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Cook: The Reality is We Need a Little Bit of Time to Gel
Tuesday, 17th Aug 2021 22:58

Town boss Paul Cook said his team will need a little bit of time to gel following their 2-1 defeat at Cheltenham.

Reflecting on the result the Blues manager said: “It’s just so disappointing, isn’t it? I think for our supporters, who travelled in great numbers again.

“I would suggest we started the game really well, we looked a really dangerous side and unfortunately we end up defending our 18-yard box for too many throw-ins.

“Two bounces of the ball go against us, one for Macauley [Bonne] to put us 2-0 up, the other a bit of a disappointing goal, if you like.

“Then all of a sudden we’re back on the end of another two goals against. I think, as you know, all good teams are built on solidity and unfortunately for us at the minute, we’re not as solid as we’d like to be, and that’s for sure.”

Is that going to take time? “I understand everyone’s questions, I’ve been around football all my life, I understand the fans’ expectancy, everyone’s expectancy.

“We’ve had Tom Carroll making his debut, we’ve had big [Cameron] Burgess making his debut, we’ve Hayden Coulson on the bench for the first time, we’ve got lads injured, we’re not making excuses.

“The reality is we need a little bit of time to gel, a little bit of time to get everyone together, but we also should be doing better than we are with the players that we have available. There’s a little bit of both tinged in there.”

Does he see signs that the first win of the season is coming? “I think we’ve played three games, haven’t we? When Macauley chips it over the lad’s head and he’s in on goal with no goalie at 1-0 up, I think even you might think it’s coming!

“As a manager, I try to be as calm as I can because it’s easy after the game, especially the way football is, we’re Ipswich Town, everyone will go the extra yard to beat us, I get that.

“For our lads now, the last thing we need is me shouting and screaming at them because I feel pressure. I don’t feel pressure. I feel pressure to get the team to perform to the ability that I can, I feel pressure then to get the players on the pitch that we’ve signed, the Chaplins, the Edmundsons and the like, Coulsons.

“We’ve got a lot of good players who haven’t even played yet. The reality is we’re searching for that first win, I get that. Hopefully it can come on Saturday.”

Asked what he says to fans who might be getting a little bit edgy, he said: “I get it, I 100 per cent get it for Ipswich Town fans.

“I think when, as a manager, and again everyone will always have their opinions, and I respect everyone’s opinions, when you have the changes at the club that we’ve had, if people think we’re just going to get up and running and everyone will click, Cameron Burgess has only just met Woolfy. We’re asking them to then go and play together.

“Vaz [Vaclav Hladky] has never met Burgess and we’re asking them to then go and play against a team that put you under pressure, so a little bit of sanity must prevail, whilst we’re very, very disappointed, of course we are.”

Cook had praise for Kyle Edwards, who was hugely impressive in the first half and felt the former West Brom man wasn’t given the ball enough after the break.

“Outstanding. He’s going to be a fantastic player for the club, I think you can see why we courted him for so long,” he said.

“Great credit to our owners again for pursuing such a quality player. And again, it’s integrating him quickly.

“We’ve got to get him the ball, I think it’s quite clear for everyone in the stadium to see the quality the lad possesses, and for some reason we stopped getting him the ball.

“As I say, I don’t understand that, but it’s something that we’ll go back and we’ll analyse and look at.”

Cook was also pleased with Burgess’s debut, the centre-half having signed from Accrington Stanley on Sunday.

“I thought he was outstanding,” he said. “Again, you’re talking about lads who travelled on the bus yesterday, they haven’t even been in the building.

“We’ve got to just be careful that we’ve put such a good squad together, which is given, the reality, we expect to win every game.

“We’ve also got to factor in how hard the opposition want to beat us. Tonight probably 1100, 1200 Ipswich Town fans travelled, all after work, fantastic support and it makes a cup-tie atmosphere. We’ve got to build our lads to be resilient to see these games out.”

Quizzed on whether the signing of Tom Carroll, the Blues’ 16th of the summer, will be the end of his recruitment drive, he responded: “Again, you never know, you never know in football. We’ll just see what it brings.

“You’ve got to have a little bit of manners when you get beat, and I always try to. I’m deeply hurt as you can imagine, especially after being 1-0 up and it’s looking good. Unfortunately, it hasn’t gone our way, and as I say we just keep working hard.”

Is he happy to go into the season with the squad as it is? “You know yourself, it’s football, it’s a long season, you need all your players fit and available.

“The reality for us is that we’ve had a massive overhaul in players, we’ve got a few injuries. They’re not excuses, they’re just statements of fact, they’re not excuses to why we haven’t won tonight or we haven’t won at Burton.

“The big moments are not going our way at the minute and we must make them go our way.”

Currently sidelined are Toto Nsiala, James Norwood, Conor Chaplin (all hamstring), Sone Aluko and Will Burns. Asked whether any of those are serious long-term issues, Cook said: “No, no, no. The injuries aren’t an excuse for the performance tonight.

“I thought our performance at times was OK. And you guys watch it. Sometimes we have a lot of possession without any penetration and unfortunately when teams sit low against you and counter-attack, it’s a lot more difficult than people think.

“We gave a goal away against Morecambe, against Burton, where people have not really been in the ascendancy in the game but they’ve scored.

“Tonight after 60 minutes, we looked very comfortable in the game and we end up losing 2-1. That’s the learning curve.”

Cheltenham manager Michael Duff was pleased with his side's performance and victory over one of the division's bigger clubs.

“It's just a win, but a good win against a big team obviously,” he told Gloucestershire Live. “The second part of the first half and in the second half we were excellent.

“We were more aggressive and got on the front foot. We asked the back three to be a little bit braver and the wing-backs to go really narrow because they caused us problems in the first 20 minutes with their shape, a sort of box in the middle of the pitch and we couldn't quite seem to land on it.

“Ultimately, the performances, the desire, the togetherness, we had to ride our luck - their chance at 1-0 is probably a big one in the game now, looking at that.

“We looked a threat and it was a really good performance. Hopefully the supporters will see that and they came along with it as well. Hopefully we'll have a few more of those days.”

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Reuserscurtains added 23:02 - Aug 17
It will take time to gel. We aren’t looking miles off, it’s been fine margins. Some of the stuff in the first half was again promising. The complete meltdown by town fans after game 3 has been disappointing and a bit embarrassing.

Bezzer added 23:03 - Aug 17
It’s about time you started playing different formations and new tactics! Stubborn just like the previous 4 managers!! Eddie Howe for me, or at least sound him out and see what comes of it!

BluedanW added 23:03 - Aug 17
2nd half was awful. As per usual no plan B when the opposition starts to get on top. The excuses may work for now, but not for much longer

bluesince84 added 23:04 - Aug 17
“I’m not making excuses “ …. Then gives 20 excuses ……

Hipsterectomy added 23:04 - Aug 17
Delete Club

oldshuck added 23:04 - Aug 17
"I've been around football all my life" - the new "I've played at big clubs"...

oldshuck added 23:04 - Aug 17
"I've been around football all my life" - the new "I've played at big clubs"...

oldshuck added 23:04 - Aug 17
"I've been around football all my life" - the new "I've played at big clubs"...

bedsitfc added 23:05 - Aug 17
You made mass changes!
You should have factored this in!

You are a waste of time

mickeyjb added 23:07 - Aug 17
How many times will we hear the gel comment I wonder? how long can he use that as an excuse? At least he doesn’t have to change much on his post match interviews. Oh and is it Pompey at the top of the league?? 4 in 20 and a very uninspiring pre season. Great start PC, actually worse than what we had and that’s saying something. Please prove us wrong, we are waiting patiently.

istanblue added 23:08 - Aug 17
Jeez has PC been on this forum looking for ready-made excuses?

Monkey_Blue added 23:09 - Aug 17
What a word sale of nonsense and contradictions.

ArnieM added 23:10 - Aug 17
We didn’t kill the game off vs “ push over” Burton, ( who I note have done well again tonight !) and we haven’t killed the game off vs “ push over “ Cheltenham …. Start doing that to teams and we will win.

Needs time to gel - of course they bloody do, and if fans can’t see that then they don’t understand the game!

Monkey_Blue added 23:12 - Aug 17
He talks a lot and says nothing of substance. We have a less than insightful or cerebral manager

Umros added 23:12 - Aug 17
Na, don’t buy it I’m afraid, 4 wins in 20 with whatever team at this level is appalling and the manor of opposition gets poorer and poorer as part. We seem to attract managers that ‘have done well’ but seemingly can’t do a thing with us. 8 points is ridiculous gap already !

PSGBlue added 23:13 - Aug 17
During the dark days last season under Evans and Lambert, one small consultation was the hope that either one or both of them could be replaced. Prays were answered and indeed there was hope for the future. But two defeats and one draw, I ask myself where can I find my hope for the future? At the minute there is no hope!

For that matter where are the owners? All gone very quiet since the pre season hype. Evans still owns 5%, maybe they could wheel him out to deliver a scripted moral boosting response!

Monkey_Blue added 23:15 - Aug 17
Can we ban the word Gel?

londontractorboy57 added 23:16 - Aug 17
ok Paul might as well give you time !!!!! weve only been waiting 20 years.

BluePayne added 23:17 - Aug 17
Promising first half, creating good chances and defending well but should’ve killed the game off when we had the chance. Two bits of shocking defending from long throw ins (what we expected from them) and we lose 2-1. No excuses really, from the first half a win is coming in the near future.


billlm added 23:19 - Aug 17
Your biggest signing should have been Liam Richardson,

Monkey_Blue added 23:22 - Aug 17
If we win on Saturday have we “gel’d”? And so after that it’s not because we need to “gel”. It’s like the 80’s. Never heard the word gel so much or so much ar43 covering BS from a town manager. It’s NEVER his fault.

Reuserscurtains added 23:31 - Aug 17
Monkey, have a day off.

Suffolkboy added 23:38 - Aug 17
Sounds like a man in a bar with only one script , and who keeps on repeating time after time ,hoping someone new will listen ,or come along to believe !
PC ,did any one ever tell you that in sport as in life you make your own luck ,and the harder you keep working and believing the more likely you are to succeed ?
Tired and lame excuses are a dismal reflection of your present inability to produce results ; it casts real doubts upon your qualities and capacity to manage ,either the team or the men under your command !
Time to change that perception ; action will speak prouder than words AND boy do we need it !!

Monkey_Blue added 23:38 - Aug 17
Reuserscurtains. No!! Who the hell are you to tell me I can’t express my opinion? Either argue my points or STFU. I’ve supported this club all my life and won’t be told my opinion isn’t welcome on a public forum by you just because it’s not what you want to hear. Grow up

WalkRules added 23:40 - Aug 17
Lots of exciting skilful players on show but sadly unable to get the ball forward. Hugely frustrating to watxh from the stand. If they tried and failed then fair enough - but to not even try is concerning. Oh well- we keep waiting.

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