McCarthy: We’ve got the goal-den touch

The Sky Bet Championship
Ipswich Town v Leeds United - Portman Road, Ipswich - 6 Dec 2014

The Sky Bet Championship Ipswich Town v Leeds United - Portman Road, Ipswich - 6 Dec 2014 Ipswich Town manager Mick McCarthy (left) keeps a close eye on the game - Credit: Ashley Pickering

No matter how good or bad they are playing, Ipswich Town boss Mick McCarthy always expects his team to score.

The second-place Blues take on Bolton Wanderers at The Macron Stadium this afternoon, a team unbeaten in five and looking rejuvenated under new boss Neil Lennon.

It’s another major test of the in-form Suffolk side’s promotion credentials, but – however the game pans out – you have to fancy the visitors to score at some stage given the statistics.

Since the 1-0 home loss to Norwich on August 23, Town have scored in 16 successive games. They have drawn a blank just nine times in 46 games this calendar year.

In the last two away games – Bournemouth and Charlton – they were outplayed at times, but always remained a threat from a direct ball, cross into the box or set-piece and, as a result, secured a 2-2 draw and 1-0 win respectively.

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“We are a goal threat,” said McCarthy. “I can’t remember a game where we’ve not had chances. I never sit there thinking ‘where’s a goal coming from today?’ If we’re not playing well we will get a set-piece and get a chance from something.”

Daryl Murphy is the Championship’s leading scorer with 13, while his strike partner David McGoldrick – on six – is looking back to his best following a long-term knee injury. Then there’s the prolific centre-half duo of Christophe Berra and Tommy Smith, who have scored 18 between them in the last 18 months.

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“I think the midfielders are saving them up for the second half of the season!” laughed McCarthy, referring to the distinct lack of goals from central players and wingers. “I would like them to be getting more, but I’m not too worried as long as we’re getting goals from somewhere.”

He added: “I hope when the opposition are studying the DVDs of our games they see our front two and think ‘how are we going to deal with that?’”

– See today’s EADT for full match preview. Follow @Stuart_Watson on twitter for live match updates.

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