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Morsy: Boss is as Focused as I've Ever Seen Him
Wednesday, 15th Sep 2021 10:59

Debutant skipper Samy Morsy says manager Paul Cook is as focused as he’s ever seen him and has no doubt that Town will get over their early season struggles and will replicate the success the pair enjoyed at Wigan and Chesterfield.

The 29-year-old, who joined the Blues from Championship Middlesbrough on deadline day, admitted last night’s 2-1 Papa John’s Trophy defeat to West Ham’s U21s was a tough one to take.

“Obviously we wanted to win, disappointing really, that’s football,” the Egyptian international said.

Asked about the mood in the dressing room, he continued: “Disappointment. We want to start winning. There’s loads of potential in the squad but we need to start putting wins together now.

“But we shouldn’t get carried away, there have only been six league games. The league’s never won in September, so we’ll just get our heads down, work really hard on the training ground, which the lads have been doing, and we’ll keep going.”

Morsy is currently serving a suspension which is a hangover from his time with Boro having been harshly red-carded in his final match for the Teessiders, so from a personal perspective it was good to get a game under his belt.

“Definitely, nice to get 90 minutes in the legs,” he said. “In the long term it’s about getting on track in the league, but personally it’s nice to get 90 minutes in the legs.”

Regarding the sending off, in a 1-1 draw with Blackburn, he added: “It just sums up the officials really, it was a shocking decision. I think everyone saw it. But you get on with it.”

The Wolverhampton-born midfielder believes situations such as the current one at Town are a test of character and personality.

“Definitely,” he said. “When things are going great, it’s easy to play, you don’t think about anything, it’s great.

“This is where we see the character of the squad, see the character of the players, we see which players stand up to be counted and who go into their shells.

“This will stand us in good stead for the times in the season when we need to stand up and be counted, which is obviously the case now.

“It’s a good test, without adversity you don’t do anything and this is certainly adversity right now.”

Manager Paul Cook spoke glowingly about Morsy’s character following the 5-2 defeat to Bolton and his former Spireites and Latics skipper is experienced enough to have seen similar situations previously and to have come out the other end.

“I’ve been there before, I’ve been on bad runs before and turned that around to excellent ones, it can happen. It’s just habit,” he said.

“You obviously have to be honest with yourself, take a look in the mirror, you assess your performance, you keep going, you keep working, there’s no magic pill. No one’s going to swallow a magic pill and everything’s going to be alright.

“We work harder than we did yesterday, we keep working and once you get to that level you start winning games.”

Morsy dismissed the suggestion that Cook’s comments put pressure on him. “Not at all, it’s why I’m in the game, why I love football, sort of relishing these these moments.

“There’s no doubt in my mind we are going to go on a great run and this is going to be a leading factor in it because we’ve had this pain, and I know Ipswich for a number of years haven’t been winning games or been top of the leagues for a number of years and we have to change that around.

“The lads were telling me it was top class support even at the weekend and soon enough I’m really hopeful that we’re going to give the fans a team they can be really proud of.”

How worrying is the current league position of 22nd? “Not worrying, we’re six games in. If you win the next six you’re going to be in the top six. But obviously we want to win games, we haven’t won any games so far this season and we just need to pick up.”

Given the lack of a win all season, some fans are inevitably calling for a change of manager but Morsy believes Cook will get it right at Town just as he has with his previous sides having skippered the Chesterfield side which carried off the League Two title in 2013/14 and the Wigan squad which claimed League One silverware in 2017/18.

“He’s been promoted at every club he’s been at with the style of football,” he said. “He’s done really well, he assembled a really good Wigan squad, who in the second half of the season were the most in-form team in the division.

“He knows what he’s doing, for sure, but there’s not going to be a quick fix. Any manager of any club in a summer where you have to sign 19 or 20 players and rebuild a completely different squad it is tough, but obviously we do need results now and the lads need to repay him.”

Has Cook changed much since they worked together at Wigan? “Same guy, even better than he was, to be honest. He’s more meticulous, he’s as focused as I’ve ever seen him.

“At Wigan we were on this incredible run, he put together such a good team and that’s exactly what he’ll be looking to do this season.”

Morsy dropped from the Championship with Boro to what he hopes will be one season in League One with the Blues.

“That’s the plan,” he said. “I think that’s why a lot of people see the big potential of the club, new owners with the manager and that’s the goal and we’ll get there because we keep working hard.

“Training really has been brilliant, I know it’s easy to say and I know people will be thinking ‘He’s probably just saying that’ but training has been brilliant and I think when we get players back fit and firing we’re going to be a real force in this league.”

How big a call was it to move down a division? “I was pretty much told on the last day of the window really. I had to sum it up and obviously I’d worked with the manager before, Ipswich is a massive club in itself and the goal’s to get promoted, no doubt about that, the goal is to get promoted this season.”

Morsy has competition in midfield with Lee Evans and Rekeem Harper having been the starting pair up to now and Tom Carroll having played alongside him last night.

“They’re good players, you need good players in the squad, there’s competition all over,” he added. “You need that, you need players to push each other and make sure you’re at the top of your game.”

Morsy played alongside Evans at Wigan and believes there’s plenty to come from the Welshman, who has had an at times difficult start to the campaign.

“He’s a really good player,” he said. “We formed a successful partnership, we’ve won some big games together, we’ve done well together.

“I think when you’re not winning games it’s hard, it’s hard for every new player at the club but Lee will turn out to be a good signing I’m sure.”

He believes the key is to find a blend in midfield: “Definitely, and we will get there. There’s no doubt about it and you get there by just keep working, by keeping positive.

“It’s that self-analysis as well, you look at where you’re going right and where you’re going wrong, it’s the honest conversation really. Losses definitely bring that. But we just keep going.”

Asked about the strengths in his own game, he said: “People who have seen me play know my strengths and we’ll just see. I’ve definitely come to win games and get this club promoted, that’s what I’ll say.”

Morsy captained the Blues last night and says it was an honour: “Brilliant. I wear it with pride really. I’ve won the league twice, the last time I was in this league four or five years ago I captained the lads to a league title.

“It’s a massive honour and it’s something I don’t take lightly and I’ll make sure the fans have a team they’re proud of.”

He says manager Cook is yet to have a chat about who will wear the armband permanently with Lee Evans having been in possession in the league up to now. “No, I think he’ll just make that decision when he sees fit.”

But he says he’ll provide leader whether he’s the captain or otherwise: “It will be the manager’s decision. Every club I’ve been at I’ve been a leader in my own right and that won’t change here.”

Morsy will miss the trip to Lincoln and then the home game against Sheffield Wednesday due to that lingering suspension and admits he can’t wait for the chance to make his league debut when Doncaster visit on Tuesday 28th September.

“Definitely, but I’ll just keep working away and come Doncaster I’ll be ready,” he said.

Does he find it tough watching games? “I’ve come to terms with it. I’ve just got to keep training hard and just be ready for when I play.”

Morsy believes there’s more than enough in the squad to win at Lincoln on Saturday: “Absolutely, the league’s so unpredictable, anyone can beat everyone but it’s going to be about appetite, application, a little bit of luck as well, which you need in football and it would be great to get our first win.”

He added: “Momentum’s powerful, good or bad. When it’s going well, everything drops for you, when it’s not, we had a clear penalty tonight, for example [when Zanda Siziba was fouled in the second half]. I’m not going to use that as an excuse but if we score that penalty we probably win the game.

“That’s just where the club’s at at the minute. It’s still very early days so there’ll be no massive reaction, we’ll just keep going, we’ll keep working, we’ll work harder than we’ve ever worked and then when it clicks we’re going to be in a really good place.”

Photos: TWTD/Matchday Images

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Marcus added 11:02 - Sep 15
Too many squad changes and a very unchallenging preseason, followed by constant changes in the team. We might have some decent players, but we don't have a team at the moment.

iaintaylorx added 11:11 - Sep 15
Cook is a big reason why alot of these players have dropped down a league to play for us. We’re very fortunate to have attracted some of these guys, albeit is just isn’t clicking at the minute. Personally for me, sacking Cook isn’t the answer however it is a results business and it isn’t look great at the minute. We have had some wholesale changes with the squad and this will naturally take a few games to start to gel, but we need to see those signs ASAP! Lincoln is massive and suddenly one win could lead into a good run. It’s early days but I am not overly concerned…yet!


Europablue added 11:15 - Sep 15
Hopefully he can bring the leadership and organisation that we need

legoman added 11:25 - Sep 15
Great interview.

tractorboy90uk added 11:25 - Sep 15
He is right, the league is never won in September, however it can most definitely be lost and it’s now all but impossible to gain automatic promotion now. Unfortunately a play off spot is now the best we can achieve

TractorRoyNo1 added 11:29 - Sep 15
I get it, only 6 games in fir this team BUT it is umpteen games in for Cook and his untried coaches and a zillion games in for us depressed fans.

Monkey_Blue added 11:42 - Sep 15
He wasn’t promoted at two of his first three clubs and was sacked by two of them. Just fact checking. He legged it from the other three. He actually ran from adversity when financial “adversity” arrived. 😉👍

Drifter3012 added 11:44 - Sep 15
I don't doubt we have some good players. The biggest issue at the moment has been our tactics. They might be working in training. I don't doubt that Saturday's team beat last night's team 3-0 in a training match last Thursday but against an opponent who knows what is coming and changes their tactics accordingly we look hopeless and lost.
For Cook to stay he has to have more than one style of play and has to be willing to give plan B, C or D a go if need be.
Away to Lincoln on Saturday we need a more solid defence and for our 2 holding midfield players to play a part in that and our full backs not to leave room in behind.
I will be happy if we play cautious and get to 60 minutes at 0-0. This will give those on the pitch some confidence. Then bring on Celina, if he is fit & a 2nd striker and try and get a simple 1-0 victory in the last 30 minutes.

Billysherlockblue added 12:01 - Sep 15
Cook will get to xmas for me. Yes im peed off but that shows how much we love our club. Does cook want to do well of course he does more than anything. He deserves time but he has to adapt as other teams know exactly what were going to do. Change it for sat and Lincoln wont know what hit them. Use same system and they know allready. Super blues forever 💙

tractorboy90uk added 12:27 - Sep 15
For those that voted me down, let me explain the mathematics of our position. To gain automatic promotion you need a minimum of 92pts, i.e. 2pts per game. So, at this point we should have 12pts from 6 games. To get back on track we now need to win the equivalent of the next 9 games which will give us 27pts plus the 3pts we now have making 30pts from 15 games. And then we have to average 2pts per game for the rest of the season. Anyone think that’s achievable at this time ? I really want the team promoted and out of this league, I’m just being realistic looking at the facts as they are at the moment. I just can’t see how automatic promotion is still a realistic option.

ipswichone added 12:40 - Sep 15
I'm sick to death of all this media rubbish being churned out by this time cooks buddie will drag out cooks job,and send us down.cook doesn't know what he is doing.longer we keep making excuses for him,the deeper into relegation we you really want to go to league 2?well in cook we will

Europablue added 12:44 - Sep 15
Monkey_Blue I can't blame Cook for leaving Wigan under the circumstances. It was a great opportunity for Leam Richardson as a rookie, but establish managers want a solid base to work from and he was in demand.

jong75 added 12:47 - Sep 15
I said Cook needs to be given until the end of September. If things havent started to improve by then, i think he could be in trouble. What position were man city in last october, weren't they 12th? They then went on an amazing run and won the league at a canter. I still believe in Cook, I think he is the man for the job still, I hope I am right.

paulcooperisgod added 12:49 - Sep 15
Anyone calling for the sacking of Cook isn't a real fan. Its been 6 games 6 GAMES! get a grip when has anyone been promoted or relagated after 6 games? It will come mark my words we going to give someone a good hammering and then never look back.

midastouch added 12:51 - Sep 15
I know Cook has had success elsewhere but he seems very rigid in his approach and it concerns me that he persists with the same formation even though it's not got us a win yet this season! Being stubborn is a common trait with football managers and one that all too often ends up with them losing their job!

As the saying goes, if it aint broke why fix it? But when it is broke then fix it fast or be prepared to say hello to your P45! I wouldn't mind giving him time if he had credit in the bank but he's been here a good while now. You have to earn credit for fans to show patience. But he's done little to earn any credit since being here in all truth. The honeymoon is over and if doesn't sort it quickly the new owners could be filing for divorce!

midastouch added 12:54 - Sep 15
And his record is hopeless on the road with us (see here:, we need to sort that fast starting against Lincoln if not the knives really will be out!

Monkey_Blue added 12:57 - Sep 15
EuropaBlue. Why don’t you blame him? If a club goes into admin they’ve spent beyond their means which means player costs. Logically that means he had a better squad than the club could afford so who’s to say they wouldn’t have gone down if they’d lived within their means?. He didn’t leave to give Richardson a chance otherwise he wouldn’t have tried to get him to take a step backwards in his own management career. Richardson clearly knew it was a tough task but decided he was up for he challenge where as Cook wasn’t. Richardson is reaping the rewards and Cook is finding out he’s perhaps not as good as he thought he was. Wigan was supposedly “his club” so can you imagine Burley leaving if Ipswich were relegated and in financial trouble? He left Chesterfield after what was his best achievement, play-offs in league one and dropped a division to avoid the financial issues to take over Pompey who had by far the biggest budget in league two.

Monkey_Blue added 13:05 - Sep 15
Paulcooperisgod. It’s not 6 games. It’s 8 games this season and 16 last season. I don’t care if they weren’t his players last season, most managers get a job inheriting someone else’s signings/squad. Their job is to get the maximum out of the players they have. He now has his own squad and can you honestly think 3 draws and 5 defeats is even par for this squad irrelevant of them being new? Take the cook tinted glasses off.

JewellintheTown added 13:08 - Sep 15
Are some on here still harping on about last night & Cook needing to go? He isn't, he's here for the long haul & the owners etc all understand (because they're not know-it-all fans, they're experts) how difficult it is to flick a switch & get a team slamming goals in for fun & building a defensive wall to stop every goal.
Morsy is completely right. Cook knows what he's doing. Let him do it.
Stop over dramatising the situation, go take a deep breath & give it a month or two & see where we are then.

midastouch added 13:14 - Sep 15
He's been focused on failure so far!
The Bolton game has come very close to pushing me over my edge with Cook. My 11 year old son, who has never had a single thing to shout about since supporting town, said last night after the game that supporting Ipswich is just no fun as they never give him anything to be happy about. None of his mates support Ipswich, in fact they tease him for supporting them. It would hurt me if he turned his back on the club but I honestly wouldn't blame him if he did as it's just feels like one low followed by another low!

We've had a string of bad managers (and obviously most had to work with one-hand tied behind their back with Evans) and this constant going backwards is sucking the life and will out of our club. Why would a youngster even want to support Ipswich now as the players and manager literally give them nothing to be proud about or shout about whatsoever, it's depressing!!!
We're going to lose a generation of supporters (if we haven't already!) unless the new owners can start to breathe some life back into the club as it feels like the club has been on life-support for longer than I care to remember now!

PJewellisaGod added 13:32 - Sep 15
If it helps I have also been through it. Few years ago both my nephews supported ITFC (they are in 20's now). My sis remarried- long story short they've been Norwich fans last few years. Was absolutely gutted. However, I remember 1978 and the glory years after. I remember the Burley years with Matt Holland in midfield. They only had the 1-0 Priskin win to remember (and we got beat in the second leg) and that home draw with Norwich a few years back. Young supporters need to see success and we haven't had much the last few years at Ipswich. Was hoping this would be a time of change but seems we are heading downwards rather than upwards. Young fans have left in droves.

peewee added 13:46 - Sep 15
With all this time to gel bs would be ok if progression had been made but we seem to be getting worse, players seem to be equally as unfit as last season. Poor tactics and mistakes at the back are still here, after the way he spoke about last seasons squad and way he acted towards them. Sick of the false dawns football is a result driven sport and we have no wins

Marinersnose added 13:48 - Sep 15
Unfortunately there is too much hype surrounding many of Cooks acquisitions. He has signed some very good players but some are no better than what we had. Many so called Championship players were fringe players so of course they don’t mind dropping down and earning a fortune. Most of the shining lights are in fact loan players Coulson Bonne and Celina who will move on next season. Cook couldn’t get the team playing last season and now he’s got his new squad of mostly ex players in who he knows and trusts but he still can’t get results. He changes the team but not the results. We had two excellent centre backs in Woolfenden and Wilson and they have been replaced with two big centre backs who look poor on the ball slow and unfit. The keeper he signed has been bombed out and the replacement lets in 5 . He plays 3rd choice keeper against a kids team and he gifts them the game. A striker who doesn’t want to be her and who has been woeful is now back in the squad. I’ve no idea what the manager is doing . The shape is poor, the midfield offers no protection to the defence but the defenders are always at fault. I think this guy has had too long already and the clowns helping him out are just enjoying the gravy train. Yes the football is more attractive as we have some exciting attacking players but the team doesn’t look capable of winning matches.Cook doesn’t know his best eleven, neither doesn’t he know his best formation. I’m seriously concerned.

runningout added 13:51 - Sep 15
We have been a damaged club for years. Our wounds are healing too slowly. PC has my backing right now

ringwoodblue added 14:10 - Sep 15
Sacking Cook would be foolish as a lot of the players we have signed have come in because of him. But why can’t we recruit him a decent assistant and some more experienced coaches? It’s clear he needs some help.

What if we do sack Cook and the new manager doesn’t do any better - what then?

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