Ipswich Town mail bag: ‘I fear League One would be around corner without Mick’
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Ipswich Town are seemingly heading for a 17th successive season in the Championship. Blues fans have been sending in their thoughts via e-mail.
I am a lifelong Town fan, 54 years old, born in Ipswich, living the last 18 years in North Nottinghamshire. I see two or three home games a year, but always pick up away games in the East Midlands and South Yorkshire. I also listen to all games on the internet.
I have seen the glory days and the lean times and stayed faithful to the club through it all. I couldn’t imagine doing anything else. Here are my humble thoughts...
I guess my views go against the grain at the moment of those who are calling for Mick McCarthy to go. It would seem an end of season departure is the likely outcome for him, but if this were to happen I would be fearful of where this would lead us.
Clearly any new manager will have no money to spend, be expected to play attractive football and be in or around the top six every season and ultimately gaining promotion to the promised land.
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Do you know any manager up to the task? Who is shrewder in the loan market or with free transfers than Mick? Bart, Celina, Waghorn, Garner this season and we can go back to Ryan Fraser and Tom Lawrence too. How does he keep on finding them? Can a replacement do any better? Roy Keane and Paul Jewell didn’t manage it.
How Mick has held the dressing room together throughout his tenure has shown the relationship he has with the players. Few managers have been able to do that for so long.
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So must we conclude it is Marcus Evans’ fault? No. I love the club very much, but I wouldn’t pump millions of pounds in to only be told it is nowhere near enough and be loathed by many of the fans.
People complain he is anonymous and that we do not hear from him. This is true. But sadly football is full of chairmen with massive egos that constantly need massaging. I have friends who support Forest, Derby, Leeds and Sheffield Wednesday. I wouldn’t swap places with them. These clubs spend ridiculous amounts of money, sack the manager on a regular basis and get nowhere.
So am I saying we should all be satisfied with what we have and stop moaning? Of course not.
The Championship is a fantastic league to be in. On any given day anyone can beat anyone. It is always surprising. Look at Hull and Sunderland this season. Who would have thought it? Or Huddersfield getting promoted last year.
Promotion to the Premiership would be amazing. However, seeing many clubs losing most games and having a party when they finish 17th, until the next season, is surely not the greatest of fun.
So should we not be ambitious? Of course we should. But we need to do it the right way. We have some great young players coming through. I thought (Flynn) Downes and (Tristan) Nydam were great early in the season. I am frustrated Downes has been sent on loan. But I trust in Mick. He knows better than me.
We have the best keeper outside the Premier League. We have better forwards than we have had for a long time and Mick has been prepared to play them altogether. We have talent long-term injured.
You see it is fine margins between mid-table mediocrity or play-offs. We did not break the bank to buy Daryl Murphy when he shot us to the play-offs. Mick changed an ordinary player used out of his best position and turned him into a goal machine for one season.
Of course money helps but it is a long, long way from being the answer.
I accept Mick will be going and I will be fully behind the new manager. But I would fear for the future and that League One would be just around the corner.
Come on you Blues!
I’m just reading yet another futile ITFC article: ‘Time to hear from the man at the very top’.
Marcus Evans spent heavily when he arrived at Ipswich with a belief he could get promotion and that his investment would be repaid.
This didn’t happen for various reasons what we’re seeing now is his effort to claw back that investment. Any player worth anything is promptly sold and not properly replaced.
There’s only one way for all of us suffering ITFC supporters to get our voices heard... Don’t buy a season ticket. And if the thought of not having a season ticket frightens you, then remember you can still buy the occasional ticket and go.
At last we seem to have a player that has real pace. (Mustapha) Carayol’s goal against Preston was all about that. Sure it was a clinical finish, but it was his speed that got him there.
With the mainly defensive set-up we often employ we can only really trouble opposition defences with pace on the break. Carayol showed up well when he came on against Burton also. Let’s hope he can keep it up. It may get us off our seats now and again.
As an ardent football fan (ever since watching Stanley Matthews in the 1953 Cup Final), I go to Portman Road about once a month.
I have just one thing to say about Mick’s ‘I won’t be driven out by a small section of fans’ comment. It’s not the ‘small section of (vocal) fans’ that he needs to worry about. He needs to look at the bigger picture and those who vote with their feet!
The number of spectators has dropped from 23,000 down to 13,000. As a retired accountant that’s a 43% drop! Mr Evans is a businessman so if this continues what is his next step? Is he happy to keep losing money? I haven’t met any business men yet who would be.
So the next step is possibly the wage bill. If he cuts that then the best players will leave and before long I will be watching Ipswich v Rochdale (no disrespects to Rochdale).
I can almost hear what the players are saying to each other now on the pitch so if this comes about will I be able to hear what they are thinking?
A concerned observer!
John M Snell