It won’t be pretty – Mick McCarthy warns Ipswich Town fans that entertaining football will have to wait

Mick McCarthy

Mick McCarthy - Credit: Archant

Ipswich v Blackpool: ENTERTAINING supporters is the last thing on manager Mick McCarthy’s mind heading into back-to-back games at Portman Road.

There has been a clamour among many fans for the Blues boss to add a few more creative and flair players into his starting line-up after a return of just one win from six at the start of the New Year has seen the side slip back to within a point of the Championship drop zone.

The likes of Anthony Wordsworth and Jay Emmanuel-Thomas are going to have to wait for the time being though as McCarthy sticks with his ethos of organisation, discipline and hard-work for the visits of attack-minded duo Blackpool (today) and Watford (Tuesday).

“We’re not in a position to suddenly change the way we play,” said the Blues boss, who is likely to stick with the workmanlike duo of Luke Hyam and Guirane N’Daw in the middle of midfield.

“The way we’ve played and the way we’ve approached things has got us into the position we’re in (out of the relegation zone having been five points adrift).

“It could be five wins that is needed over the last 15 games and it doesn’t matter how, or where, we get them.

“I’d settle for five, scrappy, horrible 1-0 wins with last-minute winners. When everybody is in the pub talking about the game afterwards I won’t mind if they are saying ‘we didn’t play well today, but we won’. That is the ‘but’ that I always want on the end of those conversations.

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“Hopefully we can eventually settle down and be free-flowing, but for now let’s just keep picking up points.

“I don’t think we’re in a position where we can be expansive and choosy about how we play.

“Of course we want to play well, have good performances and entertain, but first and foremost we want to stay in the league.”

With Blackpool set to be watched by manager-in-waiting Paul Ince – the former MK Dons and Blackburn boss still in the process of officially being appointed – Town could today climb towards the safety of mid-table or drop back into the relegation zone, depending on this afternoon’s events.

McCarthy added: “It doesn’t help when you’re near the bottom in terms of getting crowds in and having people turn up full of vigour and the joys of spring, ready to support the team. Our fans have come along and supported us, considering our position, in good numbers though.

“Long may that continue.”

– For a full match preview, including McCarthy’s thoughts on Blackpool, score predictions and analysis of key men, see today’s EADT.

– Follow @Stuart_Watson and @ChrisBramms on Twitter for live match updates.