Coulson and One Other From Last Week's Team Set to Miss Out Against Owls
Friday, 24th Sep 2021 09:44
Hayden Coulson will miss Saturday’s home game against Sheffield Wednesday with the injury he suffered in last week’s 1-0 win at Lincoln and manager Paul Cook says another player that started last week also probably won’t be involved against the Owls due to a knock.
Asked about the injury situation with winger Kyle Edwards and keeper Christian Walton (adductor) among those to have missed out at Sincil Bank, Cook was as usual keeping his cards close to his chest: “I don’t want to not be giving you information and I’d give you the information if I felt you wouldn’t share it. But the reality is you can share it!
“On the injury front, we’ve got a couple of disappointments, we’ve got a couple of positives, so it is what it is. We just keep ploughing forward.
“I think as you saw last week, Vaz [keeper Vaclav Hladky] came back into the team, Tom Carroll came into the team, Santi [Bersant Celina] came into the team and it was probably our most complete performance.
“It had a mixture of everything in there, good play, good quality, good discipline, good desire to keep a clean sheet. A better team shape out of possession, a lot of better qualities than we’d shown in the previous games.
“Like everything else, we’re just working as hard as we can to get repetitive performances, repetitive results that will see us to where we want to be.”
Asked about the team spirit in the camp with Joe Pigott and James Norwood having been the noisiest during the celebrations on the coach back from Lincoln last week despite neither of them having been involved, Cook confirmed Coulson, who suffered what looked to be a groin problem in the second half against the Imps, would miss out.
“It’s something that takes time,” Cook said regarding the team spirit. “The most important people for me at football clubs are the ones who aren’t playing.
“They’re the most important, they’re the ones we’ve got to look after. If you look at Hayden Coulson now, who is out of the team tomorrow, the reality is that Matt Penney comes in.
“For any of our supporters at the stadium on Saturday, Matt Penney was running before the game, keeping up his fitness levels in the hope that his opportunity comes.
“And it’s come very, very quickly. This is football and you’ve got to prepare for when your opportunity comes.
“There’ll never be 11 players that can get a club promoted anymore, those days are gone. The fixture schedule’s far too demanding, the number of competitions we’re in is too demanding and you’ve got to have a strong group of players.
“When you get that disappointment, it’s a self-disappointment, it’s something that you’ve got to manage for the greater good, and it’s something that I feel has been one of the best things around us at the minute.
“The results have been a concern, of course they have, the points tally is not where we want to be, but watching these lads grow together’s been something that I’ve really, really enjoyed. That’s going to be important.
“You’ve only got to look at Rekeem Harper’s performance last week coming off the bench to see that. There was no sulking, there was no disappointment, he was prepared to take a little bit of pain for his team to win and that’s something that will spread through the group.”
Are there players that are cementing their places in the team? “I’d love to say they are but obviously with the injuries it’s been a bit of a difficult one. We have lost probably someone or maybe two from last week’s team that won’t play tomorrow, which is really a tough pill tomorrow because I think when the supporters turn up at the stadium and see the team selection is different, it’s certainly not be tinkering with the team.
“I’d have loved nothing more than to put last week’s team back on the pitch tomorrow. Unfortunately we’re not going to be able to do that but we just keep going forward.”
Despite the fitness issues, does he had a better understanding of what his best XI is? “I think you learn more and more about your players as you go along from week to week.
“Managers have always had different philosophies on picking teams and some managers say you never change a winning team. Some managers will always say you pick your best team.
“So there are all debates around football. I would have picked the same team 100 per cent tomorrow as started last week, and unfortunately, because of an injury, I can’t do that.
“So that’s just something that’s happening to us at the minute, but Tuesday night, we’ll have Samy Morsy into the fold for the first time [with Saturday's game the final match of his suspension]. The likes of Toto Nsiala is back in the squad tomorrow [having recovered from his hamstring problem], so for every bit of pain, there’s a bit of joy.
“At the minute, we’d just love to go through a week or two of news to report. Unfortunately, we’re not able to do that at the minute.”
Quizzed on what the injury situation is down to, he added: “I think in football terms, when we’re hopefully near the end of the Covid situation, and I think there’s just been a lot of change at our club, a lot of lads coming in late, a lot of clubs have missed pre-season, there are numerous reasons why.
“For us, the most important thing is that we train hard from Monday to Friday and then we try our best to perform well on a Saturday. The bumps and bruises come with it.
“One thing’s for sure, no one in this league will be feeling sorry for us, I can tell you that.”
Photo: Matchday Images/Steve Waller
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