Uncertainty over Ipswich Town manager's future does not affect players, says Grant Ward
PUBLISHED: 12:00 14 February 2017
Â© Copyright Stephen Waller
Ipswich Town winger Grant Ward says speculation over manager Mick McCarthy’s future does not affect the players’ performances on the pitch.
McCarthy has admitted in recent weeks that he will take stock of his future at Portman Road at the end of the season, the Blues having endured an inconsistent and, at times disappointing campaign, to date.
Tonight, the injury-hit Blues head to second-top Brighton without experienced centre-backs Christophe Berra (concussion) and Steven Taylor (hamstring), meaning full-backs Jonas Knudsen and Jordan Spence could be asked to play in a makeshift back-three.
Spence and Knudsen performed admirably in the unfamiliar roles at the weekend, following the injuries to Berra and Taylor, as a buoyant Town side became the first team to win at Aston Villa this season.
That result, on the back of an encouraging 2--2 home draw with play-off chasing Reading, may have seen McCarthy win some dissenting supporters back, not that the players are taking much notice of off-field matters.
“We have got to focus on our games, us on the pitch, do our jobs – do the best for yourself – and that will come later on,” said Ward.
“He (McCarthy) gets most of the criticism if anything happens bad and we owe him a few good performances and I think we have been doing that of late.”
Ward played in a midfield three at the weekend, alongside recent arrivals, Toumani Diagouraga and match-winner Emyr Huws.
“I have been impressed with them.
“Before the matches they looked top-notch and it’s good to get some people come in and add something to the team,” said the former Rotherham man,
“We are starting to build a relationship and more you play together, the more you will learn how they play.”
Diagouraga and Huws’ arrivals have coincided with Town picking up four points from their last two games.
Tonight the Blues head to a Brighton team that have lost just twice at home since Town won there on December 29, 2015.
Ward said: “Even before the Reading game we had a few good games and did not get the results we should have.
“I feel we have been playing better football, passing it round a bit more and creating more chances.”