MICK SAVOURS HIS FAST START
Tractor Boys enjoy best opening run since 2002
PSWICH Town manager Mick McCarthy hailed the performances of strikers David McGoldrick and Martyn Waghorn as Ipswich came from behind to beat Barnsley at Oakwell.
The duo came on in the second half to cancel out Tom Bradshaw’s early header and give the Tractor Boys their best start to a season since 2002.
“I was tempted to change it beforehand but I wanted to see the half out,” said McCarthy.
“My strikers deserve the credit. They sat on the bench, probably thinking they should be playing, but their response in the second half was brilliant.
“Hecky (Barnsley manager Paul Heckingbottom) got his tactics right against us in the first half. They had the better of the chances, we were lucky to get away with it. Bart Bialkowski kept us in it, certainly just before half-time with that one-on-one. He’s a wizard in the net. He’s unbelievable. I say he’s a wizard – he’s more like an octopus.”
Barnsley’s Bradshaw was eager to get on the scoresheet right from the kick-off as he had the first chance inside two minutes, but when George Moncur’s deflected shot fell kindly to him, he headed over.
However, the 25-year-old’s patience was soon rewarded when a misfired shot from Ryan Hedges found its way to him at the far post, and he nodded into an open net for his third goal of the season.
“I’m pleased with how Tom Bradshaw’s doing,” said Barnsley boss Heckingbottom. “He struggled to find the net in preseason but now he’s got two goals to his name. I’ll be using him and Ike Ugbo more this season.”
Two minutes before the conclusion of the first half, Bradshaw ran free of the Ipswich defence and turned provider as he set up Moncur to unleash a low drive that was expertly saved by Bialkowski to deny Barnsley a two-goal lead.
McCarthy decided to inject more experience into his team for the second half by bringing on veteran striker McGoldrick and ex-Rangers man Waghorn. And they both turned the game on its head.
McGoldrick, who already has two goals to his name after scoring a double at Luton in the Carabao Cup on Tuesday, turned in Jonas Knudsen’s left wing cross with a powerful volley to level the scores.
And with 20 minutes to play, Waghorn found himself through on goal and the prolific scorer was in no doubt where he was going as he confidently slotted the ball into the bottom righthand corner.
Barnsley’s best chance to salvage a draw fell to Ugbo, the 18-year-old striker on loan from Chelsea, but he struggled to get on the end of a good delivery.
And Heckingbottom said he was disgusted to lose in such a manner after performing well in the first 45 minutes.
“I just feel deflated,” he said. “I thought we would have done enough to win the game but we came unstuck in the second half.
“The sickening thing about getting beat like this is they had two shots on goal and we had plenty more in the first half.
“We did more in that first half to win the game but this result tells us that isn’t good enough in this league and we have to do better.”
BACK OF THE NET: Ipswich’s Martyn Waghorn, inset, celebrates after scoring the second