Birmingham City will be hoping Harry Redknapp’s magic touch that staved off relegation last season will continue as the new Championship campaign kicks off.
The St Andrew’s men will travel to Ipswich Town on Saturday (August 5th) hoping for ex-Spurs and West Ham boss can build a strong foundation for a successful season..
Blues will need to revisit last season’s scouting report thought after the Tractorboys looked to rework their squad during the transfer window.
Midfielders Tom Adeyemi and Emyr Huws have come in from Cardiff City while former Rangers striker Joe Garner will give them a new threat up front. Manchester City winger Bersant Celina has moved to East Anglia on a loan deal.
Blues meanwhile have added Cheikh Ndoye, Marc Roberts, Dan Scarr and keeper David Stockdale to their ranks, with Redknapp no doubting hoping the latter’s experience of winning promotion to the Premier League with Brighton last term rubs off on the rest of his squad.
Ipswich will need to improve on last season’s showing against Birmingham City though after losing 2-1 at St Andrew’s in December 2016 – the last game of Gary Rowett’s tenure at Blues – before being held to a 1-1 draw at home in April thanks to a Jonathan Grounds goal.
But McCarthy will need to inspire his squad after branding his side’s 6-1 pre-season thrashing against Charlton Athletic as “a reality check”.