It is still early days for Mick McCarthy at Ipswich but it has to be said, he has done an amazing job so far. In fact I believe that if he carries on grinding out results then he should be named as the manager of the season.
Of course this may seem a little over the top and drastic especially this early on but when you take a minute to actually look at the results that he has got, it makes some very impressive reading given the mess he inherited at the club.
As soon as the former Wolves boss took over most fans seemed to accept the fact that he would not be able to turn things around right away. Everyone was prepared to give McCarthy plenty of time before demanding good results and it was expected that he would not turn things around until January after buying some new players. However, McCarthy did not need this kind gesture of patience from the fans and he has already brought the team into form similar to that of teams in the play-off positions.
The Ipswich manager has been in charge for seven games now and he has picked up an impressive 13 points in that time. Most decent sides would consider a two point per game ratio pretty good, so the fact that McCarthy has nearly reached that right away is very impressive.
He has come to Ipswich when the club are at their lowest point in many years. Only eight teams have spent longer continuously in the top two divisions than Ipswich, which shows how much going down would mean to the Suffolk club. The atmosphere at Portman Road has gradually been drained by years of mid-table obscurity and teams full of mercenaries. McCarthy still took the job though and he has shown that no challenge is too big for him.
For me, the reason why these results have been so impressive is because the squad he inherited was a complete disaster. Half the team are only on short-term deals and the other half are massively lacking in confidence. I dread to think what McCarthy must have been thinking when he turned up to his first training session with the Tractor Boys, he probably did not even know where to start.
However, it looks like he has made some sort of impact on the training pitch. McCarthy is clearly getting the best out of some players that were previously under-performing because in terms of personnel he has not been able to drastically change things.
It could be a honeymoon effect that has brought about these good results or it could just be good man management and tactical awareness. I would like to say that it is the latter but at the moment Ipswich are completely unpredictable and you never know which team will turn up in the future.
Of course there have been some very bad results under McCarthy when the team were thrashed by Crystal Palace and Leicester but these were games against good sides that took full advantage of a team lacking in confidence. Results like these two were pretty hard to avoid and McCarthy’s main aim was always going to be trying to grind out results against the weaker teams.
Like I say, the positive results could all just be down to a honeymoon effect or it could be great management from the new boss. It is too early to tell for sure but in my eyes if McCarthy keeps on getting good results then he should be named as manager of the season.