In the end it was over too soon for Mick’s Ipswich, writes Russell Claydon
It was a season we couldn’t wait to finish, but on further reflection, one that ended too soon.
I’ve come in for some criticism over my defence of Mick McCarthy and the injury situation I kept mentioning. But hopefully April justified my position (not to mention my ‘you’ll never even get in the top seven’ bet (how much was it for, Alex Moss?).
With two of the creative triumvirate of Ryan Fraser, David McGoldrick and Teddy Bishop back there were credible draws at now-promoted Middlesbrough (0-0), play-off qualifiers Sheffield Wednesday (1-1) and then Saturday’s win (1-0) at a Derby County side also set for an extended season.
We haven’t spent the money, but still Mick hasn’t had us far off those sides - even robbed of key players.
The football hasn’t always been as turgid as people will remember in February and March, and Bishop and McGoldrick showed again at Pride Park what their worth is. Their recent injury records ironically work in our favour with trying to keep them, and if we can keep both fit for at least three quarters of our 2016-17 campaign I’m hopeful that by adding a few quality additions, particularly midfielders, we can go better than seventh.
Liam Feeney is a player that looks worth keeping, in a season where, Fraser and Brett Pitman aside, recruitment didn’t really go to plan with Laursen Toure, Tommy Oar and Josh Yorweth released and loanee Ainsley Maitland-Niles not living up to his promise.
Jonas Knudsen learnt as the season went on, and with Myles Kenlock’s emergence we should have two players to push each other.
Blues news: Luke Hyam has signed a new contract.
It’s good to see a local boy signing a new deal.
Injuries have interrupted his season, so hopefully he can have big impact next year.
I’ll be back for one last column, my regular alternative Town awards, next week.