Ipswich Town 1 Bristol City 3 reaction: Mick McCarthy didn't foresee flat display
PUBLISHED: 18:24 30 September 2017 | UPDATED: 18:49 30 September 2017
© Copyright Stephen Waller
Ipswich Town manager Mick McCarthy admits he didn't see such a flat performance coming from his side following this afternoon's 3-1 home defeat to Bristol City.
Following a swashbuckling 5-2 dismantling of struggling Sunderland on Suffolk soil in midweek, Town were flat and disjointed four days later and had no answers to the organised and lively Robins.
Josh Brownhill’s heavily-deflected opener came in the second minute, Famara Diedhiou doubled the lead with a header (31) and even though Martyn Waghorn pulled one back just before half-time (41) Town never looked like mounting a comeback before Bobby Reid wrapped things up with another deflected strike (82).
Bristol City are now unbeaten in 11 games across all competitions and up to fifth in the Championship, with Town slipping to eighth heading into the international break.
“I can’t sit here and say overall in the game we were unlucky, because they deserved to win the game and were better than us, but we were unlucky with two of the goals we’ve conceded,” said McCarthy.
“Going behind after two minutes knocked the wind out of our sails. They are a good team, they played very well, but it helps to be that good team if you get a goal after three minutes. It meant we weren’t really able to get a foothold in the game.
“I thought we were a threat in the first half and not so much in the second. They handled it particularly well. They sat it on the halfway line and looked to catch us. And they haven’t conceded that many goals.”
Asked if an all-action display in midweek had taken it out of his players, the Blues boss replied: “I’ve had pretty much 16 players to work with and they all put a shift in every week. I admire them all for that. Tuesday night did take something out of them, but I didn’t foresee that coming. I wasn’t looking at them thinking they were tired.
“As I say, goals do change momentum in games. We got one early on Tuesday and they got one after three minutes today.”
McCarthy had named an unchanged side, but was forced to replace midfielder Tom Adeyemi with teenager Tristan Nydam after the former ‘nicked his hamstring’ in the warm-up.
“It didn’t help,” said McCarthy. “That’s not detrimental to Tristan, because he played very well, but we’d played really well with Tom in the team.
“Everybody was disappointed to lose him, but I’m not going to blame that.”
There was also a concern to see David McGoldrick leave the field gingerly in the second half.
“He’s got a tight hamstring,” revealed the Blues boss. “I asked him five minutes before and he said he was alright, but I didn’t think he was and then he said he couldn’t carry on.
“He’s in the Ireland squad and I’m sure they’ll assess him. The last thing I need is for him to go away with them and get injured. We can’t afford any more injuries, certainly not to him with the way he’s been playing.”
With Town having won six and lost four, McCarthy was asked for this 10-game assessment.
“Would I have taken it? Yes, I’d have taken 18 points,” he replied. “I’m under no illusions that our wins have come against the teams down the bottom – Barnsley (18th), Brentford (20th), Bolton (24th), Sunderland (23rd), Millwall (13th) and Birmingham (22nd). Maybe they are beneath us for a reason.
“We lost to Fulham quite badly, today wasn’t as bad, we lost to QPR and we lost to Leeds, but played well there.
“Overall we’ve had a good couple of months and played well in the games. My assessment is we’ve given too many goals away (16).
“We can’t do much about two of the goals conceded today, but some of the others we’ve conceded over the last few weeks we can. We’ve got to do better. That’s something to work on.
“I’m sure it will help when Webbo (Adam Webster) is back. It was nice to see him back today (came on at half-time), although he looked a bit ring-rusty. Plus we’ve got Tommy Smith to come back too.”
Town return to action in a fortnight at third-place Sheffield United.