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Cook: Toto's Playing Well But We Need More From Him and Everyone Else
Thursday, 25th Mar 2021 11:59

Blues boss Paul Cook is delighted to again be working with centre-half Toto Nsiala, the pair having previously linked up at Accrington Stanley.

Cook was manager of Accrington for a short spell across two seasons in 2012 when Nsiala was initially loan from Everton before being signed on a permanent basis by the Blues boss.

“He’s a cracking lad, Toto,” Cook said of Nsiala, who turns 29 today. “He’s an absolute diamond of a young man. He really is. It’s great to see them grow up so much.

“When you get them so young, as we all were when we were young, we probably have different ideas, different thought processes, different mentalities to stuff.

“Toto’s career from leaving myself when I went to Chesterfield has been very good. The year we went up with Wigan along with Blackburn, Shrewsbury’s team under Paul Hurst was a very strong team with lads like Ben Godfrey.

“Toto’s had a good career, a solid career. I believe he’s playing very well for us at the minute. I think he’s one of the players that is doing really well.

“But we need more, we need more from Toto, we need more from every single player at this club.”

Nsiala has been ever present in the five games since Cook took charge.

Photo: Matchday Images

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Suffolkboy added 12:11 - Mar 25
Terrific , no misunderstanding about the levels of performance and commitment PC has and will enthusiastically demand .As a player it’s always good to receive first of all acknowledgement of current performance ,BUT equally encouraging to know coaches and Managers believe there’s more to come !
Everyone will respond to this sort of clarity ,enthusiasm and leadership .

Edmundo added 12:58 - Mar 25
We've had managers who can get players to believe they are better than they are. But hopefully PC will get them to be better, to work so hard that they become a cohesive team that plays better than the sum of their parts. So looking forward to the next few weeks and months...

ShropshireBluenago09 added 13:11 - Mar 25
Great Shrewsbury team that;
N’Siala, Ben Godfrey, Dean Henderson, Nolan,Greg Docherty

Sixto6 added 13:27 - Mar 25
Toto still worries me when he’s anywhere near the ball, he seems to have a look on his face that he hasn’t got a clue what’s going on !
Hopefully PC can get the best out of him.

Dissboyitfc added 13:30 - Mar 25
Good player at this level, the problem is his decision making and he makes a couple of poor decisions every game, sometimes game costing decisions as well! But great to hear PC state that more is expected of the players, lovely change to hearing PL saying how proud he was of the players and could ask for anymore!

heathen66 added 14:00 - Mar 25
I think one of Nsiala's main problems is that he is being left very isolated by a lack of RB for much of the time. He is a very good defender, but is being asked / forced to play a more footballing role and sometimes looks uncomfortable doing so.
This is where the full back or the holding midfielders should be offering themselves as a passing option (and not just give it straight back to him). When Toto gets the ball there are very few options other than hoof it aimlessly, which to his credit he seems reluctant to do.
Certainly someone we should persevere with IMO

PortmanTerrorist added 14:27 - Mar 25
heathen66 you got it spot on. Also think that some of the other players think Toto is Messi with the balls they put into him under terrible pressure. Defenders should not have to perform drag backs to get out of trouble and have watched Toto closely and seen him forced to do that almost regularly. It is a recipe for disaster and when (not if) it happens it should not be Toto's fault.

He is a solid and better than average defender at this level. End of !

algarvefan added 15:14 - Mar 25
Along with Wilson our best defender this season, the number of interceptions, tackles and headers he makes in huge, I always get a bit jittery when he is one on one beside someone in the box but he has done well this season and has benefited from a run in the side. Well done Toto.

Bazza8564 added 15:17 - Mar 25
Yes I agree with both these last two posts. Beckenbauer he isn't but he's solid honest and works hard.
Had no idea he was 29 though, thought he was much younger.
Im not sure he would be in a starting XI one division up but hes very useful cover at the very worst

Woodbridgian added 15:18 - Mar 25
Funny have every time Cook speaks he says he needs more from every player. Lambert used to say he couldn’t ask for any more from any players. Guess that explains why we are where we are!

spanishblue added 15:29 - Mar 25
Bill Shanklys famous words I believe football is a simple game just pass and move, much of our passing stops or slows our players up, Toto used to be a rough tough centre back, certainly lost his way when we got him, but he’s getting better but skillful he’s not

Steve_ITFC_Sweden added 16:02 - Mar 25
Toto might make the odd mistake, but he puts in the effort every time and does a lot of good work as well. Deserves respect.

PositivelyPortman added 16:08 - Mar 25
All the TWTD armchair managers have had a bit of a shock here.
Cook likes Toto the player - it’s there in black and white for you all to read and suck up.
Barely any of our current team are good enough for the Championship - except for Sears! 😂 so let’s just get on with it until the end of the League One season and see who goes/arrives.
If by some freak we did manage to get promoted to the Championship, I can envisage a complete clear out.

Marinersnose added 17:24 - Mar 25
Toto has shown an improvement since playing more regularly but for me he’s never going to be a footballing centre back . If this is where we are setting the bar then I think we have to accept that there will always be those lapses in concentration and rash tackles from behind. Those are the negatives but he’s a strong athletic lad who always gives his all. I personally thinks that Woolfenden is streaks ahead as a footballing centre back albeit he has suffered with his confidence under PL. He can definitely play at the next level but needs to work on his game and application. Cook is making the right noises imo and I believe he will be ruthless with his culling of players. He knows the style and setup he wants and will recruit the right players I’m sure.

chepstowblue added 17:35 - Mar 25
Certainly much improved, but I still feel there's an own goal or penalty concession whenever the ball is near him. Has all the attributes to be more than decent, though a change of pace alludes him and a lack of concentration at times seem the biggest problems. Iron those out and we've got a good solid wholehearted guy.

johnwarksshorts added 17:46 - Mar 25
Strong, no-nonsense defender, could improve on distribution and one on one with striker inside penalty area. I believe he'll get better under Cooks management.

TimmyH added 18:04 - Mar 25
Might as well go through the majority of the players that regularly start and say 'we need more from them'...the whole side needs to up their game if we're to get into the play-offs.

El_Fenix added 18:48 - Mar 25
Toto was awesome during the last half dozen games of the relegation season, playing against decent Championship teams. When he got injured during the next pre-season, it was viewed as a calamity. Unfortunately, when he came back, he was tentative and mistake-prone. This season he has been solid. With good man management from Paul Cook, and playing with KVY on his right, he may once again become awesome. With Flynn Downes struggling, Toto is currently my favourite ITFC player.

coolcat added 21:11 - Mar 25
Easy to drift into a rut which is what's happened here. Been like this for a long time. We've lost our way since coming down a league. Good to have a manager like Cook to raise morale & lift Town out of this as it's what's needed.

Jonaldo added 04:32 - Mar 26
I think Toto is worth a goal a game. He wins most that comes in the box in the air and throws himself in for some crucial blocks. His distribution is also excellent.

His one weakness is pace and he occasionally gets caught when we play a high line. So needs a pacey sweeper style Centre Half to play alongside.

As PC says, it's all about partnerships and probably you're Centre Halves and Centre Forwards compatibility/connectivity is the most important.

drewcudders1963 added 09:44 - Mar 26
Yup agree, Toto is a good defender but has been exposed by the lack of decent full backs at times.... he is often a disaster waiting to happen, but he he is gradually getting that out of his game [probably a confidence thing]..... he and Wilson should be our centre backs for the remainder of the season with KVY and Kenlock as full backs.... Chambers is a great guy and a fantastic ambassador for our club, but his best is passed I'm afraid and should be a back up to KVY and the centre backs..... I'd also get him on the touchline for each game to back up Cook in his vocal support of the team....

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