Mick’s quick to say it’s not all over just yet...

The Football League Paper - - CHAMPIONSHIP - By Adam Lawlor

MAN­AGER Mick Mc­Carthy re­fused to la­bel Ip­swich Town as com­pletely safe from rel­e­ga­tion de­spite their nar­row vic­tory away at Bur­ton Al­bion on Fri­day night.

An own goal from Luke Var­ney and one from Fred­die Sears put the Trac­tor Boys two goals to the good be­fore Lu­cas Akins slot­ted home a con­so­la­tion ef­fort for the hosts.

Ip­swich are now nine points clear of the rel­e­ga­tion zone with four games to go and while not count­ing his chick­ens just yet, Mc­Carthy knows the teams be­low will need some­thing spec­tac­u­lar to be catch his side now.

“I hope that’s us safe. I think it prob­a­bly is but I’m not go­ing to say that we def­i­nitely are,” ex­plained Mc­Carthy.

“It’s go­ing to be very hard for the clubs be­low us to catch us. We have leap-frogged Wolves and QPR now and the teams be­low us have all got to play each other.

“I’ve been study­ing the ta­ble and the fix­tures and with Black­burn and Wi­gan both win­ning, that added to the pres­sure go­ing into the game but we dealt with it well.

“I said to the play­ers that we have the hard­est game on Mon­day, against Newcastle, so get the job done here and they have re­sponded to that.”

Af­ter a goal­less first half, Tom Lawrence’s cor­ner was di­verted into his own net by Var­ney seven min­utes af­ter the restart to nudge the vis­i­tors in front.

And with just over ten min­utes to go Sears dou­bled their ad­van­tage, fin­ish­ing off a quick counter-at­tack at the sec­ond time of ask­ing.

Bur­ton were of­fered a way back into the match when Myles Ken­lock bun­dled over Var­ney in­side the penalty area and Akins stepped up to bury the spot-kick with four min­utes re­main­ing.

But it was too lit­tle too late and Brew­ers boss Nigel Clough felt his side, who are just two points above rel­e­ga­tion zone af­ter Black­burn beat Not­ting­ham For­est, con­trib­uted to their own down­fall.

“We are dis­ap­pointed to lose the game, cer­tainly and we con­trib­uted to it,” Clough said. “When you score an own goal, you don’t de­fend cor­ners and you score an own goal, it puts you on the back foot straight­away.

“If there’s one team not fazed by com­ing here, it’s Ip­swich. Their work-rate is ex­cep­tional and they re­ally work hard on clos­ing you down and stop­ping you play­ing.

“We couldn't deal with that.”

SICKENER: Luke Var­ney scores an own goal

STAR MAN FRED­DIE SEARS Ip­swich

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