Town boss looks ahead to this evening's FA Cup third round replay against Lincoln City
Mick McCarthy believes having more experience in the side will make Town better equipped to take on the fearless Lincoln City this evening.
The Blues were without skipper, Luke Chambers, and vice captain Cole Skuse for the initial 2-2 draw at Portman Road, and the boss doesn't expect anything but another high intensity performance from the National League leaders at Sincil Bank.
"I had two of my most experienced players out of the team in Chambo and Skusey, and that didn't help," he told Ipswich Player HD.
"It also didn't help that they're top of the league, they're flying, they brought 5,000 fans and were up for it.
"It's easy when you're that team to be up for it, I've been there. Everybody says it should be just as easy for us, but it's not, and I don't know why.
"Sometimes you just have to be hard-nose, brutally professional and deal with it, and we weren't.
"We will be a bit more experienced, so I would hope for a much better performance and for us to win."
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Mick McCarthy confirmed in his pre-match press conference that Dean Gerken would start in goal at Sincil Bank, but faces being without left-back Myles Kenlock for another three weeks. The game will come just too soon for Brett Pitman, who is ruled out with a calf injury, but he should be OK to return at Huddersfield on Saturday. David McGoldrick is also close to shaking off his hamstring injury, but will likely be next Saturday before he is ready to make his comeback. Tommy Smith [back], Jonny Williams [shoulder], Teddy Bishop [ankle], Luke Hyam and Giles Coke [both knee] remain out.
Danny Cowley's side are likely to revert back to a similar side to the one that lined up at Portman Road last weekend, having made six changes to that team for the Imps' 3-1 FA Trophy win over Gateshead on Saturday. Captain, Luke Waterfall, winger Nathan Arnold and striker Theo Robinson all dropped out of that squad completely, but will be reinstated for this evening's game.
Where They Stand
Town - 14th - Championship
Lincoln - 1st - National League
Last Time They Met
It was just ten days ago, as Town and the Imps played out a thrilling 2-2 draw at Portman Road, with the Blues relying on some magic from Tom Lawrence to force this evening's replay at Sincil Bank. Theo Robinson sent the 5,000 visiting supporters into raptures as he opened the scoring early on, but Lawrence pegged Danny Cowley's side back immediately with a superb solo goal. Robinson again had the Imps in front after the break as he latched onto a back header from Christophe Berra before firing past Gerken. With the game drawing to a close, it looked as if Town were on course for a third round FA Cup exit, but for Lawrence again who scored with a powerful, low drive from 25 yards.
After a frustrating start to the season, the 17-year old has broken into the side, and is fighting to keep his place. He was a game changer in the 2-1 win over Bristol City in the final game of 2016, and has been rewarded with starts against the Imps in the initial tie, as well as against Blackburn, in Saturday's 3-2 win. He is doing his best to make a name for himself, and came close to scoring against Lincoln last time out, as he continues to look to add to his only goal for Town so far against Sheffield Wednesday last season.
The former Derby and Doncaster frontman scored a double at Portman Road ten days ago, and he will be the man Lincoln will look to, to get on the scoresheet again this evening. He has plenty of experience in playing against Championship sides, from his spells elsewhere, and his current employers will undoubtedly be hoping to draw on that experience in front of the BBC cameras.
Sky Bet Odds
Referee: Ben Toner
Assistant Referees: Billy Smallwood & Alix Pashley
Fourth Official: Mark Haywood
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