Winning is all that matters, says Mick McCarthy

Town manager Mick McCarthy and his assistant Terry Connor signal to bring on super sub Brett Pitman

Town manager Mick McCarthy and his assistant Terry Connor signal to bring on super sub Brett Pitman during the second half of the Ipswich Town v Readiing (Championship) football match at Portman Road, Ipswich, on 02 February 2016. Picture: Steve Waller - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

Even the best teams love a scrappy win from time-to-time.

So says Ipswich Town boss Mick McCarthy ahead of this afternoon’s Championship match at Queens Park Rangers.

The Blues have won six of their last 10 league games – form only bettered by the division’s top two sides of Hull (7) and Middlesbrough (7) – with all of those victories having come by a single goal margin.

Tuesday night’s 2-1 home win against Reading came courtesy of perspiration and perseverance, with 90-minute entertainment value having been in short supply at Portman Road this season.

Last-gasp winners on Suffolk soil, combined with some excellent displays on the road, mean McCarthy’s men occupy sixth spot with just 17 games to go.

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“It’s a continual scrap to be up there, but we are – we’re still in it,” said the Blues boss.

“There are a few below us who have gone out and spent a shed load of money and who will be looking enviously at us and be thinking it’s going to be difficult to catch us.

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“There wasn’t much quality football from either team the other night, but we ground out a win.

“It’s funny. If you watch Manchester City the other night, who scored and then got battered (ultimately winning 1-0 at Sunderland), everyone says ‘if you can win when you play like that’.

“That’s just what it’s all about – winning games. We’ve got 17 left and we’re ticking along nicely. I’m not bothered how we play really, just win.

“We want to play well and entertain people every week, it would be lovely if we did, but the more the games go the less likely that’s going to be from all of us in the division.

“I would imagine both Derby (winless in six) and Middlesbrough (back-to-back defeats), two of the biggest spenders and best footballing teams in the division, would take a scrappy 1-0 win at the moment.”

Having been criticised for not making any key additions during the January transfer window, McCarthy continued: “I haven’t got a lot of money to spend and I wasn’t going to go out and get mediocrity just for the sake of it.”

Asked if, for argument’s sake, spending one million pounds on a player could get you mediocrity in today’s market, he replied: “It could, yes. It could end up getting me someone who is not as good as those we already have in the team. We did actually bid on some of the younger ones, but that didn’t work out, for whatever reason. They were players that I thought would eventually make us better, or strengthen the squad.”

– See today’s EADT for full match preview. Log on from 2pm for team news and live match updates.

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