Reaction: Mick McCarthy on ‘disappointing’ display, unbeaten run and Emyr Huws wanting to stay

Town manager Mick McCarthy pictured during the Ipswich Town v Brentford (Sky Bet Championship) match

Town manager Mick McCarthy pictured during the Ipswich Town v Brentford (Sky Bet Championship) match at Portman Road, Ipswich, on 04 March 2017. Picture: Steve Waller - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

Ipswich Town boss Mick McCarthy admitted his side were fortunate to keep their unbeaten run going following this afternoon’s 1-1 draw with Brentford at Portman Road.

Emyr Huws put the Blues in front after 26 minutes with a smart finish, but Nico Yennaris levelled things up just before the break and the visitors were the better side after the restart. Myles Kenlock produced a vital goalline clearance in what was a forgettable Championship match.

Town are undefeated in six games, but have drawn five of those having led on all five occasions. They move up a place to 15th in the Championship standings ahead of Tuesday night’s visit of relegation-fighting Wolves.

“Listen, let’s clear it up, they were very, very good,” said McCarthy. “We weren’t particularly good with the ball at all. They probably deserved to win it. They were the best team. Why that is I don’t know. Probably because they are a good side.

“We’ve played a lot better in the last five games and probably deserved more points than we’ve actually got. Today we had to scrap and fight and stick at it. If there’s a bright spot or a positive point it’s that we got a point when eight weeks ago I’d have been sat here with a face like thunder and we’d have probably lost that 3-1.”

He continued: “That’s six unbeaten now. I know it’s been five draws and a win, but that’s another point after a tough old time. It’s a measure of the lads that they stuck at that today when in the past we’d have been beaten.

“It’s just not happened for us today. It’s a shame for our fans when we’ve had five other games when it’s been a lot better. Today has been disappointing. You always want to get three points, but there are some days when you just take the point and be glad of it. Today was one of those days.”

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With star man Tom Lawrence below-par on his return to the team following a two-game suspension, McCarthy said: “He’s having to nurse an ankle injury a bit. It won’t be perfect again until he can go away in the summer and put it in the sea somewhere and have a few weeks off.

“He hadn’t played for two weeks, so he wasn’t going to be as sharp, but I thought it was the right decision to play him because he’d been brilliant. Freddie (Sears) came in and did exceptionally well, but Tom’s been our talisman.”

With Cardiff loanee Huws netting his second goal of an encouraging six-game loan spell, McCarthy said: “I’ve spoken to Emyr and asked him if he’d like to join, which is the first step, and he’s said he’d be delighted to. That’s positive. I don’t think he’d say ‘no, p*** off’ though would he?!

“He’s said he’d love to join, which is good. He said he’s loving it. He’s enjoying playing again. I think everybody is enjoying having him here. Certainly I am and I think the fans are too.”

Revealing Huws has reported a tight hamstring, the Blues boss added: “We have a few lads who have come in having not played all season. Jordan Spence is another one who has come here having not done anything to playing week-in, week-out. Emyr and Toums (Toumani Diagouraga) are the same. They’ve found it tough.

“Luke (Chambers) got a knock which took the wind out of him, but I don’t think anyone will be a doubt for Tuesday. We’ll see tomorrow.”

With Cole Skuse the pick of Town’s players, and coming close to putting the finishing touch on a slick move late on, McCarthy said: “He generally is the sitter and the security, but I think as a footballer you should be doing a bit of everything. He’s just recognised his opportunity to play and go forward and is a bit unfortunate he couldn’t get more contact on it.”

Bees boss Dean Smith said: “It was a scrappy game and neither goalkeeper was worked as much as they should have been. I don’t think the pitch here helps flowing football at the moment. It’s a little bit slow and bobbly.

“We started the game quite well, there was a spell where they took over for 20 minutes and the lad’s scored a good goal. It was a good finish, though we could have marked tighter and stopped the cross. We got back into it and scored a well-worked goal. Second half I thought we were the better team and looked the more likely to win it.”

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