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Ipswich Town 4 v 0 Charlton Athletic
SkyBet League One
Saturday, 30th April 2022 Kick-off 12:30
McKenna: It Was the Day We Wanted to Give Supporters
Saturday, 30th Apr 2022 16:05

Boss Kieran McKenna was pleased to have given the Blues’ supporters the day he was hoping to, Town having thrashed Charlton Athletic 4-0 in their final game of the campaign at Portman Road.

Wes Burns scored twice to take his tally to 13 and make him the club’s top marksman this season with Tyreeq Bakinson and the departing James Norwood netting the other two.

“It was the day that we wanted to give the supporters, first and foremost,” McKenna said. “They’ve deserved that.

“The way they’ve got behind the team all season has been outstanding. They’ve been fantastic for us home and away and we knew there was going to be a big turn-out today and we knew it was our responsibility to do everything we could to send them off into the summer with a positive feel. That’s the most pleasing thing that we’ve managed to do that.”

Has he felt a big win has been coming? “I think so. I think it was a very good performance but it probably wasn’t too dissimilar to the performances against Wigan or Plymouth, which we did win, or Portsmouth or Cheltenham at home, lots of games where we’ve hit close to those levels.

“I do think probably today and against Wigan showed we’re getting better, but we’ve had lots of really good performances.

“I think the key difference today is that we get the first goal and that just opens the game up a little bit and gives Charlton more incentive to come out and try and attack us and that’s something that we enjoy.

“I think it was a really good performance, we’ve been speaking for a while that we’re close to scoring a few goals but it’s one thing speaking about it and another thing doing it and it’s pleasing that we managed to come over that hurdle.

“We scored two in the second half against Wigan having knocked the door down for the first 45 in that game and not scored, and then we’ve gone and scored four today, so I think that’s hopefully a good sign for the development of the team.”

After it was pointed out that Burns, who was sitting near him waiting to speak to the press, had top-scored for the season following his two goals today, McKenna laughed: “Did you? Is that why you didn’t pass to Macauley? I’m only joking, he passes it really well.

“I said it yesterday when we did press on Friday, obviously a very good season, a very productive season, which is important in terms of his goals and assists.

“I’ve really enjoyed getting to know Wes a little bit better, learning a bit more about his career, the trajectory that he’s had.

“A really good example for people who can come to the football and improve and thrive in the environment and enjoy the pressure and the atmosphere around the club and thrive in it and improve whether you’re 19 or 27 like Wes or 33.

“We want players to come here, enjoy their time here, improve and thrive and help the team to push forward.

“Wes has managed to do that this year and he knows now that next year is a really big year for him. Coming and having one good season is one thing but to push on again and repeat next year and go to another level next year, that’s certainly the challenge for him now and I’m sure he’s going to look to that starting in pre-season.”

McKenna was pleased for sub Cameron Humphreys, who picked up an assist for Norwood’s goal.

“Very pleasing for him,” he said. “He’s been training with us lots over the last few months, a player we have very high thoughts about, that we want to be very careful with and map out the right steps for his career at the right times.


“We wanted to get him some exposure last week [at Crewe] but it didn’t happen, so it was important today that we were going to give him that opportunity no matter what happened in the game really, I was already set on that.

“It was nice for him to come on, he’s not been involved in a home league game, he told me, so that’s his home league debut.

“Obviously it’s a nice time to come on when a team’s playing well and is comfortable and in the lead, and it’s important to give them the right exposures at the right time, and today was a good time for that and I thought he performed very well when he came on and obviously pleased for him to get the assist.”

Also making his home league debut was centre-half Elkan Baggott, who made his senior League One bow at Rotherham earlier in the month.

“Very pleased for him,” McKenna said. “It was big step forward from the Rotherham performance for him. In his reflection of the Rotherham performance, he was happy that he got through the game but felt that he had more to offer in different aspects of the game in that game, which is completely understandable for his first game.

“I thought in that game he did well to manage and get through the game but today I thought he started to show more of the attributes that we see on a daily basis, started to show more confidence on the ball, more authority in his game and stepped into the game well and gave us a nice balance on that left-hand side of the pitch.

“He’s had two league games and he’s had to mark Michael Smith and Jayden Stockley, so he’s been right in at the deep end in dealing with physical strikers who are very good in the air, so that will stand him really good stead in the future.”

Regarding Norwood scoring on his final appearance for the club having been told he won’t be offered new terms, McKenna said: “Delighted for him, I have to say in my time at the club I’ve really enjoyed working with him.

“I think he’s been excellent in the dressing room, excellent in training, very good and supportive with the younger players and we’ve had a good time with him.

“It’s a nice way for him to finish it. He spoke well in the statement he put out yesterday and he’s had three years here and he’s given his best, given a good account of himself and we wish him all the best.”

TWTD understands Wigan and Oxford are among the clubs to be monitoring Norwood’s situation and McKenna knows the Blues may come up against him next season.

“He’s capable of getting goals, for sure,” he said. “We’re fully aware of that. His minutes per goals for us this year has been good as well, so we wish him all the best.

“I’m sure he’ll go and score goals and it’s up to us to make sure he hopefully doesn’t score against us if and when our paths cross.”

McKenna says the Blues will confirm who will be staying and who will be moving on in the days to come.

“I think the club will make their announcements in due course and players are free to discuss things as and when they want,” he said.

“We’ve had discussions all week and the large majority of the players have a good idea where they’re at. There are goals and targets and plans for next season and we’ve just got a few to finish off tomorrow as well.”

TWTD revealed yesterday that as well as Norwood, Carroll has been told he can move on but McKenna wouldn’t confirm that that’s the case.

“I don’t think that’s been formally announced by the club yet or by Tom, so I wouldn’t like to comment on that,” he said.

“That’s for either Tom to discuss what his future plans are or for the club to make a formal announcement.”

Looking ahead to next season, McKenna says the target for next season is to have more afternoons and performances like today’s.

“We spoke about that in the dressing room after the game,” he said. “We’re certainly not going to get carried away with ourselves after today on the last day of the season.

“We know we’ve put in some really good performances, we know that at our best some of our football is a real match for anyone in this league or I would dare say the leagues higher.

“But we also know the reality for this team and for the football club is that we’ve had three seasons now in League One a long way off the play-off positions.

“There are reasons for that, things that we need to reflect on and look at as a football club and make sure that we have enjoyable days like today where we perform very well and win games but also that we’re more robust and effective at winning games over a 46-game season in a very, very difficult and demanding league.

“I think we’re all really clear on that, it’s not going to be easy but we’re going to try and make good steps in that direction this summer.”

Charlton boss Johnnie Jackson felt a chastening afternoon showed where his team is at the present time.

“It was a timely reminder as to where we are as a group, the table doesn’t lie and we have a lot of catching up to do,” he said.

“It’s a really busy summer for the football club, it needs a rebuild and we need to recruit the right ones in the right areas and come back fighting next season.

“We have got a good core who will be coming back to us and if we have the right types in the right areas I’ve got no doubt that next season we can be at the other end of the league where we want to be.

“It’s the last game of the season and a lot of the lads on the football pitch are uncertain about their futures. A lot of our lads lost their edge today but it (the result) was disappointing.

“We have not ended up where we wanted to end up but there will be lots of lessons learnt. The season has gone but we have to dust ourselves down and be better next season.”

Regarding 22-year-old keeper Nathan Harness, who was making his league debut against the club which released him at 16, he said: “I just said to him that it was a baptism of fire, but that's not on him. I don't think the 10 in front of him helped him out really, to be honest, when you've got a young lad making his debut.

“But pleased for him, he'll still have enjoyed it, that's his league debut, he'll remember it for a long time and welcome to league football - when you come to places like this and you don't get it right, you can get a chasing.”


Photo: TWTD



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ricardo55555 added 16:58 - Apr 30
Sound words. I think we have a clever astute talented manager. We are in a-good place for giving it a real go for promotion. Exciting times ahead. Just hope for a cracking start. Or at least a solid start……..
12

Gforce added 17:05 - Apr 30
Good solid performance to see the season out,could easily have been 6 or 7 nil today.We have a really good nucleus of a side to build on for season.
As the boss says, we just need to be more robust and show more steel at times,especially against the bully boy teams.Need to sign a quality hard man to accompany Morsy in midfield, and obviously a new left wing back and that elusive 20 goal striker.I'm sure Mckenna knows exactly what's required and if he can recruit the right quality in those 3/4 positions ,I believe we will have a great chance of finally getting out of this horrible league next season.
8

Suffolkboy added 17:14 - Apr 30
Really can’t believe we could be in better hands now ; from the very top of the Management pyramid , through the Team set up ,and with a good structure being put in place we are proving to be sensible, positive ,businesslike and very purposeful .
Enthusiasm and intelligence runs throughout and we should look forward to next season with great expectation ,and hope fruitful recruitment matches our undoubted ambition .
COYB
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BobbyBell added 17:33 - Apr 30
I'm hoping now that the knew set up at ITFC have done their searching already and have targets in mind for some early signings. I hate it when players sign just before or during ore-season. I also hope we are looking abroad too.
6

brassy added 18:35 - Apr 30
sorry55555never meant to mark you down
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blues1 added 18:49 - Apr 30
Bobby Bell. Considering we are starting preseason mid June and the transfer window doesnt open until June 10th, the earliest signings will be just before preseason. So undoubtedly some will come during preseason. As they do at most clubs in any league.
0

Bazza8564 added 06:56 - May 1
Suspect the majority of our incoming players will be deals already done. I understand what Blues1 is saying, but loans and out of contract players will most likely have had their agents sorting futures out since January. I’m expecting the group to be complete again by pre season.
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Jonaldo added 07:35 - May 1
Well that should keep some of the "same old Ipswich" Doom Mongers from the last few weeks quiet.

McKenna has earned the backing he will get for the first 10 games of next season. Let's hope the team he assembles and prepares are sitting in the top 6 at the end of September.

We have every chance because we will have an extra player next season, our existing strikers lack ability or pace and have rarely put in a full shift.
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Ebantiass added 11:26 - May 1
Well played and a great way to finish the season.

We all know about left back and goal scorers needed , I think Evans fit and ready could be a hardman in midfield next to Sam but the thing i believe is critical is strikers. At least two or three. Bonne ,Norwood and Pigott are simply not good enough to get us out of this league despite a run of a few goals then dry periods. We need at least two strikers in the suit the gaffas style of play.

Seasons biggest disappointment for me Pigott absolutely woeful Im afraid to say.
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ChrisFelix added 11:27 - May 1
Watching yesterdays game & the talent on the pitch its hard to think we finished 11 in this league.
But looking back on the 2 points out of 12 gained from Cambridge & Cheltenham & the stolen points Wednesday & Sunderland took from us I have my answer
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brendenward35 added 19:46 - May 1
I'm hoping McKenna can sort out the only playing good one half. Sunderland away was a good example all over them 1st half then they totally dominated the 2nd. I have every confidence McKenna can turn this club around and working with Ashton will make next season ours. Ashton did miracle last summer just needs tweaking now and we will be up and running quickly next season.
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