Ryan Fraser won’t be returning to Ipswich Town – but Mick McCarthy ‘optimistic’ of finding a replacement of similar ilk
- Credit: PA
Ipswich Town boss Mick McCarthy has given up hope of bringing Ryan Fraser back on loan, but says he remains ‘optimistic’ about finding a replacement of a similar ilk.
Fraser proved a revelation at Portman Road during his season-long loan from Bournemouth with some dazzling displays on the wing.
The 22-year-old Scot would have undoubtedly scooped every end-of-season award going had it not been for the fact that injuries restricted him to just 15 league starts.
Town now don’t have a single recognised winger on their books with the start of the new Championship season less than four weeks away.
Asked if there was any chance of Fraser returning from the Cherries on a temporary basis, McCarthy replied: “No – I did ask. I spoke to Eddie Howe. I didn’t think it would be likely, but I have left my mark just in case.”
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Bournemouth finished 16th in their debut top-flight campaign. They have sold winger Matt Ritchie to Newcastle for £10million this summer, but are on the verge of breaking their transfer record to sign Liverpool wideman Jordon Ibe for £15m.
“They have signed Jordon Ibe, but he is more of a right-winger and Ryan is best on the left,” said McCarthy.
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“I spoke to Eddie, and I am sure he knew this anyway, but he asked me what I thought and I said I thought he could play for any team in the Premier League. I said ‘if you put him in, he’ll handle it’.
“He can play on the inside, he goes past people, he can see a pass and he’s got a goal in him. And he does all the horrible stuff as well, which I think was a big reason he came to us, because they knew he would have to do all of that with us.
“And he did. I remember the game against Brighton when he won a header against a six foot wide player at the back stick.
“He bought into all of that. He’s a great kid and I’d love to see him do well in the Premier League.”
Asked if it would be difficult to find another loan winger of Fraser’s ilk, McCarthy replied: “I always think something will come along. I’m optimistic about it.
“What that might be I don’t know, but I remain optimistic.”
Meanwhile, Town academy striker Charlie Brown, 16, has signed for Chelsea. It’s understood the Blues could receive more than £500,000 in compensation.
“It’s always frustrating to lose someone you want to keep – at whatever age,” said McCarthy. “It’s just one of those things you can’t do anything about. You just have to do the best deal you can.”