Ipswich Town boss Mick McCarthy appears resigned to not landing a striker ahead of tomorrow’s 11pm transfer deadline

Marley Watkins has reportedly had a transfer request rejected by Barnsley

Marley Watkins has reportedly had a transfer request rejected by Barnsley - Credit: PA Archive/PA Images

Ipswich Town manager Mick McCarthy appears resigned to not landing a multi-million pound striker ahead of tomorrow’s 11pm transfer deadline.

The Blues boss was keen to sign a replacement for Daryl Murphy, sold to Newcastle for £3m days before the summer window shut, as soon as the January window opened.

McCarthy – who has been able to make five low-budget additions this month in Jordan Spence, Steven Taylor (both free agents), Toumani Diagouraga (Leeds, loan), Danny Rowe (Macclesfield, £100k) and Kieffer Moore (Forest Green, £10k) – claims the club has lodged numerous seven-figure plus bids for strikers this month, but all have been rejected.

It’s understood the Blues have been keen on Preston’s Jordan Hugill, Barnsley’s Marley Watkins and Rotherham’s Danny Ward.

Asked if a striker signing was likely, he replied: “Possibly, we’re still trying, but as I said right at the very start (of the window) it was going to be difficult and that’s just the way it’s proving to be. The only feedback we’ve had is ‘no’.”

Asked if he had given up on signing Hugill, he replied: “I think they gave up on us, actually. They are just not selling him.”

Having had four months to line up a Murphy replacement, would he be disappointed if it didn’t happen?

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“I face reality, I’m pragmatic about it,” replied McCarthy. “I don’t get all that being disappointed and moaning. I get on with what I’ve got and get the best out of them rather than thinking ‘I wish I had more’.

“If we don’t sign one then we’ll crack on and work with what we’ve got, as I’ve always done pretty successfully.”

Town host Derby in a Championship match tomorrow night (7.45pm).

“That won’t affect it at all,” said McCarthy. “I pick them out, pass the list on and other people try to do all that stuff.

“I can’t wait until February first so I can go back on the drink and stop taking phone calls from people offering me players that I don’t want and have never heard of. It’ll be nice to get back to a bit of normality.”

McCarthy says he hasn’t heard from Coventry City – bottom of League One – regarding their reported interest in Jonathan Douglas, but says he would be happy to speak to Sky Blues boss Russell Slade.

Asked if jettisoned striker Leon Best might depart, the Blues boss said: “No, I doubt it. He’s got to have a little groin operation.”