Skuse: It's Been Very, Very Good
Thursday, 8th Nov 2018 16:34
New manager Paul Lambert’s training methods have been given the thumbs-up by experienced midfielder Cole Skuse, who is more confident than ever that Town can climb away from the bottom of the Championship and beat the drop.
Asked about ex-Norwich, Aston Villa, Blackburn and Wolves boss Lambert’s initial impact after succeeding Paul Hurst 12 days ago, Skuse said: “It has been very, very good. I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it before but I’m going through some coaching badges and doing bits and bobs myself. I’ve got a notebook at home that I keep notes in and the pages are filling up quite quickly.
“He’s been very good from day one; from the way he has conducted himself to the delivery of his presentations, both on and off the field, which have been top class.
“The coaches from the U23, U18 and U16 groups have sat in and watched stuff and they have come away thinking ‘We’re quite a way off where he is’.”
Skuse responded to the suggestion that the players looked far more ‘up for it’ in Lambert’s first game in charge, last weekend’s 1-1 home draw with Preston, than they had previously this season.
“I’m not speaking on behalf of everyone,” he said, “but from a personal point of view I’m up for every game and I try my utmost in every game.
“The lads here are very honest and I’m sure they would all say the same, but we went into the game with a bit of freshness.
“I don’t know if it was just new manager syndrome or the fact that our training sessions beforehand had been tapered differently, but I think it was clear for everyone to see.
“Even on the school run, when I was speaking to some of the mums and dads, they were saying it was a very good performance.
“You could see a lot of things, like the patterns we had been practicing, were coming off so on the whole we thought it was a very good performance.
“But as much as we could take some positives out of the game, we were disappointed not to get the three points.”
Does Skuse believe Lambert’s enthusiasm – he looked to be kicking every ball on the touchline during the Preston game – rubs off on the Town players? He added: “I feel it does but every manager is different – just like players, we’re not all cut from the same cloth – and they have their own styles with different traits and ways of doing things. He’s very animated and if he could he would probably like to still be playing.
“He wasn’t a bad player in his time, was he? He’s been there and done it as a player – and as a manager he has plenty of experience and success.
“I won’t be putting my League One promotion winner’s medal on the table alongside his Champions League medal – I think there’s only one winner there.
“He has been there and done it, and he has four or five T-shirts. I had a chat with him the other day about his qualifications, his coaching badges, and he was saying he did his in Germany. So a lot of his stuff is built around the way that other people do it in other countries. It’s very good and the details are spot-on.”
Lambert has made the most of his time during his early days at Town, this week inviting club legends Terry Butcher, George Burley and John Wark to meet him at the training ground, and he has also held one-to-one meetings with a number of today’s players.
Skuse explained: “He’ll call various people in, one by one, and have individual meetings, but most days we have had group meetings and they have probably gone on longer than he has anticipated they would.
“It’s because he is talking to people and having banter with them within the group, which has been very comical at times to be honest. He’s getting to know us, as well as we are getting to know him, and that doesn’t happen overnight. But it’s been all good.
“The belief that we can stay up has always been there and I’m not just saying that because I’m speaking to you now.
“We’re an honest group of boys, especially the senior heads, and if we see something isn’t going right the lads are more than willing to step in and say ‘Look, this can’t happen. This has got to be done’. But since he’s come in he has been nothing but positive and has given us a real boost.”
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