Reaction: Mick McCarthy says Sol Bamba’s crazy red card actually affected Ipswich Town more than Cardiff City
- Credit: Picture: Steve Waller
Ipswich Town manager Mick McCarthy admits Sol Bamba’s hot-headed red card had more of an adverse affect on his team than it did 10-man Cardiff City in this afternoon’s 1-1 draw at Portman Road.
Bluebirds defender Bamba completely lost the plot after being hit by a late Jonathan Douglas challenge and was sent off after shoving his own physio, angrily confronting the fourth official and grappling with his own manager, Neil Warnock.
That incident came in the 70th minute, Luke Varney having already cancelled out Aron Gunnarsson’s first-half opener.
Town – who have scored just 18 goals in 20 Championship games this season – weren’t able to take advantage though and in the end were left clinging on for a point in stoppage-time.
Asked if he wanted to discuss the game before the red card, McCarthy quipped: “Do I have to?”
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He continued: “The game’s going nowhere then arguably our most consistent and best player (keeper Bartosz Bialkowski) drops a corner (to gift Gunnarsson the opener). He has been brilliant though, so I have no recriminations with him at all because he made some good saves today as well.
“Fair play to the lads, they had a good response second half and got back in it. The sending off, probably, affected us more than it did them funnily enough. They sat in, made it difficult to play around them and through them.
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“We were doing alright against 11 men so I think it had a worse affect on us.”
Can he explain why that is?
“I don’t know,” replied the Blues boss. “Maybe the thought of not winning against 10 men, the thought of maybe even losing against 10, gets in players heads.
“And they’re no mugs by the way. They’ve put (Anthony) Pilkington and (Craig) Noone on as two subs, well they ain’t too bad are they?
“By no stretch of the imagination are they any mugs.”
On Bamba’s mad moment, McCarthy said: “I’ve seen a lot of players lose it, I’ve lost it myself, but never with the fourth official.
“He was trying to get at Dougie (Jonathan Douglas), Didzy (David McGoldrick) stopped him and Pits (Brett Pitman) is saying ‘let him go’ because you could see what was coming. He couldn’t get at Dougie so he came had a go at the fourth official.
“You can’t condone that, whatever happens. He thoroughly deserves to be sent off for the way he approached the fourth official. You just can’t do that.
“It was a foul on him, but the game went on. It was a red card.”
Was McCarthy frustrated that his team didn’t really create many chances to win the match in the last 20 minutes?
“Of course I am,” he said. “We got Bish (Teddy Bishop) on the ball once and he works his magic to win a free-kick and we (McGoldrick) put that free-kick over the bar.
“We’ve to work the goalie, or hit the wall and get something off it. That just deflates us. We got into good positions a number of times and didn’t put a decent cross in. I was banging on about that this week and I still am.”
Is that down to quality or confidence?
“As long as they keep getting in those positions,” said McCarthy. “It’s when they stop doing that when it becomes a problem. Keep doing it, keep getting on the over-lap, keep getting crosses in and it will come. We’ll keep working on it.”
Cardiff could have won the match in stoppage-time as Bialkowski kept out a Sean Morrison header and Christophe Berra produced a fine block on Bruno Manga.
“Our game management is ridiculous there,” said McCarthy. “If it’s 1-1 just take the point, we certainly shouldn’t do what we did by giving them a chance and giving them a free-kick.
“(Peter) Whittingham hits the wall, gets a corner, they had a chance from the corner, a chance from the other corner. They just kept sustained pressure on and right at the very death could have nicked it. Thankfully they didn’t.”
Cardiff boss Neil Warnock, meanwhile, blamed Douglas for the Bamba red card. He said: “I think Douglas has been clever – he has left his studs on the ankle. If the referee had just blown for a foul, it would have stopped all the hassle.
“But he tried to give advantage, which we didn’t want, and it erupts. I have no complaints about the red card. It is disappointing that we lose one of our best players for three matches.
“I didn’t really want to talk to Sol after the game so I will see him tomorrow. He just lost his rag but it was an aggressive attitude and I don’t condone Sol’s behaviour.
“He is distraught in the dressing room and quite rightly. For me, he is one of the best in the Championship and that was a blemish I haven’t seen in his make-up.
“But I think it actually revitalised us and we had some good chances to win the game late on. It’s shame we’re talking about this and not a good performance from us.”