Green shoots of recovery, but Ipswich Town still have plenty of rebuilding work to do

Ipswich Town boss Mick McCarthy watches his side win 5-0 at Drogheda United yesterday. Photo: �INPHO

Ipswich Town boss Mick McCarthy watches his side win 5-0 at Drogheda United yesterday. Photo: �INPHO/Ryan Byrne - Credit: �INPHO/Ryan Byrne

Baby steps in the right direction, a few green shoots of recovery – now it’s crucial Ipswich Town keep the momentum going.

Credit where credit is due, Blues owner Marcus Evans and manager Mick McCarthy have taken a step back and reassessed the situation following last season’s dire 16th place Championship finish.

McCarthy recognised that a stale squad needed a serious freshen up. Evans recognised that he was going to have to loosen the purse strings in order to remain competitive in the Championship.

Meanwhile, frustrated staff across all departments, led by managing director Ian Milne, have responded to accusations that the club has lost its community feel by putting a local charity on the shirts, reducing match day ticket prices and setting up a new fans’ panel to improve engagement with supporters.

Kick-starting pre-season with a comprehensive 5-0 win at Irish side Drogheda United yesterday saw the Blues equal their goal tally from all five of the friendly matches which set the tone heading into an inconsistent campaign lacking excitement. Perhaps things are changing.

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Well done on signing loan star midfielder Emyr Huws on a four-year deal from Cardiff. The Welshman simply fills his own void in the squad though.

Good job on signing box-to-box midfielder Tom Ademyemi and livewire striker Joe Garner. Those two should be significant upgrades on the departed Jonathan Douglas and Leon Best respectively.

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And congratulations of landing much-sought-after winger Bersant Celina on loan from Manchester City. Time will tell if he can fill Tom Lawrence’s big boots at Portman Road.

Ipswich Town can’t afford to slap themselves on the back just yet though.

Josh Emmanuel and Kieffer Moore are set to join League One side Rotherham United on loan, Kevin Bru has been told he can find another club, while it’s understood that Brett Pitman could move on too.

It’s too early to call this a ‘new-look squad’. There is still further rebuilding to do. Now is when the hard work really starts.

Time is a great healer. In two football-free months it’s not been hard to push the forgettable fare of 2016/17 to the dark recesses of our memories. A return to old ways at the start of August would quickly stir up anger and apathy again though. This is a major crossroads.

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