MANAGER’S REACTION: Playing well and getting nothing is not my idea of fun, says McCarthy
QPR v Ipswich: Town boss Mick McCarthy admits he will reflect on the positives comes Monday morning, but right now he and his players are feeling sore about a last-minute 1-0 defeat at QPR.
Just like in the 2-1 defeat at Reading on the opening day of the season, the Blues proved more than a match for a recently relegated side and looked for a long time like they would take a share of the spoils.
QPR sub Tom Hitchcock grabbed a winner in the very last minute though, the home side finally getting a breakthrough after both Clint Hill and Charlie Austin had hit the face of the bar in the second period.
QPR assistant boss Kevin Bond said he felt like it was going to be ‘one of those days’ for his side after Austin missed his 78th minute gilt-edged chance, with the second half having been one-way traffic for the hosts.
McCarthy felt that statement was unjust though, instead pointing to the fantastic save that Rob Green made from Daryl Murphy in an enthralling and very even opening period.
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Asked if he felt the winner had been coming, he replied: “Did I heck. We just didn’t do enough in the 90th minute.
“I’m sure he (Bond) didn’t feel like it was ‘going to be one of those days’ when Green pulled that save off from Murphy and we were having chance-after-chance in an even game.
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“I don’t think they should have beaten us. It was a good performance and I thought it was going to be a really good point, but we just didn’t defend in the last minute.”
With a 3-0 home win over Millwall having come in between narrow one-goal defeats at the two promotion favourites, McCarthy knows there are positives to take from his side’s start to the campaign.
But right now that is of little consolation.
“That’s on Monday morning when you reflect and say you’re pleased with the performance,” said the Blues boss. “But we’ve been beaten and right now I’m disappointed that we’ve got diddly squat to show for our efforts.
“Playing well and getting nothing is not my idea of fun.
“They were better than us in the second half, but we were certainly even to them in the first half.
“If you’re looking for yardsticks in terms of performance then both games (against Reading and QPR) have been pretty good, but if we want to contest top six then ‘pretty good’ has got to become ‘good’.
“We should have got a point at Reading and we should have got a point here.”
He added: “The platers are bitterly disappointed, as you’d expect them to be.
“We need to be a team that progresses and does better. I want these games to be 0-0, I want us to be taking a point – and we haven’t got one today.
“There’s no point saying ‘well played’ when you’ve got diddly to show for it.”
Meanwhile, McCarthy confirmed that Cole Skuse had to come off at half-time with an Achilles injury, while Paul Taylor’s withdrawal after 86 minutes – having only come on himself just after the hour – was purely tactical.
“Cole jarred his Achilles,” said McCarthy. “I hope he’s okay because he was excellent again.
“I thought Tunners (Ryan Tunnicliffe) did well, but we don’t want to be losing players – we’ve only got 20.
“There was no injury at all to Paul Taylor. I put my faith and trust in him to go on thinking he was ready, but I don’t think he is ready yet. We’re trying to get him fit still.
“I thought he could have been the difference because he’s got that ability, but we were having to defend and Frank (Nouble) is bigger than him and could defend corners and free-kicks better than him.
“I haven’t explained it to him because it’s straight after the game and he’s feeling sore about it. Now’s not the time or place to do that. We’ll talk on Monday when things are calmer,
“It’s one of those he just has to accept.”
– See Monday’s EADT and Ipswich Star for match analysis, comment and more reaction.