Manager deserves the credit - McAuley
GARETH McAuley stressed today that it is manager Paul Jewell who deserves credit for the recent transformation that has occurred at Portman Road.
Since Jewell replaced Roy Keane early last month Ipswich Town have gone from relegation candidates to outside play-off contenders.
They face Hull City at home today (kick-off 3pm) with senior player and key performer McAuley not only confirming his desire to agree a new contract but also revealing how happy the squad has become with 13 points from the last five games.
“It is the manager who deserves a pat on the back,” said central defender McAuley.
“He came in and in his first week grabbed the situation by the scruff of the neck.
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“Every player has been lifted by the manager and his staff and although we may have enjoyed a bit of good fortune we have earned that by the hard work put in on the training ground.”
McAuley hinted at the time of Keane’s departure that not every player was putting in a full shift every game.
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“The Press were on the back of the previous manager and the lads felt that maybe he was going maybe he wasn’t.
“And perhaps some came off the pace a bit with poor results costing the former manager his job.
“A new manager came in with a clean sheet and everybody wanted to do well.
“The most important thing is that we are all enjoying it and the atmosphere is great.
“There was always spirit in the camp and togetherness, but that is even tighter now.
“We have a laugh and get on, but we are also working hard.”
When asked how differently Ipswich are playing now to six weeks ago, McAuley explained:
“We’re looking to play higher up the field with our full backs pushed in more.
“If we can defend on the half-way line it keeps our opponents under pressure more.
“We’re playing more on the front foot and defending from the front.”
And confirming that he wants to sign a new Town contract to replace his current one that runs out on June 30, McAuley added:
“I’m quite comfortable with the way things are.
“I spoke to the gaffer and we had a good chat about things, and we are both comfortable with the situation.
“I said that I will keep him in the picture, if I hear anything, and that sort of thing.
“The way it is, I want to stay here and I want to play my football here.
“I see good times ahead for the club and that’s pretty much it for the minute, until something happens.”