Nothing lifts you more than a victory, says Ipswich Town boss Mick McCarthy
- Credit: Picture: Steve Waller
Nothing beats the sheer joy of winning.
Ipswich Town boss Mick McCarthy is a firm believer that it’s victories, not impressive performances, which give players confidence.
The Blues take on fourth-place Brighton at The Amex Stadium this evening (7.45pm ko) then travel to fifth-place Burnley on Saturday.
Not so long ago those two games looked a very daunting prospect indeed. Town had played reasonably well against both Middlesbrough and Derby at home but finished up empty-handed on both occasions.
By contrast, Ipswich played poorly in their Boxing Day home game against QPR but still managed to come-from-behind and snatch a stoppage-time winner.
The game itself won’t live long in the memory, but the scenes following Luke Chambers’ goal certainly will.
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That’s now six wins from nine for the Suffolk club. To put that into context, Brighton and Burnley have only just about managed that between them (three wins each) in the last 10.
“It’s all about results, not about performances and who played well and who didn’t,” said McCarthy. “Had we lost, or even drawn against QPR, we’d have been going down to Brighton feeling nowhere near as good about ourselves as we are now.
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“On Saturday we won and that will go down on record and in the history books. All the reports will be fish and chip paper at some stage.
“We’re in the top six and a win like the one we have just had really has a good effect on you mentally and emotionally.”
Brighton have undoubtedly been the surprise success story in the first half of this Championship campaign.
Having finished 20th last season, just six points above the relegation zone, the Seagulls have been transformed by new boss Chris Hughton.
Remarkably, the south coast outfit – who won 3-2 at Portman Road back in August – remained undefeated until December 19, when they lost 3-0 to Middlesbrough at home.
It’s the sheer number of draws – 11 altogether – which has seen them drop out of the automatic promotion places though. Indeed, they have now won just five of their last 16 in all competitions.
“I don’t think they were a bad squad of players last year,” said McCarthy. “They’ve changed their manager and Chris (Hughton) has that stabilising effect on a club and a team. He gets the best out of people and just creates a really hard team to play against and beat.”
– See today’s EADT and Ipswich Star for full match preview.