Chambers: We Want the Manager Here Next Season, Simple as That
Monday, 12th Mar 2018 17:15
Town skipper Luke Chambers has gone public for the first time to admit that he and his team-mates all want boss Mick McCarthy to stay in charge when his contract expires at the end of the current campaign.
Regardless of whether or not it is a minority, as McCarthy has suggested in recent weeks, there are a number of supporters who are advocating change, some to the extent that they have vowed never to return to Portman Road until a new man is at the helm.
McCarthy, who was appointed November 2012 and has won 104 of his 273 games in charge, is refusing to discuss what is likely to happen when his current deal expires in the summer, while owner and chairman Marcus Evans has yet to announce whether he intends triggering the two-year option the club has on the manager’s services.
But Chambers laid his cards on the table today to announce: “We want the manager here next season, simple as that. That’s from a players’ point of view.
“Obviously, I feel he’s done a good job here on the budget we’ve got, which is probably one of the bottom four or five in the league.
“Last season wasn’t great and we hear a lot about the football that’s being played not being great.
“But at the end of the day football is a results business and I feel he has given consistent performances and results.
“Everyone wants their teams to play like Barcelona and get promoted but sometimes that’s a little bit unrealistic.”
The uncertainty over McCarthy’s future mirrors the situation last year when Chambers, who was almost transferred to previous club Nottingham Forest in the January transfer window, had to wait before being offered a new two-year deal that will keep him at the club until the summer of 2019.
It was the same this year as vice-captain Cole Skuse was approaching the end of his deal when he signed a fresh two-year contract due to expire in 2020.
Chambers insists he remains in the dark about McCarthy’s future but added: “We’ve had chats about the whole situation. We spoke about my own situation last year and Cole Skuse was in a similar position this year, plus Bart as well. But that’s football and that’s the way the chairman wants to run the football club.
“It’s obviously not ideal for everyone. If you’re identifying players for next season it can’t help not knowing whether the manager’s going to be here or not.
“But it’s out of our hands and all we can do is continue what we have been doing – giving everything for the cause and the manager. That’s what we will continue to do until the end of the season.”
Asked if the ‘will he stay or will he go?’ state of affairs is hindering the club’s on-the-field activities, Chambers responded: “The manager’s situation is not what is going through the boys’ minds. We’ve always looking to perform for the manager and I feel we have done over the last few weeks.
“We’ve won two of our last three and drawn the other one, and performances have been encouraging. We should have beaten Norwich – that’s a disappointment that will live with me forever – but I feel the last few weeks have been a lot more positive.
“Yes, the football wasn’t great [against Sheffield United] on Saturday but away from home at Sheffield Wednesday we did well, especially in the first half, and it was similar at Preston.
“So we’ve beaten these two away and we’ve just got to build on what we’ve created over the last few weeks.”
It was pointed out to Chambers that many fans are frustrated, some are downright bored by what they perceive to be a lack of entertainment at Portman Road and a significant number would prefer to see a change of manager before next season.
He said: “That’s football, isn’t it? People do get bored and there are lots of changes throughout the leagues all the time. Managerial changes happen and the turnover in players is massive. But people want change in every walk of life, be it in football or whatever, so that’s the way it is.
“As players we don’t want that to happen. I wouldn’t say we are comfortable – we want to see players coming in like the club brought in last summer.
“We’ve missed half of them through injury. We’re building something where we can challenge, even if we should be nowhere near it on our budget.”
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