Christophe Berra believes Ipswich Town punched above their weight in the past
Christophe Berra says the Blues have punched above their weight in recent seasons, as Mick McCarthy’s men contemplate being dragged into a Championship relegation battle.
Town are unbeaten in eight games, but have drawn their last six, dropping crucial points, and are too close for comfort in 16th position, seven points outside the bottom three.
Ipswich head to Cardiff City on Saturday, having generally failed to hit the standards set in manager Mick McCarthy’s first two-and-a-half seasons in charge.
Asked if the Blues were in a relegation battle, Berra (32), said: “It looks like that on the table – seven points is not that big a gap.
“But then we are only two points off Brentford (14th) and three off Cardiff (13th) so two or three more wins will maybe ease things a bit.”
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Berra joined the club in the summer of 2013 and after helping the Blues to a ninth-placed finish during his first season at the club, played an integral role as McCarthy’s men reached the play-off semi-finals a year later.
Since then, things haven’t gone according to plan and after failing to kick-on last season, Town currently languish in the bottom half of the table, having relied far too heavily on the talent and goals of Leicester City loan forward, Tom Lawrence.
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“It’s been inconsistent and not been up to the standard we have set in previous years, but that’s football,” explained Berra.
“And let’s be honest, we have not made the most investment, so things can happen and teams around us have maybe done a little bit more and kicked on a little bit, while the league has got tougher
“Then again, the last two or three seasons we have punched above our weight and set our expectations very high.”
Town are currently 17 points off the top-six and are facing a 16th consecutive season in the second-tier of English football.
Asked if this season was a missed opportunity, Berra argued: “I think that’s disrespectful to other teams; Do you think other teams will look at Ipswich and say they have great players? I don’t think so.
“It’s fine margins and teams like QPR and Cardiff have spent a lot of money and they’re down there as well.
“That’s the competitive nature of the league, every game is tough.”
• Mick McCarthy said yesterday that transfer rumours are not helping the team’s progress. See more here