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Mick McCarthy hails ‘big star’ Grant Ward and ‘water carrier’ Cole Skuse

PUBLISHED: 15:47 20 April 2017 | UPDATED: 15:48 20 April 2017

Grant Ward has featured in 44 games for Ipswich Town during his debut season at the club. Photo: Steve Waller

Grant Ward has featured in 44 games for Ipswich Town during his debut season at the club. Photo: Steve Waller

© Copyright Stephen Waller

Ipswich Town boss Mick McCarthy has hailed Grant Ward as one of the team’s biggest stars this season.

A £600k signing from Tottenham Hotspur last summer, the 22-year-old memorably scored a hat-trick on his debut after coming on as a half-time substitute in the 4-2 opening day home win over Barnsley.

He’s made 36 starts and a further seven substitute appearances since then, scoring three more times and playing in a variety of positions – from winger, to wing-back, central midfield and, most recently, as a No.10.

“He’s been a really big star for us, I think, not just in the last few games but over the season,” said McCarthy.

“He’s played in a number of positions, but playing in behind Didzy (Dabid McGoldrick) has really suited him.

“I remember Sparky (Mark Kennedy, former Under-23 boss) watched him for Spurs when he played as number 10 and reporting back about how well he played.

“He’s quite versatile and I think he’s really stepped up his game.”

Asked if he had found Ward’s best role in recent weeks, McCarthy replied: “It’s hard to deny that because of the energy that he’s got and the ability too. “It’s nice to be versatile though. When he plays wide he certainly helps the full-back in defensive situations, while he’s got that ability and pace to get by defenders and put crosses in.

“It’s nice to have that variation.”

He added: “I think Emyr (Huws) and Grant Ward would both appreciate the fact that Skusey (Cole Skuse) is sat there doing, as (Eric) Cantona called it, the ‘water carrier’ role. And I don’t know anybody who can do without water!

“They can get forwards knowing full well they have got security there.”

Kundai Benyu has left Ipswich Town to sign for Scottish champions Celtic on a four-year deal.

Ipswich Town fans don’t want to see talented young midfielder Kundai Benyu leave the club.

Scottish football giants Celtic are close to signing Ipswich Town’s highly-rated youngster, Kundai Benyu, according to reports.

Former Ipswich Town target Kyle Lafferty has signed for Scottish Premier League side Hearts.

Like him or not, Marcus Evans has delivered this time, signing Emyr Huws on a multi-million pound, four-year deal.

Ipswich Town have completed the signing of Cardiff City midfielder Emyr Huws in a multi-million pound deal, the Welshman signing a four-year contract.

Ipswich Town fans have been sharing their delight at the signing of number one transfer target Emyr Huws on social media.

Ipswich Town have revealed three changes to their fixtures next season - including pushing back both East Anglian derby games with Norwich City by 24 hours.

Ipswich Town manager Mick McCarthy is hoping imminent arrival Bersant Celina can make Ipswich Town fans forget about former loan star Tom Lawrence.

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