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Cook: To Go Away From Home and Win Was Important
Saturday, 1st May 2021 18:19

Boss Paul Cook felt it was important for the Blues to record their first away victory under his management away at Swindon, despite the result ultimately meaning nothing.

James Norwood scored twice, one a penalty, and later missed a second spot-kick, while ex-Blues frontman Brett Pitman netted for the home side. While Swindon are already relegated, Town have no chance of making the play-offs.

“You know yourselves, it’s going to be a difficult couple of games finishing off,” Cook said. “But to come away from home and win was important because you get criticisms levelled at you, the staff, myself, the players, and it hurts, it does hurt.

“Whatever we’ve offered up over the period, my period and the previous periods under other managers, it hasn’t been good enough for this football club, and I include myself in that.

“Going forward it will change. Whether it changes and we go and do great, that remains to be seen, but it certainly will change, that’s for sure.”

Town’s goal drought finally ended at 663 minutes, Cook having joked that he’d celebrate by taking his top off when the Blues finally found the net.

He didn’t go through with his promise, although someone in the dugout appeared to start to do so after Norwood’s 44th-minute penalty hit the net.

“It wasn’t me that for sure, if I’d have got my belly out, I’d been in trouble, wouldn’t I?” Cook joked.

“I was just pleased for the lads because this group of people now, they have been burdened for too long.

“Like I told them before the game, in a week’s time, all those burdens and shackles will come away from everyone. I’ll make everyone happy at the club.

“People who don’t want to be in Ipswich Town’s dressing room will not stay another day at the football club. We just want a team focused and desiring and aspiring to make us a better football club.”

Town had plenty of opportunities over the course of the game and could well have won very convincingly.

“I told Kane Vincent-Young, I’ve never seen anyone miss chances like him, by the way, he can miss them from three yards! How can he?” the Blues manager laughed.

“But it’s just pleasing because when you create chances you’re OK with what comes. It’s when we haven’t been creating them we’ve looked lacklustre.

“Today at times we’ve flirted into some really good situations where we played well and we opened Swindon up and that was great to see.

“The confidence should have been there to go on to win the game more comfortably, but unfortunately we let a poor goal in from our point of view which gave Swindon a little bit of energy.

“Credit to Tommy Wright and Swindon, when you’ve been relegated it’s tough to get motivated and stuff, and I felt they represented their club with real credit today, they kept going until the final whistle, and we’re pleased to get a win on the road.”

Norwood took his goals tally to nine in what’s been an injury-hit campaign for the ex-Tranmere man. Might it have been a different story for Town had he stayed fit?

“James needs supply,” Cook responded. “Even if you watched our youth team last night, the crosses and the penetration was coming from all angles. We haven’t had that.

“I can only speak under my time, the lack of creativity in the team has been a disappointment. I’m not levelling any criticism at the players but they should be… [heckling from U23s coach Kieron Dyer about the number of chances created today]. He was going to play soon, Kieron Dyer, the way he’s going, he’s nearly getting a start, him and Gary Roberts!

“But there’s no criticism now for the players, the next week or two will bring a lot of decisions and changes for our supporters and we want to look towards next season with real optimism with Mark Ashton coming in, our new owners coming in and we want the club to be really about the place.

“Let’s finish the season with as much pride as we can, let’s try and stay unbeaten, whatever that may bring, it brings, and then let’s look forward to a summer and a season next year where we can make the team hopefully represent the club in a better way probably than we’ve done over the last three years.”

Having ended a six-game run without a victory, he added: “Winning’s everything, winning in football is huge and you’ve got to want to win. You’ve got to create moments to win and you’ve got to take chances when they come.

“Again, for our flair players, and I keep giving them the same messages, managers want to trust players, but to trust a player he’s got to deliver stuff. And if you want to play for big clubs nowadays, the reality you must either create and score goals in flair positions or have defensive solidity. And that’s something that you’ve got to get right at both ends of the pitch.”

Was today’s display a taste of what fans can expect from his team in the future? “In my career I’ve sometimes been criticised for not having a Plan B and I’ve always thought that if you’re very good at Plan A, why should you change it?

“And it’s something I clamour to create, for us going forward the demands on the players will be big. Fitness is huge, quality when you get in areas, crosses in the box.

“It’s like a big jigsaw football and if you put all the jigsaw pieces together correctly, you’ll have a good team.

“I was pleased for the players today to win. It was nice for them to get a win, especially when we know the season’s done. But I think everyone knows, the future’s the most important thing now.”

When chances went begging prior to the penalty did he think it was going to be one of those afternoons? “Not really because you can’t be hurt as a manager. You get to situations where there’s an acceptance, and I’ve accepted what’s going on at Ipswich Town now.

“The acceptance from me that it’s my job and Mark Ashton’s job and our American owners’ job going forward now to change the club for the better.

“And that’s not a criticism of anything that’s gone on before. When you’re around football, we know Ipswich Town’s place in the football pyramid is not 10th or 11th in League One and our job now, we have an obligation to make those supporters happy and proud of the team.

“Through this summer, there’ll be no days off and big holidays for people, we will just work and work and work in pursuit of that success.”

Swindin caretaker-boss Tommy Wright was pleased that his team never gave up.

“I’ll take out of that game that we kept going until the end,” he told the Swindon Advertiser. “The substitutes that came on made a bit of a difference too.

“I thought we started quite well and we had a couple of chances, they did as well.

“I always thought they were the better team, but I wanted a response from last weekend [when the Robins lost 5-0 at the MK Dons].

“I wanted a bit of fight and I thought we got that even though we gave two horrendous goals away again.

“That has been a problem all season and when you keep giving bad goals away like that it’s so deflating for everybody else.”

Reflecting on the two goals, Wright added: “I don’t know what [Scott] Twine is doing [for the second goal], he needs to play forward.

“And the first goal, it’s a poor tackle from [Jonathan] Grounds. I don’t know what he’s doing and it’s a definite penalty.

“I took Grounds off at half-time because I thought he was struggling against James Norwood. You didn’t have to be Pep Guardiola to see that.

“Norwood was bullying him, so I thought I’d put Tom Broadbent on who is a bit bigger and a bit stronger and I thought he did quite well.

“He dealt with Norwood quite well and we won more first headers than we did in the first half, which helped.”

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Drifter3012 added 18:35 - May 1
Cook has to get his "new" team to perform from the start in August. If we get to November and we are not in the top 6 then I doubt the new owners will stand for it and I get the feeling he knows that already.

Ipswichbusiness added 18:51 - May 1
Drifter3012; I agree. The easy part will be telling the underperforming players to go away, the more difficult ones will be recruiting suitable replacements and making them into a successful team.

Tufty added 18:51 - May 1
Those out of contract will have no need to worry Mick Macarthy is looking to bring new players in cheap.

Europablue added 18:51 - May 1
It's a big job to change the whole team, so I will be just looking for signs of improvement and results and consistency will come with time. I would accept going up via the playoffs. I want to see PC get at least the whole of next season unless something is really wrong.

Rimsy added 19:11 - May 1
If this league is as poor next year as this, I expect us to be promoted no problem. PC is going to be able to bring in a calibre of player to rise above the dross and more importantly know how to manage them. Even with a team of 50-60 per cent new players. Feeling really positive about the future.

WhoisJimmyJuan added 19:13 - May 1
I think today just takes a bit of pressure off. Just a little. It will cheer the players and manager up and I just hope we can nick another justvto go into the summer in a slightly less negative mindset. Because PC is under enormous pressure here. He has got nothing out of these players so is effectively banking on a summer to sort out a winning formula. That's a huge ask. A couple of wins this season might just help a little but he has now got to get it right this summer in the transfer market and then in pre-season.

delias_cheesy_flaps added 19:13 - May 1
Cook talks from a fans perspective which is refreshing, and i have no doubt he will deliver.
But...I don't buy into this BS about new players getting time to gel...we've made excuses for players long enough.
These are professional footballers not a bunch of non-league numpty's, I expect them to hit the ground running..especially in this cruddy league.
The time has come to not except drivel but to expect the very least.

BettyBlue added 19:34 - May 1
How do we manage to win when it doesn't matter at all and the play-oofs are mathematically impossible.

Why would you throw away a chance at the Play offs, waste another year in League One because you couldn't be bothered??

And now we can assume they the manager and the team have achieved a small step.

|No its even more mugging the fans off, and now we finish 14th where the players feel comfortable and they can start their summer holidays early.

Everyone at the club hang your heads in shame. That includes you Cook.

BettyBlue added 19:35 - May 1
Why did we throw away a chance at the Play offs, to waste another year in League One because you couldn't be bothered??

BettyBlue added 19:39 - May 1
And now we can assume that the manager and the team think have achieved a small positive step forward.

(Sorry everyone, I wish we could amend/ edit our comments especially when you're really angry.)

Marinermagic added 19:44 - May 1
Back in the kitchen Betty

grow_our_own added 19:54 - May 1
Much better team selection today. But on Radio Suffolk after the game, Cook said: "KVY, I've never seen anyone miss chances like him! He can miss chances from three yards out, can't he!?"
Even in jest, is that really necessary Paul? If I'd heard my manager criticising me like this in public, I'd be seething. Could easily have just said something about us collectively being wasteful in front of goal instead. You rarely hear managers singling players out like this, and for good reason. KVY isn't one of the expendables.

DifferentGravy added 20:30 - May 1
Already dealt with my disappointment of missing the playoffs. I was pleased to score goals, create chances........and win! Some decent moves on occasion and, irrespective of the frustration we all feel about Norwoods injury proneness, he gives us attacking threat. Just need someone else to take the pens lols

Have a good eve all and look forward to a brighter future for ITFC

pennblue added 20:33 - May 1
grow_your_own I think it is time to get off the back of the manager and the players now and stop analysing every comment or twitter post that comes from them. That is not helpful.

And on that note, well done to James Norwood today, led by example. I really could not give a damn what he posts on twitter, having a joker in the pack can be very good for team morale, and like Jimmy Bullard before him, he does do the business where it matters, on the pitch,

suffolkblueeye added 20:33 - May 1
Even the Swindon commentary team said that both reams are rubbish, nothing to take from this win, we tried so hard to lose the game...Dozy doz always getting caught in possession, can’t see what he brings...

PSGBlue added 20:46 - May 1
A win is a win, but it came against a relegated team who last week lost 5-0. So in the great scheme of things this means very little. The busiest people over the next week or two will be the cleaners, they have a lot of rubbish to throw out!

On a slightly more positive note, James Norwood does appear to have the ability to score. Despite his injuries, it maybe worth hanging onto him at least for a further season.

Marinersnose added 21:14 - May 1
Whilst I support Cook whilst he’s in charge of the team I believe that the signing of many new players will not bring about instant results. Players need time to bed in especially those players that Cook will be looking to recruit. I don’t see top drawer players being attracted to the club regardless of cash. We haven’t got the draw we had 15 years ago. Norwood proved again that he can score goals in this league but my worry is that he’s had two seasons where he’s failed to maintain or achieve the required fitness levels. This is a massive issue and the responsibility of the player not the club.

Gforce added 23:05 - May 1
From today's starting line up, I believe 7/8 of them will still be here next season.
Out of those probably only 3 will make the starting line up in August, with the rest on the bench most weeks.

BcarefulwhatUWish4 added 00:58 - May 2
Sad but these games are pointless now. Role on next season.

BcarefulwhatUWish4 added 01:00 - May 2

norfolkbluey added 07:20 - May 2
One swallow doesn't mean it's summer. If we hadn't beaten Swindon, well that would have said it all. Cook talks the the talk and I hope it's not just wind so we will wait with bated breath for the new team to emerge. Just hope he finds the people he needs to get us out of this deep hole of misery compounded when a canary looks down from on high. Fark*** hell.
I am wondering who are going to get their P45's. Interesting to see who captained the team at Swindon! Shrewd move by Cook.

BettyBlue added 08:10 - May 2
Dozzell out.

BettyBlue added 15:04 - May 2
Why did we throw away a chance at the Play offs, to waste another year in League One because nobody could be bothered at ITFC??

When Paul Cook arrived we had one of the easiest run ins we've ever had.:

Accrington Stanley FC - Ipswich Town

Gillingham FC - Ipswich Town
Ipswich Town - Lincoln City FC

Ipswich Town - Plymouth Argyle
Fleetwood Town FC - Ipswich Town
Fleetwood Town FC - Ipswich Town
Portsmouth FC - Ipswich Town

Wigan Athletic - Ipswich Town
Rochdale AFC - Ipswich Town
Ipswich Town - Milton Keynes Dons FC
Charlton Athletic - Ipswich Town
Northampton Town FC - Ipswich Town
Ipswich Town - AFC Wimbledon
Swindon Town FC - Ipswich Town
Shrewsbury Town FC - Ipswich Town

Shrewsbury Town FC - Ipswich Town
–Ipswich Town - Fleetwood Town FC

BettyBlue added 15:16 - May 2
18 pts out of 36 from Cook "fighting " for the play-offs.

Just one win and a draw and we would still be involved in the fight for a play-off place.

But No, we are ITFC and nobody blinks an eye or complains.....complete silence and acquiescence.

Paul Cook is still the Messiah who should be thoroughly ashamed of himself.
As for the players they should not be playing the last games.

And there should not be any "thank you"s for any of them. collect your stuff and please clear off and don't have anything to do with the club ever again.

BettyBlue added 15:17 - May 2
Just one win more and we would still be involved in the fight for a play-off place.

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