Magilton optimistic despite concerns
BLUES boss Jim Magilton is convinced a couple of wins over the next week will lift the pall of concern around Ipswich Town at the moment.After the trip to Plymouth today Town entertain Charlton, whose manager Alan Pardew is also under pressure, and then QPR, who sacked their boss Iain Dowie yesterday morning.
BLUES boss Jim Magilton is convinced a couple of wins over the next week will lift the pall of concern around Ipswich Town at the moment.
After the trip to Plymouth today Town entertain Charlton, whose manager Alan Pardew is also under pressure, and then QPR, who sacked their boss Iain Dowie yesterday morning.
Even though Town start the day in 18th place, compared to fourth after a dozen games last year, Magilton believes his side are better than they were last season.
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He said: “Are we better than last year? Yes we are, that is an absolute fact. We are starting to pick up points away from home and we are looking very good. Have we won as many games as we would expect? No.
“We have not played as well as we would expect in moments in games. But two more wins and we would not have the background that currently exists.
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“We would be in the mix, so we need to get in the mix.
“The players have given me everything they have got. With a little bit of good fortune and if we carry on playing in the manner we have, then we will get there - simple as that.”
Magilton is adamant his players are giving their all for him and has called on them to show the courage of their convictions.
He said: “We have lost one in eight. Good players make good decisions.
“I didn't see any of my players lacking confidence at Forest. We controlled large chunks of the game and kept their crowd quiet.
“What we have to try now is encourage the players to take the risk of winning.
“That might be like Alan Quinn bursting in the box and winning a penalty. It is about quality in the final third.”
With Town so low in the table winning is everything, and Magilton doesn't mind if it means doing it the ugly way, although maintains his side set out to play attractive attacking football.
He said: “Every player we have used is attack-minded. They all handle the ball very well. We play that way simply because we want to have the ball. It silences the home crowd and they get very twitchy, as they were at Nottingham and Sheffield Wednesday.”
“Our tradition has always been 4-4-2 with two strikers because that sets out the intention to go and win the game. Whatever we put out our intention is to go and win a game of football. I call it a 4-3-3, 4-1-2-3, it doesn't matter. Call it what you will, if you have right players in the team it is not a defensive system.
“If we come away and win 1-0 then that is a fantastic result. Coming away with anything at Plymouth would be a good result there.”
The Pilgrims are in good form at Home Park, three straight wins without conceding, and Magilton accepts it won't be easy.
“No one likes going to Plymouth and it is a difficult place to go.
“They have a good home record and the crowd is always vociferous so we have to quieten all that and come back and beat them.
“Rory Fallon and Paul Gallagher are both having a really good time so they have real threats.
“Plymouth didn't start the season well but they got a string of results and confidence is flowing have climbed up so we recognise it will be difficult.
“But I have a team that is going to Plymouth and stand up and be counted as they did on Tuesday night.
“What is pleasing me is we are finishing game so strongly.”
Town have started talks with Jon Walters about a longer term contract, even though he only agreed a new three-year contract in January.
Magilton has a full strength squad to choose from but has not been tempted to include Ben Thatcher who has returned to full training after recovering from a torn thigh muscle.
Ipswich Town: R Wright, Supple, Volz, D Wright, Bruce, Balkestein, Naylor, McAuley, Campo, Shumulikoski, Miller, Garvan, Haynes, Walters, Quinn, Lisbie, Stead, Counago.
Plymouth Argyle: Larrieu, Stack, McNamee, Doumbe, Barker, Timar, Cathcart, Seip, Walton, Folly, Mackie, Summerfield, Duguid, Clark, Paterson, Marin, Noone, Fallon, Gallagher, Maclean.