MICK FINISHES SALVAGE ACT
round thinking we’re in the play-offs. I didn’t enjoy that. But it was a lap of appreciation from us to them, for their support.”
Town skipper Edwards gave his side a golden start, bursting forward before powering an unstoppable long-range effort across goal and inside the top left-hand corner.
“Carlos came up with a complete bomb,” said McCarthy.“He’s an amaz- ing athlete and he’s played so well.
“He’s become more cultured and considered and he’s chipped in with goals, which is important. You can’t just rely on our strikers.”
Edwards’ screamer set the tone for an intense spell of pressure and it was no surprise when the hosts’ second followed after a foul on Jay Tabb by Hayden Mullins. Aaron Cresswell’s pinpoint free-kick was headed in by the totally unmarked Chambers.
Town’s third followed just before the hour-mark, when Frank Nouble’s half-volley was charged down by two Birmingham defenders.
Murphy – having earlier had a header brilliantly saved - spun on the edge of the box and drove a low, powerful effort past Jack Butland.
Birmingham finally improved after the break, although by then the damage had been done. Mullins skied a sitter, Nathan Redmond had a couple of efforts saved by Scott Loach and then substitute Burke converted a late consolation after a cross from Shane Ferguson.
“In English football it’s all about playing with a high tempo, purpose and intensity,” said Birmingham boss Lee Clark. “But we were too flat to start with and that first-half performance is not what we’re about.
“I’m three stone overweight and even I could have gone out and played at that tempo.
“I was really frustrated because we contributed to our own downfall by conceding such crazy goals. Carlos Edwards’ strike was an unstoppable strike but we gave the ball away so cheaply. Our decision-making in the first half was very poor.”
SCREAMER: Luke Chambers, right, celebrates after scoring the second goal for Ipswich
MURPHY’S LAW: Daryl Murphy scores the third