Ipswich Town’s squad can cope with Championship demands, says Mick McCarthy

Paul Anderson

Paul Anderson - Credit: Archant

They didn’t cover themselves in glory at Stevenage, but Mick McCarthy has backed his threadbare Ipswich Town squad to cope with the demands of the Championship.

A much-changed team from the one that put in an encouraging performance during the opening day defeat at Reading, featured in Tuesday’s Capital One Cup defeat, and faces from that line-up could start Saturday’s clash with Millwall at Portman Road.

The likes of Dean Gerken, Frederic Veseli, Frank Nouble and Paul Taylor are likely to return to the bench after their Broadhall Way outings, but Paul Anderson and Christophe Berra could make their first league starts for the Blues.

That is because of the injury crisis building on the left-hand side of the team – Jay Tabb (shoulder) joining left-backs Aaron Cresswell (thigh), Tyrone Mings (knee), Anthony Wordsworth (calf) and Jack Doherty (ankle) on the treatment table.

McCarthy is also considering a swoop in the loan market, but should he fail to make inroads, he will be happy to stick with what he has.

“We have got 22 players, 22 good players, 22 Championship players,” said McCarthy, who confirmed Cresswell was returning to training this morning.

“They are good enough to cope with the league and then after that we have a crop of youngsters and we don’t know how they will do until they get their chance.

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“We have healthy competition.”

Meanwhile, McCarthy has revealed he is pleased with the progress that Taylor is making.

Last season’s big-money signing made his first start for the club in 11 months on Tuesday, following a lengthy spell out with an ankle injury, and is slowly stepping up towards full fitness.

“Tayls is doing ok but that outing he got on Saturday (at Reading) was different to the few minutes he got in the friendly at Colchester,” said McCarthy, before Tuesday night’s game.

“There (at Reading) you had two teams that were going for it hammer and tongs and that is the level we have got to get him to.”