Bishop ready for role of super sub, while McCarthy will put arm around Sears
- Credit: �INPHO/Ryan Byrne
Fit-again Teddy Bishop is ready to play the role of super sub for Ipswich Town, says boss Mick McCarthy.
The homegrown midfielder burst on the scene as an 18-year-old two-and-a-half years ago and played a key role as the Blues booked a play-off place in 2014/15.
A whole host of muscle injuries have limited him to just nine starts and 15 substitute appearances since then, but he’s finally back in the first team fold after recovering from groin surgery and playing 45 minutes for the Under-23s.
“He’s not ready to start, but he could have an impact coming on in a game that’s for sure,” revealed McCarthy, speaking ahead of tomorrow’s Championship game at Aston Villa.
“Starting, no chance. I tell a lie – of course he could start – but how long he can last is another matter.
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“I would much prefer to put him on as a sub where he can have an impact with his pace and his ability, than wearing him out with all that work you have to do in Championship games to stay in them sometimes.
“But yes, he could have an impact.”
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He continued: “I’m not having to hold him back because he’s not ready. He’s (just) not ready to play a full game.
“He looks really good in training but he’s not breaking my door down to tell me ‘gaffer, I’m ready to play 90 minutes’ because I know he’s not.
“We are not even halfway through the season and if we can nurse him along so that, if it was the second half of the season, he was ready then that would be brilliant.
“I don’t want him coming in and playing 60 minutes and then having a calf or a hammy or something like that.
“I’m not having to hold him back because he’s bashing my door down by any stretch of the imagination but he’d love to play.”
Meanwhile, McCarthy says he’ll put an arm around Freddie Sears. The striker, used primarily as a sub of late, has now netted just nine goals in 99 games after spurning a decent opportunity in Wednesday night’s 2-2 home draw with Sheffield Wednesday.
“He was at full tilt when he took the ball round the goalkeeper,” said McCarthy. “Maybe he could have picked Bersant (Celina) out, but he wants to score.
“I’m sure he needs a goal but, like I said with Joe (Garner), we really appreciate what he does. It’s the same with Freddie.
“I’ve been there as a player. Billy McNeill (Manchester City manager) didn’t try to give me advice all the time and just left the arm around my shoulder and gave me confidence.”