Mick McCarthy understands why Ipswich Town fans may be considering whether to renew season tickets
Ipswich Town boss Mick McCarthy fully understands why some supporters might be undecided whether to part with their hard-earned cash again when it comes to season ticket renewal time.
There was a real feelgood factor surrounding the Blues following the sixth-place finish of 2014/15, but 18 months of steady stagnation has followed.
The club saw around 1,000 fans not renew their season tickets last summer and another inspirational campaign could see even more turn their backs on Portman Road for what looks set to be a 16th successive season in the Championship.
Asked if he could understand why some supporters may be carefully considering whether to shell out for another year, McCarthy said: “Sure can, yeah. Sure can.”
So how important is it for his team to convince fans with some positive performances over these remaining five home games – starting with the visit of lowly Wolves tomorrow night?
You may also want to watch:
“You’re asking me questions I’ve already spoken about in the past – building relationships with fans,” he replied.
“I saw a BBC piece the other day and he said ‘Mick McCarthy says he is not bothered what people think of him’. What a complete untrue reflection of what I said.
- 1 Suffolk petrol stations avoid closure as garages shut nationwide
- 2 Don't panic buy - warning as queues form at petrol stations
- 3 Family of hairdresser, 17, who died in her sleep 'overwhelmed' by tributes
- 4 Explained: What is causing the long queues at petrol stations?
- 5 'We've lost one or two from last week' - Cook reveals fresh injury set-back
- 6 Jailed company boss to sell home to repay swindled customers
- 7 Road off A14 closed after serious collision
- 8 'Complete waste of our money' - uproar over Santa's grotto
- 9 Cook believes Ipswich are 'biggest and best' club in League One
- 10 Suffolk man arrested after motorcyclist killed in crash
“Yes, I said it, but I also went on to say I do want the fans to be proud of the club and the players. I extended what I said. It’s not about me and being personal.
“I don’t want to be walking up the track next year and there is only ten thousand fans for the first game of the season. If that’s a reflection on me, I don’t want that. I want the fans to be proud of the players, proud of the club and proud of their team they are supporting.
“The next few games are important in trying to persuade people to keep coming and paying their money. The only way you do that is by having a good team that wins games.”
Ipswich produced some far more positive performances in the recent games against Reading and Leeds at Portman Road, but it was a worryingly familiar non-event on Saturday as Brentford looked the better team in a lifeless 1-1 draw.
Town’s two last goals – Emyr Huws against the Bees and Jonas Knudsen at Norwich – have come at the end of lengthy, slick build-up though.
“That is how we train all the time,” said McCarthy. “That’s how we try to do it. It’s not easy when there is a team trying to stop you and you’re in front of everybody, but that is how we try to play.
“I think the shape of the team has helped us, with three in the middle of the park and two up front. Four-four-two wasn’t working. It’s given us the ability to keep hold of the ball. The new players, Emyr (Huws) and Toums (Toumani Diagouraga) have helped that too. Wardy (Grant Ward) has come in and been outstanding too.
“It please me that the fans enjoy it and see it. I don’t want them to come here and watch turgid and horrible football.”
He added: “They were right to be critical. We weren’t playing well and were losing. I’ve no problem with that, as I keep saying.
“That wasn’t because of what we were attempting to do or not attempting to do as the case may be.”