Date: 11th October 2017 at 6:04pm
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Football is not rocket science, although science itself plays much more of a part in football than it ever used to, it must be said.

And coaches and managers are constantly trying to find that winning formula; whether it is born out of a solid defence, a creative midfield or a partnership up front that produces goals.

Now, when Mick McCarthy took over the Town managerial post almost five years ago, he knew that the most important thing he had to do was to steady the ship and in his first game in charge, our leaky defence came away with a crucial 0-1 victory at Birmingham, which of course helped to change the players mindset and we avoided almost certain relegation that season, thanks largely to his persuasive powers.

We eventually finished fourteenth, which was a remarkable achievement, having found ourselves rock bottom when McCarthy took over on the 1st November, 2012.

We continued our steady climb up the table with a ninth placed finish in 2013 and a sixth placed play-off place in 2014 but of course the reality was, we had punched above our weight and we failed to make any impression in the knockout phase of the Championship competition.

Then injuries to key players and an obsession with defending at all costs, meant that goals were increasingly hard to come by and we started to go backwards. In the 2016-17 season we ended up in 16th place, which was our lowest finish since 1958-59!

What made matters even worse was that the football we played, not only failed to get results but it was also very drab and unattractive to the eye and ‘McCarthy out’ battle cry seemed to get louder by the day at that time.

Strangely perhaps, owner Marcus Evans did not show McCarthy the door but I think privately suggested that if we could not always get the right result we had at least to try to entertain the fans.

This season and everything seems to have changed. We leak lots of goals again but generally score even more and our attacking options are better than at any time in McCarthy’s five year reign!

David McGoldrick has rekindled his form of old and with the former Rangers new recruits Martyn Waghorn and Joe Garner, goals from our forwards are again in plentiful supply.

Even the striker he loaned out to Rotherham, Kieffer Moore is joint top scorer in Division One and could be recalled by the club in January, if needs must.

And now today, we hear that Town are very close to signing another young striker from Waterford for a five figure fee!

He is young 19 year old striker Aaron Drinan, who impressed when he was at the club on trial in August; along with another Waterford trialist John Martin, who it is believed may also join the club shortly as well.

A club official in Ireland explained the situation. ‘John has been over once already and they want another look so we`ll see but we are much further along the road with Aaron so it should happen in the next day or two I believe.’

What an amazing transformation in terms of attacking options then, and with Flynn Downes and Tristan Nydam also in the attacking midfield mold, we have many reason to be cheerful right now.

The defence is getting stronger, as those injuries lessen and a midfield that contains perhaps Tom Adeyemi, Grant Ward and Bersant Celina, means that it could rain goals from everywhere this term!

Frank Weston – Editor of Vital Ipswich


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