Mick McCarthy to depart Ipswich Town after six years in charge

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McCarthy taking in Dundalk's Europa League game with AZ Alkmaar in Tallaght in 2016. Credit: Michael P Ryan

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Ipswich Town have confirmed that Mick McCarthy will step down from his position as manager at the end of his contract this summer.

The former Republic of Ireland boss has spent the past six seasons in the Portman Road hotseat and helped the club escape relegation in his first season before guiding them to the play-offs the next.

However McCarthy's relationship with the fans has become strained in recent years, and owner Marcus Evans revealed on Monday an announcement would made about the manager's future.

Assistant manager Terry Connor – who has assisted McCarthy since 2008 at Wolverhampton Wanderers – will also leave the club when his contract expires in the summer.

“It never got to the point where we actually talked about a new contract,” Evans told the club's official website.

“It just felt right that it was time for us both to look at different options.

“When Mick arrived, we looked to be on the way to relegation. He saved us from that and then took us to the Play-Offs within two years.

“In his six years here he has made us a very competitive club in what is a very competitive league. No one looks forward to playing Ipswich.

“He has also been instrumental in developing our youth policy and has overseen the progress of a number of our young players from the academy into the first-team and nurtured their development in line with the club’s strategy.”

McCarthy added: “I had a good discussion with Marcus and we feel this is the right thing to do for me and for Ipswich Town.

“I have loved my time here and I am proud of what I have achieved over the last six years - and the relationship I have enjoyed with the players and all the staff at the club in that time.

“I won’t be leaving with any regrets. I have given everything for Ipswich Town and I will see out my contract in the same way.”

After a playing career that saw him win 57 international caps – as well as competing at the European Championships in 1988 and World Cup in 1990 – McCarthy took his first step into management with Millwall in 1992.

He took the club to a play-off semi-final in 1994 before leaving to take control of the Ireland national team following the departure of Jack Charlton in 1996.

McCarthy gave international debuts to the likes of Robbie Keane and Damien Duff, and steered the nation to the World Cup in 2002 in Japan and South Korea, where Ireland reached the second round.

Following a disappointing start to the 2004 European Championships campaign, McCarthy resigned and was appointed Sunderland manager shortly after.

He was relegated in his first season as Sunderland boss but took them back to the top level in 2005, but was sacked before the conclusion of the following season.

McCarthy took over at Wolves the following season and guided them to the play-offs in his first season before eventually taking them to the Premier League in his third.

He kept the West Midlands side at the top level for two consecutive seasons for the first time in the club's history before being relieved of his position near the end of the following season.