Cook: If You Want to Be Here, We Need to See More

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Cook: If You Want to Be Here, We Need to See More

Monday, 12th Apr 2021 12:16 Manager Paul Cook says the Blues players to step up to the plate a lot more than they have been doing if they want to stay at the club ahead of what he believes will be exciting times under the Blues new ownership. Asked about the mood among the squad at the present time, whether theyre feeling edgy and a bit of pressure, Cook said: I dont think they feel the pressure, Ive got to tell you. I think we do what it says on the tin. Were very honest, were organised, were committed, we lack quality going forward, were desperate for lads to step up to the plate. For these players today, being out of contract will affect some of them, and rightly so. New ownerships coming in, it will be exciting times in terms of investment into the team, players coming in. What I crave for is some of our players who are here now to step up to the plate a lot more than you have been doing because if you want to be here, we need to see more. Cook says no ones approached him to talk about their contract situation with 20 players having their terms coming to an end this summer with seven young players already having been told they can move on. No, not really, he said. As you can imagine, I try and be as honest as I can with you guys, and I give the same honesty with them in the players dressing rooms, changing rooms. When you want to be successful, as you know yourselves, youve got to work hard and youve got to sacrifice and youve got to do a lot. What you see on a Saturday afternoon is only the stage performance of what people have rehearsed and practised. Some of the stuff Ive seen behind the scenes, the training loads, the output of players on the football pitch and stuff, were off the pace. We hold our hands up, and Im involved in that as manager of this club, were off the pace. Going forward we demand more. And that will be a demand from the players that comes to myself and the staff because we have to be better. Any questions you want to ask me now, lads, I cant really answer. Ive been as honest enough as I can be, I have a burning desire to be in the play-offs and the players have got to have the same ambitions and desires as well.

If not, then the reality is that the season will peter out. Well all be left with a tinge of I thought Paul Cook would have done better. Paul Cook would have thought someone else would have done better and that pass the parcel of blame will go on. I dont live in those blame cultures, me. I believe that we have to deliver and thats my way. Can you put your finger on why Town arent scoring enough goals? Im not going to discuss it greatly because if you go into the goals scored column for the season, I think were third-bottom, arent we? Youre going to get into a problem thats been here for a long time. The reality is then, for a manager, you want to start throwing players under the bus. I dont work like that. The reality is that free-scoring teams score goals regularly, teams that dont, dont. You look at systems weve played this year, were probably one of the clubs in the division that have probably played every system you can play in football in pursuit of trying to gain success. Eventually, it comes down to calibre of player in your football club.

Asked whether hes surprised at how difficult it has been since he came in, Cook wasnt keen to get into the discussion. Again, youre going to take me to places I just dont want to go because youre going to get me to criticise the players, which I will not do, he said. As a football club, when you play for top clubs, you either deliver or you leave. There is no other apartment available, theres no other platform. For us going forward, weve got to be careful now because our players get told continually that theyre not good enough, that they dont deliver. I would imagine if the lads are on social media, theyll probably come off social media because the criticism they get. We have the same press conference every week and speak about the same problems every week. Thats why I havent done press a couple of times because Id be speaking about the same problems. Hopefully we can cure it, we can go and win a couple of games, if thats 1-0, so be it. But as a manager youve got to focus on the team, how can we improve. Can I help the team? At the minute the team is very, very solid, very, very well-organised and disciplined defensively but going forward its lacking creativity, lacking quality and lacking numbers in the box. I hope thats nearly answered your question! The best way to instil some positivity is to get a couple of wins. Again, were just going over the same ground. Weve got seven games to go. If we were to win a number of games wed be in the play-offs. If we could win a play-off semi-final, wed possibly be playing at Wembley in front of some Ipswich Town fans. I dont know how you feel about that, but Im actually getting little goose pimples on my arms thinking about it. So why not? He added: What do we all think we can learn about our players tomorrow evening that we dont already know? Youre looking for me to be some sort of absolute magician, but Im not. But the truth is that weve been away to Blackpool and won, weve been away to Hull and won, weve have strong performances at home. Weve had really good performances when people didnt think we would. At the minute, if you look at the last few games, Rochdale, Wigan and MK Dons, by drawing games, if any of those games had been a 1-0 victory to Ipswich, the margin for success would have been greater. And theyre the small margins Im trying to change as a manager. I cant make wholesale changes to make us better. But Ive got to stick with the plan that we are what we are, but within being what we are, can we be successful at what we are. Thats the big challenge for me and the staff. While the Blues are third from bottom in a goals scored League One table, 41, at the other end only four sides have conceded fewer than the 38 shipped by Town. But thats not much of a consolation to Cook: Not really because I like my teams to attack! I like chances, I like fans to enjoy watching the team get numbers forward. Youre getting involved in debates about full-backs. Theres no time for those debates. Weve got Luke Woolfenden playing in a right-back/right-sided position and hes a centre-half, and hes doing great in the functioning of the team. Is that what we want going forward? Not a prayer. Not a chance. Is it making us solid at the minute? Yes, it is. So weve got to keep believing in what were doing, albeit if youre looking at one television programme today, its not the one well be watching tomorrow, 100 per cent.

Photo: Matchday Images

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Trac70 added 12:37 – Apr 12

I like Cookie. Talks a lot of sense. Let’s hope he’s laid people’s fears to rest about his future and move onwards and upwards whether that be this season or next. COYB. 2

cromwellblue added 12:38 – Apr 12

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Glad to see the comments from Paul Cook today. Had my concerns on the silence.

Remain in the belief we have good manager. Cleary not happy with the squad and there performance levels but won’t publicly criticise them.

The message is right, step up or you’re gone.

Such a stark contrast to Lambert and his perpetual efforts to convince us the team were good. The player have had a far to easy ride for a long time.


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Blue_75 added 12:40 – Apr 12

Very honest and factually correct assessment!

Goals win games and unless Norwood is playing were not at the races!

We need at least 3 quality strikers in the squad. We were linked with Clarke-Harris and Wyke in the summer, theyre 1st and 2nd in the scoring table and look where their teams are!

Cool knows what needs to be done in the summer.

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IPSWICHMOUSE added 12:42 – Apr 12

“Eventually, it comes down to calibre of player in your football club.…..EXACTLY…..So cannot wait for the Summer clear out tbh…..COYB…ITID


Dockerblue added 12:43 – Apr 12

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Definately the right man to take us forward. The last 3 seasons have been poor, a direct result of Hurst and his terrible transfer dealings. The players have been left in no doubt what the deal is, deliver or pick up your p45! What clubs would take most of them? They need to have a long hard look at themselves because the alternative to live at Ipswich Town is a whole lot worse, it certainly won,t be as comfortable as they,ve had here. 1

BlueySwede added 12:57 – Apr 12

I like Paul Cook and I believe he is the man to take us forward. However, some of his answers remind me somewhat of Paul Lambert, its not in the same manner, but there is a hint of passive agressive answers towards the media. Also, answers like “Again, youre going to take me to places I just dont want to go because youre going to get me to criticise the players, which I will not do,..well, actually that answer in itself is a huge critisism of the players. I do find it a bit worrying that none of the players have shown a sparkle, lifted themself since the change of manager. 1

Pencilpete added 12:59 – Apr 12

It’s only one of two things.

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1. the players are massively underperforming and don’t want to be here since nobody can get a tune out of them

2. they are simply not good enough

i think the truth is somewhere inbetween the two – they arn’t as bad as they are playing at the moment but they arn’t as good as they think they are – Dozzell, Bishop, Downes and Woolfenden have been played for way too long on their ‘talent’ and ‘ability’ without ever really showing it on a regular basis, Jackson has ability but lacks effort … Sears, Skuse and Chambers are way too comfortable – others like Toto, Edwards, Hawkins, Drinan work hard but lack ability and James Norwood is just a gobsh1te who is always injured and still wishes he was at Tranmere and thinks its OK to slag off a club legend like Mick Mills on twitter. What doesn’t help is that Lambert and now Cook protect them from critisism and i think some of the senior players have too much of an influence …. all of that added together makes what we have out on the pitch every week. 0

dirtydingusmagee added 13:00 – Apr 12

says the right things, recognises whats wrong,just be glad to see it all converted into action, so far there has not been any sign of life in the team .Cook can only try to get the team to perform,but you cant make a banquet for a king out of a tin of beans. 3

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Michael101 added 13:10 – Apr 12

It’s about time these so called players had there backsides kicked .been in cruise control mode far to long . 2

blueboy1981 added 13:12 – Apr 12

The easy Club to play for image has to be banished once and for all at the end of this season.

Weve even had players leave, and quote nothing was expected of them at Ipswich – now that says it all.

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A new era has to begin – and Cook is PC is the man to take us forward.

Onwards and Upwards Paul Cook – were on the right road at last.

Come on you Blues. 2

Cakeman added 13:18 – Apr 12

Well said that man. How refreshing to have a manager that wont paint a politicians picture. 0

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pennblue added 13:22 – Apr 12

The reality is, when the game finished on Saturday, Paul Cook was thinking exactly the same as us. It is as frustrating for him as it is for us, that the players just don’t seem to be up for the fight. I can’t understand it myself, I mean, it is fundamentally what sport is all about, trying to win, and if they haven’t got that in them, then quite what they are doing playing football I don’t know. 0

Barty added 13:31 – Apr 12

In all honesty there are very few of our players worth keeping. We need a major clear out in the summer , some serious investment and that will lead to some long overdue optimism. Good luck Paul. 0


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