You’ve done nothing wrong – McCarthy’s message to Jonathan Parr
- Credit: Archant
Just be ready to go again.
That’s the simple message from Ipswich Town manager Mick McCarthy to dropped full-back Jonathan Parr.
The Blues went through a spell of having two attack-minded full-backs in Parr and Tyrone Mings earlier in the season.
It made for easy-on-the-eye football during four successive wins against Millwall, Brighton, Wigan and Rotherham, but the Blues defence then looked a little vulnerable during a five-game winless run.
McCarthy shifted skipper Luke Chambers to right-back again, bringing Tommy Smith back into the team at centre-back, and the Blues have now gone eight games without a defeat.
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Parr has played just one of those matches – starting the 1-0 win at Charlton in the absence of the suspended Christophe Berra – but quickly returned to the bench.
“Tommy’s been great,” said McCarthy. “I think when he got back in for one game and got left out for the next, that irked him a little bit. But he still managed to keep his council, do things right and be the model professional.
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“I’ve had the same discussion with Jonny Parr of course. He played at Charlton and I said to him ‘I’m not going to make up excuses about why I’m not playing you again’. I couldn’t say ‘you could have done this better’. It was just a case of that being my preferred back four.
“There was not a lot he could do and not a lot I could say to make him feel any better. All I could say was ‘be ready to go again’.”
A big part of Town’s success this season has been the spirit within a tight-knit squad, an ‘all for one and one for all’ mentality very much apparent.
Striker Balint Bajner may be down the pecking order but he was first on the scene to celebrate Noel Hunt’s late winner at Charlton. And the likes of Bartosz Bialkowski, Jay Tabb, Paul Anderson and Stephen Hunt have all got their heads down, trained hard and taken their chances with both hands following spells out the side. “They all want to play every game, they don’t just accept it when they’re left out, but they accept it for the right reasons,” said McCarthy.
“Sometimes I just have to say ‘I’m not playing you today because I prefer somebody else’.
“They’re great at accepting that. And then when they get the opportunity to come back in they always do well.”