Mick McCarthy challenges Teddy Bishop to win his place back in the Ipswich Town team
Ipswich Town boss Mick McCarthy has challenged Teddy Bishop to win back his place in the team.
The classy 20-year-old midfielder burst on the scene in 2014 and was linked with a host of Premier League clubs after playing a key role in the Blues’ top-six finish.
Various injuries saw him sidelined for the entirety of 2015/16 though and he’s subsequently been limited to just six starts and 13 substitute appearances this campaign, with only two brief cameo displays since the turn of the year.
“He’s got to get in the team,” said McCarthy, who revealed the Cambridge-based youth team graduate has a tight groin at present.
“I’ve been asked about how players have responded to not being in the team. I think everybody here had to ask themselves what they were doing when things weren’t going well.
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“I asked myself ‘what can I do better to improve results?’ and the players needed to ask themselves ‘what am I contributing to the team in terms of creating goals, scoring goals…’
“That’s everybody that needed to do that, prior to this turnaround, and Bish is one of those. Has he scored one, has he created one? Dougie (Jonathan Douglas) has had two in the net which were wrongly disallowed.”
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With Emyr Huws, Cole Skuse, Grant Ward and Toumani Diagouraga the four players battling it out for three central midfield slots at present, McCarthy added: “I love him (Bishop) as a kid and a player, but he’s got to get in the team. It’s only him that can do that.”
Homegrown full-backs Josh Emmanuel and Myles Kenlock have enjoyed plenty of game-time recently, but McCarthy says the young duo will be carefully managed over the remaining 12 games of the season.
Emmanuel has rotated with Jordan Spence, while Kenlock was substituted in the second half of Sunday’s 1-1 draw at Norwich.
“We’ve got three games coming up in a week and I think that wing-back role is a tough one,” he said. “It’s nice now that I’ve got options if I want to change.
“Myles has been great. On Sunday, it just got tough for him, physically, I think.
“The two young lads have both done really well. I’ve asked them both if they thought they would have played as much as many games as they have. Of course they both said ‘we hoped we would’, but hoping is one thing, expecting is another. They both look like first-team players now.”