Date: 9th September 2016 at 4:07pm
Written by:

We have in our company one of the most cautious of souls on the planet in manager Mick McCarthy and the old adage of never change a winning team applies to his general thought process and he invariably does not sway too much from it.

That said, it normally makes complete sense to behave in this way because if you have won a difficult game at home and kept a clean sheet, then it is natural that you would not want to tamper with it too much and why should you?

I would however argue that you SHOULD simply because we are playing away to a team that thumped us 5-1 in the same fixture last season on Sky Sports One and we surely should do anything to avoid a repeat performance!

There are big differences though. Firstly it is NOT Dean Gerken in goal and secondly it is NOT Steve Clarke who is in charge anymore of the Royals, who are now managed by Dutchman Jaap Stam.

Stam has already said that he does not expect a repeat performance – or indeed another goal feest and we must not forget that last term Reading had but six shots on target and five of them went in!

Of course as this goes to print, it is four hours before kick-off so we do not know Mccarthy’s line-up for certain but if you were a betting man, you would think he would not tinker too much.

McCarthy has already made it clear that Tommy Smith starts again and that is fine by me but the midfield is worrying because most of the real talent – unless he changes, things lies on the bench.

If he does what he did against Preston North End, then we can expect the midfield to consist of Cole Skuse, Jonathan Douglas and Kevin Bru and surely this combination lacks both invention and incisiveness and they are the qualities needed to unlock defences.

I hope I am proved wrong and the gaffer surprises us all but I am certainly not expecting it – nor I think is Jaap Stam!

If however this scenario materializes we can expect to see a fit again Leon Best, Conor Grant and indeed Tom Lawrence bench warming and we will probably only bear witness to them if plan A fails.

Throwing caution to the wind is in most cases madness if you are serious about taking on managerial responsibilities but equally, playing negatively when you have a wealth of real talent at your disposal is at best overly cautious and at worst rather foolhardy.

I think Town could win tonight but only if we utilize to the fullest extent the talent that we now have in our squad.



Frank Weston – Editor of Vital Ipswich











 

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