Ipswich Town will be ready to pounce if others collapse under the weight of expectation, says Cole Skuse

Sky Bet ChampionshipIpswich Town v Barnsley - Portman Road, Ipswich - 1 Nov 2013Ipswich Town's

Sky Bet Championship Ipswich Town v Barnsley - Portman Road, Ipswich - 1 Nov 2013 Ipswich Town's Cole Skuse

Ipswich Town will be ready to pounce if others falter under heavy expectations in the second half of the season.

So says midfielder Cole Skuse ahead of a trio of festive fixtures which, on paper, all look very winnable for a Blues side gathering some real momentum.

Saturday’s 1-1 home draw with Watford extended the unbeaten streak to five and kept Mick McCarthy’s side just three points adrift of the play-off places heading into a Boxing Day game at Doncaster (20th in the table), a trip to Bournemouth (15th) three days later, followed by the visit of Charlton (21st) on New Year’s Day.

“We’re quietly going about our business,” said Skuse.

“Nobody is giving us the raves that we probably deserve, but we’re right in the mix and it’s a nice place to be.

“It’s been a hard couple of seasons for myself and couple of the other boys who have joined from clubs that were having to dig in against relegation in recent years, so to be three points off the play-offs is a nice place to be.

“I don’t think we are under any real pressure. We’ve got our own expectations and I’m sure the fans and the club have, but I’ve not felt any real pressure.

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“If you’re a club that’s just been relegated – a QPR or a Wigan – then you’re under instant pressure to bounce straight back. Pressure can get to teams like that towards the end.

“We weren’t the bookies favourites to go up, so we’re happy to keep flying under the radar. We’ll just keep ourselves in the mix and be ready to take advantage if one or two start slipping up.

“We’ve looked at these next three games and thought this is a great opportunity. We’re looking to get nine points.”

Skuse, who has started every match since arriving on a Bosman-free transfer from Bristol City in the summer, added: “I feel like I’m doing okay. I’ve settled in really well; it’s a lovely area, I love the club and the lads are brilliant.

“I feel as if I’ve been here three or four seasons rather than four or five months. I’m really enjoying my football and it helps that we’re getting results.”