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New Boss Hurst Looking to Add Wingers to Town Squad
Tuesday, 12th Jun 2018 16:52

New manager Paul Hurst is targeting two wingers as part of his plans to put his own stamp on the side he has inherited from predecessor Mick McCarthy.

Hurst revealed today: “One thing I don’t mind saying publicly is that I don’t think we have, in terms of balance, wingers. I like wide players and I like players to carry the ball up the pitch.

“The only time I played here the lad who got the standing ovation [Jamal Campbell-Ryce] was a winger. Maybe he needed a bit more of an end product etc, but he definitely caught the eye at times and was a good player on his day.

“As fans we like those players because they can get us off our seats and excite people. There has to be an end product and I had a couple of lads last season [Alex Rodman and Shaun Whalley] who, in terms of goals scored and assists, contributed to the team.

“They also did the other bits and there was clear evidence that they were contributing. There’s no point in beating three players and then kicking it behind the goal.

“You might get a little round of applause but if you keep doing that it will soon stop. That’s an area where I’m keen to bring a couple of players in.”

Hurst has already appointed a new fitness coach in Nathan Winder and added: “I’m very pleased to welcome Nathan, who has worked at Barnsley and Leeds. He comes very highly recommended by Paul Heckingbottom [who managed both clubs last season].

“He’s another Yorkshireman but we’re not trying to take over the area, it’s just important that you click with people. Speaking to him in terms of how he works, he is very much aligned to what we did last season and what we’ll be looking to introduce here.”

Town also need a goalkeeping coach following Malcolm Webster’s decision to retire at the end of last season but Hurst revealed that Darren Smith will be working with the keepers in pre-season and could land the role on a longer-term basis.

Meanwhile, Hurst outlined to supporters his preferred style of play, adding: “You speak to people and depending what roles they are in they talk about it being about more than just winning. I’m not going to sit here and lie to anyone – I like winnings games of football because that brings you success.

“There are different ways of winning and we like to try to pass the ball whenever possible and we like to press. I’m bored with watching games on TV where players have the ball and no one is willing to go and press them. They’ve got so much time on it – it’s like watching a game of chess. If I wanted to play chess that’s what I’d do.

“I want to play football, I want it to be high energy and I want it to be exciting wherever possible. What I would say is that there are some very good teams in this league and I’m sure we will have days where they will have good spells of possession and we can’t get close to them.

‘It might need a slightly different approach but we’ll be positive and win, lose or draw I want to come off knowing that the players have given me and the fans everything. If we do that I think we can all live with a little bit of disappointment a little bit easier. But hopefully we’ll have a lot of good days.”

Hurst also addressed the issue of the club’s academy and efforts to maximise its potential by increasing the number of graduates who make it through to the senior squad. He said: “In terms of blooding youngsters and the production line I think that’s still happening to a degree.

‘Whether or not they have quite established themselves, or made the club lots of money, might be slightly different.

“There are still a lot of young players who have come through here. In terms of the link between first team and academy we’re all on the same side. I don’t understand why there wouldn’t be a close link.

‘I like to wander around the training ground and have a look at all the teams and everyone who is working there. I want everyone to feel part of this football club and, if they want to refer to it that way, be part of my team.

“I’m told there are a lot of players who have come through and others who were given debuts towards the end of the season.

‘What I would say is this – they’ve got to be good enough. I haven’t made any promises that we’re going to play X amount of players just so it looks good because I’ll be gone before anyone else. They’ve got to prove they are good enough and at the same time, if I believe they are good enough, age won’t be an issue.

“It’s the same at the other end if some of the older lads are worried. The way players look after themselves has changed and if they are performing their careers can be prolonged. There is a lot of talk about younger players but you have to have a balance in my opinion and that’s what I will be looking for.”

Hurst confirmed everyone would start afresh when the players return for pre-season training later this month and added: “People respond to different managers, different voices, a different formation. While I have done my research and I’ve watched quite a lot of games there’s still part of me not drawing a line or saying ‘I’m not working with him’ or ‘he’s not good enough’.

“Let’s give them a little bit of an opportunity. If [assistant manager] Chris [Doig] and I very quickly see a similar trend happening that we don’t like, that player will either move on or have to attempt to change very quickly to improve and show he can be part of our plans moving forward.”

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itsonlyme added 17:00 - Jun 12
I think everyone knows now what to expect from PH and it all sounds good!

Steelmonkey added 17:08 - Jun 12
Very promising words from the new man, it would be great to have the team playing the way he is outlining, and if he is after a couple of wingers then I'm feeling very pleased at that prospect too.
Welcome to PR Paul and Chris, I hope your reign here is successful, COYB'S.

positivity added 17:19 - Jun 12
interesting comment on wingers.
mick stumbled on the wing-back formation, which played to the strengths of players like kenlock, knudsen (as a lcb), chambers (more cover) and wbster (more license to roam), was interested to see if it'd suit cotter & emmanuel too.
good news for rowe, might finally get a chance...

midastouch added 17:21 - Jun 12
He's speaking my language here, love watching a tricky winger work some magic. Sometimes they can frustrate the life out of you when they go missing but when they pop up with a moment of magic that can change the outcome of a match, it's well worth paying the entrance fee for.

warktheline added 17:28 - Jun 12
Breath of fresh air, so it is!

norfolkbluey added 17:40 - Jun 12
I wish Paul and his assistant every success. Who wouldn't being a true blue. I have waited four years for this appointment. He will certainly have experience with working with players of the present team's abilities and their potential. Good luck chum.
I think you will quickly draw your own conclusions!

jas0999 added 17:42 - Jun 12
Like this a lot. Obvious to all but MM that the balance of the team was wrong. We desperately need wingers and arguably another striker ... a Murphy. But for me we are very short of centre backs.

norfolkbluey added 17:44 - Jun 12
One further point. I am so glad you have spotted the obvious weakness in the team. Finding exciting wingers is a must as our forwards have been starved of support in terms of decent crosses from wide areas.

runningout added 17:50 - Jun 12
Jones at Coventry will be a wanted winger by a few for next season

therein61 added 18:16 - Jun 12
We signed plenty of wingers in the past 5 1/2 years but they didn't get a look in, hopefully this will change. wishing you all the best Paul give us all something to look forward to each week.

terryf added 18:29 - Jun 12
A winger or two would be great to see, but we also need another centre back (Carter - Vickers on loan if he's available) and I agree with Jas0999, another striker. If and when McGoldrick goes we'll be pretty light up top.
Thought Paul Hurst came over very well and was pleased he wants to play a passing and pressing game. The long ball brigade better beware otherwise they'll only be part of our history.

deano85 added 18:52 - Jun 12
“They’ve got so much time on it – it’s like watching a game of chess. If I wanted to play chess that’s what I’d do.”

I like this guy...

dirtydingusmagee added 21:16 - Jun 12
sounds very promising, definitely talking the talk, if he and team can walk the walk, We can look forward to the good times returning .COYB

Lathers added 21:19 - Jun 12
Haven’t seen genuine wingers running at defenders at PR for a decade at least. Apart from Lawrence and Celina in bursts, we haven’t seen positive, front foot football at the club for far too long. Good luck to PH on trying to bring that back, it will be great to see.

leftie1972 added 21:41 - Jun 12
I reckon we could get Darren Bent and Yaya for a tenner a week each, neither are wingers but they’d bring the fans back. Bent still has goals in him!

armchaircritic59 added 22:01 - Jun 12
I'm a big fan of the "pressing" game. To me it's simple, if as a player, would you rather have time on the ball, or have one or two opponents in your face, whenever you get it? If anyone can find a video or two of the great mid seventies Dutch side, you'll see the most astonishing form of pressing you'll ever be likely to see. Three players rushing to confront the opponent on the ball, and another three rushing to cut off the various passing angles! I'm not expecting that, but i like what i hear from PH.

As for wingers, i'm more of a fan of wing backs, but if PH can come up with a couple of wide gems, i'll not complain. It certainly would be ironic if we ended up getting some success with the same formula that was successful for MM at Wolves! In closing, the very best of luck to PH & CD. Hope the walk round the Portman Road corridors has inspired you both!


Pencilpete added 13:17 - Jun 13
Is anyone else not amazed that PH has seen in a few DVDs on his flight home what was painfully obvious to everyone but Big Mick for the last 5 years?? !!

braveblue added 15:04 - Jun 13
So refreshing. Some of the proper blokes will be worried. No more selection based on dressing room presence I suspect. MM signed many wingers whilst here. But hardly gave any a chance. Hope this works better.

wayway added 20:48 - Jun 13
Hopefully no more stupid bloody nicknames

kingcarloss added 20:59 - Jun 14
In my opinion we should be going after Richard Wright to be our new goalkeeping coach, just moved back to the area after leaving Man City, for me its a no brainer and I'm sure he'd jump at the chance. Played at the highest level, one of our own. The lad who's looking after our keepers now surely has less experience than the keepers he's allegedly coaching to be better.

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