Reaction: Mick McCarthy has his sights on a Bobby Robson record following victory at Brighton
- Credit: PA
Ipswich Town boss Mick McCarthy has his sights on beating a club record set by Sir Bobby Robson following tonight’s 1-0 win at Brighton & Hove Albion.
The Blues made it five away wins in a row courtesy of Daryl Murphy’s 32nd minute strike at The Amex Stadium – something that hasn’t happened since Mick Mills, Kevin Beattie and co achieved the feat in 1976.
A win at promotion rivals Burnley on Saturday – who are just one spot and one point above sixth-placed Town in the Championship – would become a stand alone record.
“I’ve just been told about that,” said McCarthy afterwards. “Did Bobby get six in a row? (told no). Well wouldn’t it be lovely to beat that on Saturday? I think that will be a tough ask though.”
Brighton were undefeated up until December 19, but – with a mounting injury list – they have now lost two of their last three matches.
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“We’ve managed to beat one of the big boys, one of the top six,” said McCarthy. “Our record against those teams hadn’t been good up until now.
“We beat Burnley but we caught them on the hop early on. Since then we’ve lost to Brighton, Derby, Middlesbrough and Hull.
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“I did think we had a bit of an opportunity tonight here though because they are depleted a bit and we’ve been playing well. I fancied us.”
He continued: “I watched them on Saturday, saw them go to 4-3-3 in the second half (of a 0-0 draw at Brentford) and I suspected they might start that way so I set us up for that. Tactically it worked and I thought we were the better side.
“They’ll probably look at the stats and say they had a lot of ball possession and a lot of shots, but I can’t remember Gerks (Dean Gerken) making too many saves. We hit the crossbar and post and had the better chances.”
On Murphy’s goal, which hit defender Connor Goldson after striking the post, seemingly after the ball had already crossed the line, McCarthy said: “I hope the stupid dubious goals panel doesn’t take it away from him.”
And on Gerken’s super reaction stop moments before Town broke the deadlock, the Blues keeper reacting quickly to tip Dale Stephens’ cheeky heeled flick onto the bar, McCarthy said: “He’s a good keeper. I know he had a few doubters when we weren’t winning as many games and conceding goals, but he wasn’t at fault then and he’s been terrific.”
Luke Hyam made his first appearance following a loan spell at Rotherham, coming on as an early second half sub, Luke Varney stepped off the bench for a third time since a long-term injury, while Ryan Fraser made his first start since injury too.
“It’s good to have them all back and contributing,” said McCarthy.