MANAGER’S REACTION: Mick McCarthy glad he didn’t let Michael Chopra leave on loan

Ipswich v Blackpool: MICK McCarthy hailed match-winner Michael Chopra after the substitute’s goal sealed his side a ‘massive’ three points this afternoon.

The controversial striker has found himself way down the pecking order of late and received criticism from Blues supporters recently after being found guilty of fixing charges by the British Horseracing Authority and then posting a picture of a bagful of cash on his Twitter account.

He received a mixed reception from the Portman Road faithful when replacing the injured Anthony Wordsworth just 35 minutes into this afternoon’s match before scoring a fantatsic goal just four minutes into the second half.

That goal proved the difference, with Town moving up to 18th-place and going four points clear of the drop zone ahead of Tuesday night’s visit of Watford.

“A few clubs made enquiries about taking him on loan last month, but I decided we needed him,” revealed McCarthy. “This week we’ve only had 14 players that are contracted to us training, so there was never any chance of me letting him go out – the same with (Jay) Emmanuel-Thomas.

“It looks like a good decision now doesn’t it? An even better one to put him on today!

“It was the one real bit of quality in the whole game. From the timing of his run, to getting across the defender (Alex Baptiste) and holding him off to actually finishing it with his weaker foot with the defender all over him and the keeper narrowing the angle. It was a real bit of quality.

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“He’s a good player and I might have been a bit unfair to him recently. He scores his goals, but I’m equally pleased with the way he went about his job today. He worked hard and stopped them playing from the back.

“We’ve spoken, of course, but that was a while ago and he’s just kept his head down. He’s been a good member of the squad.”

The Blues boss, who looked emotionally exhausted in the post-match press conference, continued: “It was a horrible, scrappy, scruffy, magnificent 1-0 win. That’s what it was.

“I said yesterday I’m not bothered how we get them, as long as we get the points. That’s a massive three points from us.

“I’ll take those sort of results all day long. Our effort was epitomised by big Frank (Nouble) coming on and working his socks off. He stopped them from the front and then blocked it on the line when someone got free.

“We need everyone to play their part.”

Meanwhile, McCarthy confirmed that Anthony Wordsworth – who made his first start for the club following his January switch from Colchester – has gone to hospital following his collision with keeper Matt Gilks in the first half.

“He’s having a great time on gas and air in the physio’s room at the moment,” said the Blues boss. “It’s probably the best time he’s had without a drink I would think!

“He’s obviously in pain but it doesn’t look that way at the moment. He’s got a bang around the kidney area around the back.

“He’ll be a really good player for us Woody. It’s shame if he’s out for a length of time.”

Daryl Murphy also took a late knock, with the Blues hosting Watford on Tuesday night.

– See Monday’s EADT and Ipswich Star for match analysis, comment and more reaction.

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