McCarthy: Why I have to ignore popular opinion when it comes to team selection

Mick McCarthy and Terry Connor

Mick McCarthy and Terry Connor

Ipswich Town manager Mick McCarthy says his proven track-record has given him the right to be single-minded with his team selections.

A growing number of supporters called for the Blues boss to make changes to his team – especially the back four – following last weekend’s 4-1 defeat at Middlesbrough.

McCarthy named the same outfield 10 players for the home game against Bolton three days later though and his side ground out a 1-0 win to remain hot-on-the-heels of sixth-place Brentford.

Pragmatic, loyal, straight-talking, stubborn and single-minded have all been adjectives associated with the Yorkshireman throughout a managerial career which has seen him take the Republic of Ireland to the last 16 of a World Cup and lead both Sunderland and Wolves to Championship titles.

Asked about the importance of rising above the opinion of fans and pundits, he said: “Strangely enough, I get fairly well paid to do this job and I’ve done it over a number of years – 23, I think.

“I get trusted in terms of running the team because I’d like to think I’ve been half-decent at it over a period of time.

“I’ve got TC (assistant Terry Connor) in my office and he’s my trusted lieutenant. I bounce things off him.

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“But if I listened to everybody... Well, if you form a committee to design a horse, that’s how you get the camel.

“I’m not akin to taking any notice of what people say because if I asked you all in here to pick a team you’d all give me a different one and an opinion on why you’d do it.

“You have to be single-minded, you have to trust in what you do and the way you do it and have belief in it.”

On Connor, McCarthy joked: “He’s not just a ‘yes’ man. He says no when I say no as well! I’m teasing. He gives his opinion, and rightly so, because of his experience. Two heads are better than one, it’s just that one of them makes the final decision.”

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