By Stuart Watson
Friday, November 30, 2012
Bolton v Ipswich: Blues boss Mick McCarthy knows his side will have to be at their best to get something at improving Bolton Wanderers tomorrow.
Town have taken 10 points from a possible 18 since McCarthy took over at the start of the month, with Tuesday night’s impressive 3-1 home win over Nottingham Forest lifting them out of the Championship relegation zone.
The Blues have been thrashed in their last two away games though – 5-0 at Crystal Palace and 6-0 at Leicester.
And although Bolton may only be 17th in the table, they look to have to out their relegation hangover behind them. Unbeaten during Dougie Freedman’s first six games in charge, the Trotters were comfortable 2-1 winners at Blackburn on Wednesday night.
“I think they have a squad that should be up in the play-offs at least,” said McCarthy. “I really think they have good players and they didn’t lose many when they dropped out of the Premier League.
“Dougie has gone in, after doing a great job at Crystal Palace. Not everything has just turned to gold for him, but it doesn’t. He got the job because someone else lost it because of poor results.
“He took Lennie Lawrence with him and Curtis Fleming, who is well thought of. He has got his staff – and we all like our own staff around us. It makes us better. “They had a great result beating Blackburn and it sets it up nicely.” He continued: “He has got a really good squad of players – probably one of the best squads in the division. The bump from relegation is a particularly hard landing, let me tell you. It is how the players react, the problem is a lot of the players want to leave. Despite the fact, they have got the club relegated, along with the manager and staff, they decide they want to up sticks and go because they have decided they don’t want to play in the Championship. It takes you a while to change that mindset and looking at Blackburn, Wolves and Bolton, that has been the case.
“That result against Blackburn, I hope it is not setting them up for a good run.”
He added: “If we play like we did against Forest, we will be fine. We may not win the game, because they might be brilliant, you can’t tell. But would I settle for that performance again? All day long, I thought we were very good.”
– See today’s Ipswich Star and tomorrow’s EADT for a full match preview.