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Town Confirm Cook Appointment
Tuesday, 2nd Mar 2021 12:06

Town have confirmed the appointment of Paul Cook as manager on a contract which runs until the summer of 2023.

“I’m delighted to announce that Paul Cook is our new manager,” Town owner Marcus Evans told the club site.

“He has a proven track record in getting clubs promoted and importantly, not only knows the challenges League One presents but also has experience of working in the Championship and getting back to that level remains our primary focus.

“He took Wigan up to the Championship in his first year, kept them up and they would have comfortably finished in mid-table last season if it wasn’t for their points deduction.

“In our conversations, he has shown a great desire to become our next manager and I have been impressed by his ideas and ambitions to help take Ipswich Town forwards and I look forward to working with him as we strive firstly to return to the Championship.

“He knows he will be working with a squad of players that is as good as any in this division and I believe Paul will bring the energy, the enthusiasm and the experience that can fully enhance our promotion aspirations.

“As well as having a history - and ongoing desire - of developing a winning formula, his teams have played in a style which is totally in line with the club’s ambitions to develop an Ipswich Town playing ethos.

“I’m sure our supporters will give Paul a great welcome - albeit from afar at the moment - and get right behind him and the players as we enter what promises to be an exciting conclusion to the season.”

Cook will be in the stands at Accrington this evening to watch his new players in action against a club where he was both a player and a manager. He will take training for the first time tomorrow.

“First I want to wish Paul [Lambert] and Stuart [Taylor] all the best for the future. I know them both and it’s a hard business, football,” Cook added.

“It’s been a quick turnaround with Zoom meetings with the owner but Marcus has given me the opportunity to manage what is a great football club and that is a massive honour for me and my family.

“I’m proud to be in this position and I’ll be doing everything possible to repay the faith Marcus has shown in me.

“Winning promotion this season is the immediate target. It will be a big challenge but it’s a challenge that everyone at the club has a part to play in.”

TWTD reported in January that Cook had been spoken to by current owner Marcus Evans as he looked at his options with Paul Lambert’s position looking increasingly precarious.

Cook had been the favourite for the boss’s job at Portman Road since the end of last week with his appointment linked to the US-backed takeover.

Kirkby-born Cook was a central midfielder in his playing days, starting his career with non-league Marine before moving on to Wigan, Norwich for a short spell in the 1998/89 season, Wolves, Coventry, Tranmere, Stockport, Burnley (initially on loan), another stint with Wigan on loan and finally Accrington Stanley.

Cook moved into management with Southport in June 2006 but departed Haig Avenue the following January.

In April 2007 Cook took charge of League of Ireland side Sligo Rovers. Having guided Rovers to fourth and a European place, he left by mutual consent in January 2009 only to return 13 days later.

Despite tight finances, Cook saw Sligo to the 2009 FAI Cup final but they were beaten 2-1 by Sporting Fingal.

However, in 2010 they did carry off some silverware, the League Cup, then they followed that up by an on-penalties victory over Shamrock Rovers in the FAI Cup the same season and retained the trophy the following season via another win on spot-kicks against Shelbourne.

In February 2012 Cook took charge of Accrington but having finished 14th in League Two in 2011/12 he departed in the October when he took charge at Chesterfield.
"Cook took the Spireites to the League Two title in 2013/14 and then the following year to sixth and a play-off place in League One.

That success led to his move to Pompey in May 2015 and two years later he guided the Hampshire side to the League Two title.

In May 2017, Cook was named manager of Wigan following their drop into League One and led them to the title in 2017/18 as well as FA Cup shocks against Premier League West Ham, Bournemouth and Manchester City as they reached the quarter-finals.

He resigned in July last year following the Latics’ administration, resultant 12-point deduction and relegation to League One. Without the points deduction they would have finished 13th.

Overall at his six clubs as a manager Cook’s win percentage stands at 43.1.

After leaving Wigan, Cook had been linked with a number of jobs in the Championship, among them the positions at Cardiff City, which he is understood to have turned down, and Sheffield Wednesday.

Cook becomes the 18th Blues manager of the professional era and the fourth named Paul during the Evans era. Fans will hope Cook can bring the success which eluded Messrs Jewell, Hurst and Lambert.

As previously reported, former Blues winger Gary Roberts, coincidentally a player with tonight’s opponents Accrington, is set for a role on the staff, while ex-Town forward Noel Hunt has also been under consideration for a position with previous members of Cook's backroom team currently in jobs.

Leam Richardson, his assistant with Portsmouth and Wigan, is the caretaker-manager of the Latics, while his first team coach while with the Lancastrians, Anthony Barry, is now assistant head coach at Chelsea. Keeper-coach Nick Colgan is working at Nottingham Forest.

General manager of football operations Lee O’Neill yesterday confirmed that current caretaker-manager Matt Gill and keeper-coach Jimmy Walker are set to stay at Town.

Photo: ITFC

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Swailsey added 12:07 - Mar 2

USA added 12:07 - Mar 2
Welcome aboard!

Bergholtblue added 12:08 - Mar 2
Welcome aboard and good luck.

Paulc added 12:09 - Mar 2
For the sake of all the Pauls in the world. Please prove you are not a chump!

Welcome to TOWN!

OwainG1992 added 12:10 - Mar 2
Fantastic decision.
Genuinely feel really a huge amount of positivity is incoming.

DebsyAngel added 12:11 - Mar 2
Welcome to the club, Paul! Let's hope you can do the business where so many other Pauls have failed! I am pleased about him being here.

Dissboyitfc added 12:12 - Mar 2
Happy days!

So the next chapter begins!

Welcome Paul.

Chondzoresk added 12:12 - Mar 2
HMS Pi$$ the League now sets sail.......again. Welcome Paul Cook!

BlueArrow added 12:13 - Mar 2
Welcome Paul Cook think that this will be a recipe for success. I believe he's a good egg but will give the players a roasting if they don't perform. I suppose the proof of the pudding will be in the eating.

Ipswichbusiness added 12:14 - Mar 2
Welcome to our Club! Your CV is impressive. I wish you more luck than all your five permanent predecessors put together!

Your contract is quite short at just over two years ...

brendenward35 added 12:14 - Mar 2
Welcome PC to our wonderful club, make sure you sign up to TWTD as there so many people on here that will give you advice as they think they know it all lol. Get a good run going and we could do better than most think fresh start and good run of results needed and you never know where it will take us, Best of luck Paul and the team tonight

coolcat added 12:14 - Mar 2
Good news! Great decision. Experienced Manager in lower leagues with good track record.

BlueBlood90 added 12:15 - Mar 2
Welcome aboard Paul.

By far the best candidate of all the managers which were available in my opinion!

It's so nice to feel some positivity about ITFC again!

spanishblue added 12:16 - Mar 2
Play off final at Wembley, any chance of ticket missed the Barnsley one and the second leg against Bolton,dumb time to book a holiday

Paulc added 12:16 - Mar 2
Also if you ever get the sack, can i have your bench wear please as I have the same initials!

Hopefully that will be a long time in the future and will have a lot of stars on it too.

missingsuffolk added 12:16 - Mar 2
Feels like a huge weight lifted. Fantastic...

Hoofball added 12:17 - Mar 2
Great news !
Welcome to Portman Road Mr Cook !

TractorFrog added 12:17 - Mar 2
Great signing. He won League 1 with Wigan, and this is exactly what we want to do. COME ON IPSWICH!

90z added 12:18 - Mar 2
Happy with this! Welcome Paul!

brassy added 12:18 - Mar 2
well buh welcome to town give it your best shot is all i ask C.O.Y.B.

81Legends added 12:19 - Mar 2
Well done Marcus. Cookie is a top man and a perfect fit for us. A good day for the Town.


Pencilpete added 12:21 - Mar 2
brilliant appointment

muhrensleftfoot added 12:22 - Mar 2
Good luck Paul. I wish you success for all of us fans who have put up with poor fare and no success for more years than I care to remember

Bluearmy_81 added 12:23 - Mar 2
Incredible most of you seem to think this will fix everything. Hopefully this is a precursor to the takeover because without Evans leaving too not enough will change, PC isn't a miracle worker...

Sebastian added 12:23 - Mar 2
Welcome Paul!

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