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Saints boss Ronald Koeman livid as McCarthy's men force replay woe

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Southampton manager Ronald Koeman shakes hands with Ipswich Town manager Mick McCarthy following the FA Cup, Third Round match at St Mary?s, Southampton. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday January 4, 2015. See PA story SOCCER Southampton. Photo credit should read: Chris Ison/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Editorial use only. Maximum 45 images during a match. No video emulation or promotion as 'live'. No use in games, competitions, merchandise, betting or single club/player services. No use with unofficial audio, video, data, fixtures or club/league logos.

Southampton manager Ronald Koeman shakes hands with Ipswich Town manager Mick McCarthy following the FA Cup, Third Round match at St Mary?s, Southampton. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday January 4, 2015. See PA story SOCCER Southampton. Photo credit should read: Chris Ison/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Editorial use only. Maximum 45 images during a match. No video emulation or promotion as 'live'. No use in games, competitions, merchandise, betting or single club/player services. No use with unofficial audio, video, data, fixtures or club/league logos.

Southampton manager Ronald Koeman shakes hands with Ipswich Town manager Mick McCarthy following the FA Cup, Third Round match at St Mary?s, Southampton. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday January 4, 2015. See PA story SOCCER Southampton. Photo credit should read: Chris Ison/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Editorial use only. Maximum 45 images during a match. No video emulation or promotion as 'live'. No use in games, competitions, merchandise, betting or single club/player services. No use with unofficial audio, video, data, fixtures or club/league logos.

Southampton manager Ronald Koeman admitted a replay was the last thing he wanted after his side were held to a 1-1 draw by Ipswich in the FA Cup third round.

It could have been worse for Saints, who trailed at St Mary's after Darren Ambrose's first-half header put the Championship club in front, but Morgan Schneiderlin equalised before half-time.

Despite dominating the second period, Koeman's team were unable to find a winner and must now travel to Portman Road next week in between Premier League trips to Manchester United and Newcastle.

"I don't understand why you say congratulations, we have to play the replay and that wasn't what I expected," Koeman said.

"Am I annoyed? Of course, because we can't make a lot of changes in the team and I don't like to make changes. I believe in playing the strongest team.

"What happens now next week I don't know. We have to play three away games, difficult ones, so we will see what happens."

Ten points in four games has lifted Koeman's side back into the top four but the Saints boss claimed he was fearful of Ipswich, who are currently second in the Championship.

Ipswich manager Mick McCarthy made six changes to his starting line-up but refused to bemoan next week's replay, insisting it should be possible to juggle league and cup success.

"I just said to the lads, 'well done, it's the last thing we really wanted' - but that was tongue in cheek," McCarthy said.

"I didn't want to lose, that's for sure, why can't we have a cup run as well?

Ipswich, one point behind Championship leaders Bournemouth, are on course for promotion to the top tier and McCarthy believes matching Southampton will give his players belief for the rest of the season.

"My players probably learned how tough it was playing against a Premier League team today and what quality they have," McCarthy said.

"They probably learned a bit about themselves as well and felt they could cope with it - that's as important as anything."


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