Steve Evans clarifies his comments about Ipswich Town

Leeds United Crest

Leeds United head coach Steve Evans says that he respects Ipswich Town.

Leeds United head coach Steve Evans has told talkSPORT that his recent comments about Ipswich Town were misinterpreted.

Earlier this month, Leeds suffered a 2-1 defeat to Ipswich away from home at Portman Road in the Championship.

After the match, Evans was quoted as saying by The East Anglican Daily Times: “If that’s the benchmark (for sixth) then I’ll take that benchmark.”

Ipswich finished sixth in the Championship last season and qualified for the playoffs.

The former Rotherham United manager’s remarks about the Tractor Boys were taken as an insult to Mick McCarthy’s side, but the Scot has clarified his comments.

Evans has made it clear that he meant his comments in a complimentary way, and that he respects the work that McCarthy has done at Ipswich.

“There was a specific incident recently when we played at Ipswich,” the Leeds head coach told talkSPORT. “I said after the game if Ipswich Town is the benchmark, then I will bring that challenge on, I will take it and respond to it.

“I meant that in such a complimentary way, a complimentary way, because Ipswich Town last year, in my opinion, were unlucky to lose over two legs with Norwich in the playoffs.

“I watched both games live. They have kicked on this year once again, no surprise to people in Championship football. Mick McCarthy has built an excellent side, lost one or two players, added some real quality and they are challenging again.

“So I come out as Leeds coach, I am disappointed with their performance. I then read blogs from people who were not at the game, who were not at the press conference, they then said that I was saying that’s a simple challenge to go and achieve.”

Leeds are 17th in the Championship table at the moment with 32 points from 27 matches, just eight points above the relegation zone.

Meanwhile, Ipswich currently find themselves seventh in the standings with 45 points from 27 games, level on points with Sheffield Wednesday, who are sixth and occupy the final playoff spot.

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