Skuse: Maybe Boss's Contract Situation Should Have Been Sorted
Thursday, 15th Mar 2018 17:07
Cole Skuse believes an earlier decision regarding manager Mick McCarthy’s soon-to-expire contract could have prevented the ugly atmosphere at Portman Road on Tuesday.
The experienced midfielder, ruled out through injury, sat and suffered in the stand as McCarthy faced a torrent of abuse from some sections of the crowd as the 3-0 defeat by Hull City unfolded.
No one knows whether McCarthy, the Championship’s longest-serving manager, will be here beyond the end of the season. That is when his current deal expires, although the club have a two-year option on his services and have yet to confirm whether they will be triggering it.
Skuse said: “Maybe the situation with Mick and his contract should have been resolved a little while ago and hopefully it will be done for everyone’s sake, not just ours as players but the fans too. We’ll see what comes of that.
“It was a very, very tough gig for me to sit there. I think the lads deserve credit for the way they conducted themselves and held themselves together.
“They came off with their heads held high. As tough as it was to sit and watch it – it’s my team-mates and friends, the lads I work with every day, out there – they slogged away in a difficult atmosphere.
“I wasn’t on the pitch at the end but I made my way down to the changing rooms after the game to meet them. As they came in I tried to say my bit to help them out. At the end of the day it’s only us that can turn things round.
“It’s hard to cope in the circumstances and it’s not just football but any industry. If you’re trying to do your job and people are giving you criticism it wouldn’t be easy for anyone.
“I’ve got to take my hat off to the lads for the way they conducted themselves. They didn’t stop going and that’s kind of in us as players. We don’t stop but to keep going the way they did was a credit to each and every one of them.
“There are lads who have been around the block a bit and experienced tough times – I certainly have in my career.
“I remember playing for Bristol City in a derby against Cardiff where we were having season tickets thrown at us. It’s part and parcel of your job, and you’ve got to be mentally tough.
“If I speak to any of the academy players I tell them they can have all the ability in the world, but you also need a tough mentality and a strong backbone to make it in the world of football.
“If you look at the top players at, say, Real Madrid – and I know they are being paid hundreds of thousands of pounds a week – they need it too.
“To get through the tough times we have to bounce back. It’s not as if we can bring in 22 new players so it’s down to the lads in the dressing room to deal with it and get on with the next game.”
It was pointed out to Skuse that the fans’ reaction on Tuesday was borne out of the frustration that the club appears to be treading water but he was quick to make the points that he and the other players are ambitious to achieve more.
He added: “We never head into a season thinking ‘I’d love to finish 12th’ or ‘I’d love to scrap it out in a relegation battle’. As a club we set out at the start of the season to finish in the top six.
“But the financial situation within the club, the wage structure, is completely different to that at Wolves or Fulham, for example.
“I heard someone the other day comparing us to Cardiff in a financial way. Well, they signed a striker from Bolton in January for £6 million. Could we have done that? I don’t think it’s fair to compare us to a team like Cardiff. I don’t know what he earns – maybe 25 to 30 grand a week – but that’s not us.
“We don’t want to be sat in mid-table but it’s a fact that if we had beaten Hull we would be six points off the play-offs with nine games to go.
“As it is we’re nine points short but the season’s not been a disaster, although it’s not where we want to be. We’ll be doing our utmost to finish on as many points as we can and as high up the league table as we can.
“Hopefully, we will do it in an entertaining style but if we have to grind out wins we’ll take that.”
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