‘Can you go and do Tristan’s job?’. He said, ‘No problem, just stick me on’. And he went on and he was very good. He did his defensive duties. I’m thrilled we’ve got him.”
Loanee Bersant Celina made his Town debut and impressed his new manager with his approach to the game as much as with his skills.
“He’s what everybody likes but sometimes you get a bit of that and it can be a juggling act and nothing happens,” he said.
“But that wasn’t him tonight, he contributed, I thought his pace and his running power, he competed, he tried to win headers. His all-round game was good. I was delighted with him.
“And Didzy getting his goals will do him the world of good. He probably thought he was fit to play on Saturday. But that will do him great tonight.”
On the downside, both Adam Webster and Cole Skuse suffered knocks, McCarthy confirmed: “Adam’s a concern, he’s rocked his ankle again and Skusey’s jarred his knee. Skusey’s pretty durable and plays his games but we’ll have to wait and see tomorrow.”
Lutn boss Nathan Jones was proud of the way his team played against the Blues, despite the defeat.
"I am, he said. "There are still elements of naivety too. But they've got real Championship quality. David McGoldrick's been one hell of good player for a long time and he was the difference tonight: two bits of real quality from him.
"I don't think we deserved to concede the second goal but we have to eradicate that. As far as performance-wise and how they went about their work, I'm very proud of them.
"They worked tirelessly, moved the ball really well and we had the best chances first half.
"Elliot Lee's missed a glorious opportunity to send us in level and we've actually, apart from the counter-attack, we were making all the running. They were just trying to pick us off on the counter-attack.
"I was very pleased. We acquitted ourselves well and it was a real even and well-contested game. I'm proud of them today."
He added: "We believe in ourselves and we're disappointed to have lost. Ipswich are a good Championship side, they had a good win against big spending Birmingham on the weekend so we're delighted.
"It's not our focus and I'm glad we went out admirably really because the league's our focus and we don't want any distractions this year."
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