|Our Most Talented Squad in Years, But They Must Not Be Held Back|
Written by Pickersblue22 on Wednesday, 5th Aug 2015 13:37
There is quite rightly a lot of excitement surrounding Ipswich Town in the build up to the new season. Our squad is the strongest it has been since Joe Royle's Class of 2004/05, and we are well-placed to build on our sixth-placed finish last season.
Optimism has been replaced by expectation and 100% belief that we are good enough to reach for the stars this season. We will have to contend with the tag of 'play-off semi-finalists' which brings further expectation. Other teams will look at us and will feel they have to play well to beat us, and they will raise they game, which we have to be ready for.
Let us consider the differences in our squad. The standout loss is Tyrone Mings, but fingers are crossed that we have found a gem in Jonas Knudsen as a replacement. The other players that have gone are Stephen Hunt, Noel Hunt, Paul Anderson and Richard Chaplow.
Now surely Ryan Fraser, Brett Pitman, Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Jonathan Douglas are a cut above. When you add in Josh Yorwerth, Giles Coke and Larsen Touré, there is strength in depth that we have not had for a while. I always like to judge a team on the players that can't get into it, and in the case of our team, there will be some very good players who will miss out.
It is therefore vital that Mick McCarthy maximises the talent that he has at his disposal. If we play the same way as last season, we will not be successful or effective. Last season our most important players were our strikers, especially Daryl Murphy, and basically the whole back four.
Now though we have much better wide players, as well as great depth in central midfield. Mick must let the players express themselves on the pitch, and not shackle them by playing unimaginative football. I am sure he knows that he has a much stronger squad this time around, and he will be able to be more flexible with his tactics.
I think last season we got the best we could out of a very spirited, but slightly limited squad, that relied on the brilliance of Murphy and Berra. Now there is far more balance, which can only bode well.
This is a big season for David McGoldrick. He has had such a frustrating time with injuries recently, and we are all desperate to see him stay fit and show his class. He is undoubtedly one of the most talented players in the whole league. He just needs to show it now. With Murphy guaranteed to start, the big question is whether there is room for him and Freddie Sears in the team. My answer would probably be no, which means that one of them will be on the bench, which is amazing. I think McGoldrick will get the nod for Brentford, just tucked in behind Murphy.
Something I think all Town fans would like to know is why we haven't properly pushed the boat in terms of money spent on players. There was a fee paid for Knudsen, and it remains to be seen whether we can sign Jordan McGhee from Hearts.
But with our rivals forking out seven-figure sums for players, the simple question is - why can't we? We don't have to, but why don't we? I can only guess that our wage bill puts us on the edge of FFP, which means bigger transfer sums are not an option. I am not saying our current ploy is a bad thing , but I just wonder whether there is money there to be spent that is not being used. But we have learnt to trust Mick!
I really think our fans now have a super team to be really proud of. Mick has more selection headaches than he has ever had in his time here, and our squad is full of players that can entertain and excite. We are in a position now where Mick can make changes to the team, and not really weaken it, which is a very positive sign. The sky's the limit for us this season. We can get there. Believe.
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