Portman Road

Next Game

Ipswich v B'mouth

Friday, 03 April 2015, 17:15

Sky Bet Ch'ship

Last Game

Watford 0 - 1 Ipswich

Saturday, 21 March 2015, 15:00

Sky Bet Ch'ship

McCarthy: Wigan are favourites

Mick McCarthy believes play-off rivals Wigan are in the best place to claim a top-six spot - despite his Ipswich Town side edging closer with a 1-0 victory over Birmingham.

Last Updated: 01/03/14 at 18:23 Post Comment

Mick McCarthy: Played down Ipswich's play-off hopes

Mick McCarthy: Played down Ipswich's play-off hopes

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Daryl Murphy was the match winner with a 38th-minute tap-in following good work from Paul Taylor and Frank Nouble.

Ipswich are now four points off sixth place but McCarthy insists others are better placed to claim a play-off spot.

The Town boss said: "I think the top five are clear and Wigan are the favourites for the sixth spot.

"They are ahead of us and they still have players from the Premier League last season. But we are still in there, scrapping away."

Of his side's single-goal victory, Town's fourth consecutive clean sheet at Portman Road, McCarthy added: "I think it was the right result - just. But I don't think we dominated Birmingham by any stretch of the imagination."

After a poor 35 minutes, the match turned on two big chances.

Murphy gave his side the lead after tapping home Nouble's low cross following great work from man-of-the-match Taylor.

The goal gave Ipswich a new lease of life and they deserved the three points after an impressive second-half showing.

But Birmingham should have restored parity on 63 minutes when Lee Novak was presented with an identical chance to Murphy's opener.

Sub Chris Burke did well to beat Tommy Smith and his low centre should have brought the equaliser, only for Nowak to fire over when it looked easier to score.

Anything but a victory would have been harsh on Ipswich who improved after taking the lead.

Taylor - who only started after new loan signing Jonny Williams got injured in training on Friday - was at the heart of all their best moments and he twice went close to doubling the lead before Birmingham keeper Darren Randolph saved from Paul Anderson after a woeful back pass from Jonathan Spector.

Birmingham boss Lee Clark had little complaints in his post-match summing-up.

Clark said: "We were a little toothless. We didn't have enough quality. The defence was solid and we stood up to a big physical team in Ipswich - we did the ugly stuff well.

"But we didn't do enough when we had possession. We lacked that quality and I don't think we deserved anything from the game."

And Clark felt Novak's gilt-edged chance was typical of his side's overall performance.

He added: "Lee Novak usually puts those chances away but unfortunately he hit it over the bar.

"A chance like that, away from home when you are not creating many, has to be taken and that seemed to be a problem for us today."

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

S

hould have stayed because we carried him for 6.5 years. And then he has a breakthrough season, and was gone soon after. MU fans, you would be as disgusted had C Ronaldo left in 2007 and not 2009.

godof86
Is Van Persie Slipping Sadly Into The Night?

G

ood grief. Someone guessed that the form English player at the moment might be in his national side with some other players? And that's espionage? Now if they discovered that Emile Heskey was going to be in the starting line up.... at right back.... THAT would be espionage. Give it a rest Roy.

RogerRedHat
Hodgson hits out at Kane leak

H

e may get away with if Liverpool can swap the video with one of Skrtel dancing or something, but if they review the one shown on TV he's screwed.

hump3.
Skrtel denies violent conduct

Footer 365

Italy 1-1 England: Andros Townsend equaliser keeps Roy Hodgson's side unbeaten this season

Substitute Andros Townsend rescued England's unbeaten post-World Cup record as his late goal in Turin earned a 1-1 draw.

Jack Wilshere, Mikel Arteta and Mathieu Debuchy step up Arsenal comebacks

Jack Wilshere scored as he stepped up his comeback from injury against a Brentford XI at Arsenal's training ground on Tuesday.

England's Andros Townsend happy to silence critics with equaliser in Italy

Andros Townsend was delighted to repay Roy Hodgson's faith with the equalising goal as England drew in Italy on Tuesday.

Mail Box

Why Do Arsenal Have So Many 'Internet Warriors'?

The Mailbox has an open letter from Liverpool's Raheem Sterling, questions Phil Jones' bulldog spirit and asks: "Why do Arsenal have so many "internet warriors?"

It's All Just A Ruse By The 'Southern Press'...

A varied Tuesday morning Mailbox, with thoughts on the England U21s, a Sterling ruse, Kane realism, Wenger coaching youth and enjoying the charity match...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company