TEAM NEWS: Seven players return to fitness for Ipswich Town ahead of Reading trip
- Credit: Ashley Pickering
Ipswich Town boss Mick McCarthy has at least seven more players available for selection ahead of Saturday’s trip to Reading – and David McGoldrick could start
Following last weekend’s 2-1 home win over Fulham, McCarthy made eight largely changes to his starting line-up for the Tuesday night trip to League One side Crawley Town – the Blues exiting the Capital One Cup via a late goal in extra-time.
Tommy Smith (sore groin), Tyrone Mings (back), Luke Hyam (cramp), David McGoldrick (sore groin) and Daryl Murphy (calf) have all returned to training today though, as has summer signing Jonathan Parr – who missed out on the opening two matches with a groin problem.
Cole Skuse (foot) remains a doubt, while Cameron Stewart (broken jaw) and Stephen Hunt (calf) are still sidelined.
“The lads that didn’t play on Tuesday were genuinely injured, but most of them are okay for the weekend,” said McCarthy. “Tommy Smith trained today, so did Murph, David McGoldrick, Paul Anderson and Jonny Parr. None of them could have played on Tuesday.
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“Tyrone Mings was absolutely goosed (after the Fulham game) and so was Luke Hyam, so that’s why I took them out. And Tabby (Jay Tabb), well I took him out because I don’t have too many fit left-sided players at he moment and I wanted him fit and raring to go at his former club.
“All bar Skusey have trained today. He’s the only one who’s still a doubt, but I’m hoping he’ll train tomorrow.
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“It’s good to have a fit squad and more options because we’ve got a Saturday-Tuesday-Saturday schedule (a trip to Birmingham next Tuesday followed by visit of rivals Norwich City to Portman Road next Saturday). It’s a big week for us.”
Christophe Berra, Luke Chambers and Elliott Hewitt were the trio of players who started against both Fulham and Crawley, all three of them playing the entire 120 minutes in midweek.
“They’re alright,” said Mccarthy. “Elliott is fit as a flea, he’s only a young lad, and the other two are top pros. They’ve not done anything today, they’ll do very little tomorrow, but will be raring to go come the weekend.”
Asked if McGoldrick is ready to start a game, the striker having been sidelined for six months with a knee injury before coming on as a 44th minute sub and scoring against Fulham last weekend, McCarthy replied: “I would say so. Then the question would be ‘would he finish?’ We saw how strong he looked in the 45/50 minutes he played last weekend. It’s a different 50 minutes starting from the kick-off though. It is different, there’s no question.”
And when asked whether there were any new signings in the pipleine, he said: “Not at the moment, but I’ve got the majority of the squad fit and available again so I’m alright for Saturday.”
Reading – who drew 2-2 at Wigan on the opening weekend of the new Championship season before beating Newport County 3-1 at home in the Capital One Cup on Tuesday night – have a number of players unavailable.
Centre-back Sean Morrison has been given permission to speak to Cardiff, while key players Jem Karacan (knee), Hal Robson-Kanu (knee), Garath McCleary (back), Stephen Kelly (knee) and Danny Williams (knee) are all long-term injuries.
Danny Guthrie (calf) is also a doubt, while the game has come too soon for new signings Anton Ferdinand (lacking match fitness) and Jamie Mackie (hamstring).
A host of academy graduates are likely to be in the Royals squad, while striker Simon Cox – signed from Nottingham Forest at the back end of last week – could be handed his full debut.
– See tomorrow’s EADT and Ipswich Star for all the latest Blues news.