Time to embrace a ‘dogs of war’ mentality

David McGoldrick

David McGoldrick - Credit: Archant

It’s time to embrace the ‘dogs of war’ mentality.

That tag was originally bestowed upon Everton’s unfashionable FA Cup winning side of 1995 – and it could easily be applied to the current Ipswich Town team that is battling to avoid Championship relegation.

Ironically, it was the manager of the aforementioned Toffees team, Joe Royle, that last produced free-flowing, top-six football at Portman Road

And while many Blues fans were left yearning for such easy-on-the-eye fare after watching Watford pass their team off the park in a 2-0 home defeat on Tuesday night, the current crop of players at the club make no apologies for buying into Mick McCarthy’s ‘hard-to-beat’ ethos.

“Right now it’s all about getting safe,” said striker David McGoldrick, who has scored one goal in eight appearances since signing for the club. “We’ve all got to sacrifice our own personal performances for the good of the team.

“I’d obviously have liked to have got a few more goals, but what’s more important is the results.

“We aren’t going to play football like Watford, nice one-touch, two-touch passing football, it’s going to be dogged performances. We’ve just got to roll our sleeves up and get the points that are required to stay up.

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“I’m doing a little job of dropping back in and helping the midfield out. Against Watford they had a man sitting in front of the defence and I was just trying to get around him. Doing the dirty work is what the manager wants me to do.”

Tomorrow, Town play at a Huddersfield side who are just a point below them in the congested bottom half of the table. The Terriers have won just one of their last 16 league games and were thumped 6-1 at Nottingham Forest on Tuesday night in what was new manager Mark Robins’ first league game in charge.

“I think if we keep playing the way we have been then the points will keep coming,” said McGoldrick.

“We’re a hard team to play against. It’s not pretty, but Blackpool were averaging three goals a game and they came here and barely had a shot last weekend (1-0 Town win).

“When you’re at the bottom you’ve got to defend from the front and make it hard for the opposition to pass the ball.

“It’s horrible playing against teams like us who hassle you and close you down. I spoke to one of the Blackpool players after the game on Saturday and he said that the wingers were complaining that they were being doubled up on. Once they got past one there was always another one there.

“We’ve proved that we can get wins – I think we’ve got 31 points since the gaffer’s come in. We’ve just got to keep going with this approach.”

– See today’s Ipswich Star for full match preview.