Date: 9th February 2017 at 4:43pm
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There were signs once again in his lunch time press conference today that manager Mick McCarthy is perhaps in a more considered frame of mind but when he spoke to Stuart Watson from the East Anglian Daily Times he was his usual candid self.

When asked if he was feeling a little on edge after a season of underachievement he focused on the Reading game and said, ‘ We played really well on Saturday. I`ll take it game-by-game myself. That was a really good performance and the performance that I would be proud to put out every week.’

And when asked if he needed a performance like that for his own state of mind he commented frankly, ‘ I needed it for myself. I want to feel good about things.’

He continued:

‘I don`t like feeling bad about how we`re playing.’ That I guess is common sense but it is hard to know whether he needs this feel-good factor for himself or for the club – or for both but certainly a manager who is under pressure would find it very hard to hide it from his players. Perhaps he couldn’t?

The fine Town display against The Royals may have been born out of a desire by the players to convince him that he has not lost the dressing room and certainly on that showing, there is still some life left in the old dog.

He made some important changes and Town were much more focused on going forward. Whether Cole Skuse’s early departure ended up being of help to the Blues remains to be seen but now that he is fit again, we can expect him to be back in the team to face Villa away in two days time, so let’s see how we perform in this one?

There were other encouraging signs in last saturday’s 2-2 draw. David McGoldrick and Tom Lawrence seem to pair very well up front and I don’t think it will be too long before Didz is also finding the net again.

The bench also looked very strong and although the three strikers sitting on it did not come on, it is a nice headache to have for a manager knowing that all three are capable of making an impact.

Last night managing director Ian Milne was on the Naked Football Show on community radio and I was encouraged by his honesty and sometimes too, his sense of humour!

He seemed to accept that not everything in the Ipswich garden is rosy and said that it was important that supporters aired their views in public so that the club could address the problems.

He emphasised the need for the team to try and play entertaining football and was aware that the main reason for falling gate receipts was because Town did not do it often enough.

With Luke Chambers and centre-half Christophe Berra over their niggles, we can expect them both two to be back at the back and it will be interesting to see who is on the bench at Villa, now that Mick McCarthy has a strong squad to choose from.

Frank Weston – Editor of Vital Ipswich


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