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Why this clinical forward can help take Mick McCarthy’s Ipswich Town to the next level



From the heights of sixth place in 2015 as well as seventh in 2016, the 2016/17 Championship campaign was somewhat underwhelming for Ipswich Town.

It has been widely viewed that manager Mick McCarthy had done a stellar job on a shoe-string budget to get the Tractor Boys in and around the play-off picture in recent years, yet this season wasn’t one of their best.

The Suffolk-based outfit finished 16th in the Championship with just 55 points from their 46 games, their lowest points tally since relegation from the Premier League back in 2002, in which time they won just 13 times, and lost on 17 occasions.

And one of their biggest issues was their lack of goals, netting a mere 48 times – less than all but one side who placed above them in the division, and only eight more than the two lowest scorers Wigan and Rotherham, both of whom were relegated.

So it’s perhaps not overly surprising to see the Tractor Boys in the market for a striker this summer, and one they are reportedly in the hunt for is Rangers’ Joe Garner.

The 29-year-old moved north of the border back in 2016 after a successful time in English football, and went on to net ten times for the Gers on their underwhelming return to the Scottish Premiership.

And he is a player that Ipswich boss McCarthy must try and land this summer, as Garner could certainly help take the Tractor Boys to the next level after a disappointing campaign this time round.

That’s because his goal-scoring record in England is pretty impressive.

Garner is best-known for his time at Preston, where he was on the books between 2013 and 2016, and it was here where he made a name for himself as a prolific goal-scorer by bagging 24 times in just 45 appearances in the 2013/14 campaign, before bettering that the season after by netting 27 goals.

And it’s these sort of numbers that Ipswich fans are crying out for, after seeing their top-scorer Tom Lawrence bag nine times this season, while their other forward options contributed minimally over the course of the campaign.

Freddie Sears scored just seven goals this term, David McGoldrick netted just five times in the league, and Brett Pitman found the net on only four occasions – those numbers aren’t good enough.

It’s fair to say that the departure of Daryl Murphy last summer hit Ipswich hard, as they just didn’t replace his goals.

The 34-year-old was another who performed well in England but didn’t quite have the same effect in Scotland earlier in his career, yet a move to Ipswich in 2011, first on loan and then permanently two years later, reinvigorated him, and he went on to become one of the best forwards in the division (hence Newcastle bought him last summer).

And there are parallels with Garner, who albeit may be slightly older than Murphy was when he moved to Portman Road, has the experience of English football in the bag, and may well feel as though he has something to prove south of the border.

Ultimately, McCarthy needs some reinforcements this summer after a frustrating season this term, and they could do a lot worse than bring Garner to Suffolk.

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: Why this clinical forward can help take Mick McCarthy’s Ipswich Town to the next level

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