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Cook: Norwood and Harrop Back But We Can't Wait For Season to End
Thursday, 29th Apr 2021 09:39

Striker James Norwood is back from injury and Josh Harrop from suspension ahead of Saturday’s away game against already-relegated Swindon but manager Paul Cook admits that everyone at Town is counting down the days to the end of the season.

Norwood has missed the last two games after suffering a recurrence of his hamstring problem in the 0-0 draw at Charlton, while Harrop, who is on loan from Preston, has been banned for the last three following his red card at Wimbledon.

“James is back, Josh Harrop’s back,” Cook said at his pre-match press conference. “There’s lads back in the squad.

“Again, at the minute, the training ground’s not a great place to be, as you can imagine, there’s so much negativity in the air and around the place. That’s quite normal.

“We can’t wait for the season to end now as a football club. The reality is that under me, and I’m not speaking about Paul [Lambert] before me or Paul [Hurst] before him, we have underachieved drastically in the last 13 games. Drastically.

“It’s very, very painful at the minute. It’s something I get envious of when I look at other clubs in play-offs etc, and wonder whether I could have done better, should I have done better, could I have made any other decisions that would have helped the players.

“The reality is that we’re in the position that we’re in and it’s something that we must face up to.”

Town are without a goal in 619 minutes of football - they last found the target via the now departed Alan Judge in the 2-1 victory over Bristol Rovers on April 2nd - with the last goal from a striker the Norwood’s at Portsmouth on March 20th.

Asked whether young striker Tyreece Simpson, who found the net in the U23s’ 2-1 victory over Nottingham Forest on Tuesday, might come into his thoughts as he looks to end the drought, Cook said: “One of the problems that I have, being brutally honest with you, because the first team is so ineffective, we look everywhere for help.

“The reality is that our U18s are doing terrifically well, our U23s are doing terrifically well and the first team aren’t very good.

“We’ve got to stop looking [at] younger players who may well not be ready, and Tyreece is doing great by the way, to come up and support the first team.

“We’ve got six mainline strikers at the club. The reality for us is there’s got to be an exit or an in door, you can’t keep chopping and changing and parking problems. The reality for us is going forward our problems will be dealt with before we look for solutions.”

Photo: Matchday Images

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poringlandblue added 09:47 - Apr 29
The first 18 to get down to Playford rd this morning with their boots are in the squad. There will be no shortage of effort or passion shown on the pitch, might even score a goal !!!!!

bobble added 09:48 - Apr 29
the manager cocked it up from week 2, and the players are a disgrace , they should be removed from all records that they ever played for us, and surely if they are not trying, then they are breaking their contracts and should not be paid anymore ?

is there any other job where you can decide not to work but still get paid handsomely ?

these players are scum...

PackwoodBlue added 09:50 - Apr 29
Tyreece looked strong and hungry against Forest, worth brining him on at some point Saturday I think. Would probably start with Hawkins and Norwood.

Suffolkboy added 09:55 - Apr 29
From the outside there has to be a whiff of suspicion that PC is part of the problem : and no smal wonder the training ground isn’t a pleasant positive place to be— OR that on the field performances reflect the chaos emphasised in the players minds !
We are where we are , we are who we are ,BUT contrast Pep Guardiola’s management techniques with those witnessed at PR ,and JUST maybe therein lies a tale !
ITFC need much much better man management , determined to get the most potential out of each and of the entire team which constitutes the playing side of ITFC .
A happy ,well motivated , disciplined and dedicated unit will not only win matches but win over supporters and the community !
Set to PC !

BlueBlood90 added 10:11 - Apr 29
The only way to find out if someone like Tyreese Simpson is ready is to give him a chance. If he's not ready then what have we lost? We've got three meaningless games to play so it's a great opportunity to throw a couple of them in and see how they get on without any pressure on them. If our first team can lose 3-0 against two relegation fodder sides then we don't really need to worry about how a few of our U23s will cope.

sospier added 10:12 - Apr 29
Whoever’s fault it is be it players chambers or PC one thing you never do is call players ‘scum’.That is an absolute disgrace to suggest that.

BlueandTruesince82 added 10:13 - Apr 29
You cant seriously be trying to compare Peps and Cook. Have Man C players been below par for 3 years?

Apples and oranges. That's an insane statement.

rfretwell added 10:18 - Apr 29
If the takeover hadn't happened things would probably be much happier at the traing ground. Suddenly we are are cash rich and hyper ambitious. Alot of the squad face very u certain futures for themselves and their families.

Radlett_blue added 10:20 - Apr 29
If we aren't going to give the likes of Simpson a go in a meaningless game like this, when will he ever get a chance?

Razor added 10:24 - Apr 29
Six mainline strikers-----you must be joking, 2 at best and they are never fit.

And why is he so desperate for season to end----it is all rubbish and negative largely down to him----he had a great chance with the fixtures as they were to at least get us in to the play offs and give us a bit of excitement.

Dont like the way this guy talks----seems very cosy and comfortable with the summer and spending loads of money----if he does not finish with 3 big wins even the cheeky chappie may be looking over his shoulder.

Juanforthemoney added 10:25 - Apr 29
Tell Harrop not to bother turning up.He hasn't so far!!

atty added 10:27 - Apr 29
Don’t see the point of playing loanees now. He should play the system he wants to play, with the players he wants to keep where he wants to play them, and make up any gaps best possible with young players.

Portman_Pie added 10:31 - Apr 29
Might as-well start with 10 men rather than let Harrop wear the shirt...

1RWR added 10:32 - Apr 29
poringlandblue: I smiled at your post then saw 2 people had given you a negative.......unbelievable!
I know we’ve all had enough of this season & can’t wait for it to end, but come on chaps, please lighten up, it’s called know......something funny that brightens up your day? No? Oh well I tried. Heavens above I’m near to giving up!😳😳😳

1RWR added 10:34 - Apr 29
atty: +1 for that.

haynes_toe1 added 10:38 - Apr 29
Probably about time Cook kept quiet on this stuff; and try to finish the season on a bit of a high. After all, we've been worse in every single aspect on the pitch since he was put in charge. To be worse than Lambert in every area takes some doing.

Phil1969 added 10:42 - Apr 29
You could play Neymar upfront he probably wouldn’t score. The issue is going forward as a team and creating chances. Cook has obviously identified this he just doesn’t seem to know what to do about it other than slate the team.
The really sad thing is we haven’t played well other than the odd game since the Autumn and yet we will finish only a handful of points outside the playoffs.
It’s an illusion to believe we can simply change the squad with up market players, even if the financial clout existed, the FFP rules simply won’t allow it.

ArnieM added 10:50 - Apr 29
I cant say I disagree with a single word that Paul Cook says on this matter. In fact I don't know why he's even bothering to speak about this complete shower of shyte for a first tea squad. They've clearly thrown the towel in because they're know they are not part of this Clubs plans going forward. Fine , f_ UCK off then to the lot of them , NOW. We don't want you in a Town shirt ever again. You're not fit to wear it .

BlueandTruesince82 added 10:51 - Apr 29
Or Cook an experiences manager has never seem such a lack of effort from any group of players, ever. Hence his anger.

He's not a naturally angry man nor is he known for digging our players so perhaps the more pertinent point is this lot must have done been dire to illicit this from him.

barrystedmunds added 10:52 - Apr 29
You and us, both!!!😞😞😞

BlueandTruesince82 added 10:55 - Apr 29
Our fans under Lambert.... "he's gas lighting us, doesn't he see how bad we are? Why can't he say it like it is?"

Our fans as soon as a manager says it like it is "he's thrown them under the bus, you shouldn't talk about the players like that"

Couldn't make it up

Gilesy added 10:59 - Apr 29
Yeah, but not necessarily the same fans saying those things!

Kickingblock added 11:18 - Apr 29
"The reality for us is going forward our problems will be dealt with before we look for solutions.”
I like the sound of that. 👍


rfretwell added 11:20 - Apr 29
Phil1969, theres no longer a squad salary cap but we are limited to an extent by the
Salary Cost Management Protocol. This limits EFL clubs to spending a max 60% of their regular income (match tickets, food, drink sales etc) PLUS 100% of their Football Fortune - eg owner injection of funds,( Cup income, transfer fees received etc).

invictablue added 11:32 - Apr 29
I’m staggered that some on this forum seem to genuinely think that PC should have had the ability to wave a magic wand and make a silk purse from a pigs ear. The stark truth is that we have been in progressive decline for years, and nothing short of a complete overhaul of both playing staff and structure will be sufficient to reverse the trend, and I take some comfort from the fact that the current regime at least have the balls to confront the issue head on and rebuild for the future.

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