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Ipswich Town boss Paul Cook says his side are 'a million miles from a good side' after witnessing 3-0 defeat at AFC Wimbledon




Paul Cook gave a brutal assessment to the press of where his Ipswich Town side are at following their disappointing 3-0 defeat at AFC Wimbledon in Sky Bet League One tonight.

Seven frantic first-half minutes saw the hosts strike twice before Blues were reduced to 10 men at Plough Lane.

Headers from Will Nightingale (21') and Jack Rudoni (25') put the hosts in control, with Josh Harrop's red card (28') giving the visitors a mountain to climb in south London.

Ipswich Town manager Paul Cook had some harsh words for his side following their 3-0 defeat at AFC Wimbledon Picture: Barry Goodwin
Ipswich Town manager Paul Cook had some harsh words for his side following their 3-0 defeat at AFC Wimbledon Picture: Barry Goodwin

The result was put beyond any doubt when second-half substitute Ryan Longman (86') fired into the bottom corner four minutes from time.

Cook had said in his pre-match press conference that it would be a match that would define their season and nothing less than a win would do.

The result, a fourth defeat in the former Wigan boss' 10th game in charge, having only won two of those, saw the Blues slip from three to five points adrift of the play-offs and from eighth to ninth place in the table.

Asked how much the performance tonight hurt him in his post-match press conference with BBC Radio Suffolk's Brenner Wolley, he replied: "I can't even tell you lads, I just can't because I've been around football for years and I've always put myself in a supporter's position. And our supporters now are tired now and bored of us, aren't they? Let's have it right, that's what they are.

"I'm lucky enough and privileged enough now to probably have a chance, hopefully, to try and change a lot of what's gone on and that's what is going to have to happen now.

"There is no throwing players under the bus. There is no excuses offered.

"We're a million miles from a good team and that includes myself and the staff tonight. You win together, you lose together, we travel away together and we have each other.

"Like I say, I've been managing a long time now and the best feeling as a manager is when you put a team on the pitch that you trust. I don't trust our team and I'm going to be open and say that.

"That doesn't mean everyone is a bad player and everyone is doing something wrong, but we're miles off it, we're just miles off it for our club.

"Again, I keep going back to our supporters and they're tired and bored of it now.

"We have to be better because if we're not the changes will just be repetitive and I'm not sure the changes will get you to where you want to be because somewhere along the line the anchor has to go in and the badness has to stop.

"We have to start taking steps forward and we took a massive step back tonight as a club, and that is so disappointing for me and for you guys who travel and everyone else."

When it was put to him that he would also perhaps need to take a look at himself too, as he would have expected more than two wins out of 10, he said: "Ah, come on! As a manager of a football club coming in, two wins out of 10?! It is what it is. I'm big enough and I've been around the game well long enough to shoulder the criticism.

"When you're a manager and you stand on the touchline you are as good as your team. So tonight, if you are suggesting that with two out of 10, I'm not a very good manager and I haven't got a very good team."

Cook went on to say he did not want any more negative questions about how the game unfolded as his reply was simply going to be repeated that "we weren't very good, it's not good enough and it has to change".

When asked what he would say to fans that would lose heart after that he interrupted the question to say: "I've said enough. I'm surprised they've still got any (fans) we are what we are, we flatter to deceive."

It was put to Cook he would have to try to lift the player now and he replied: "They will have to lift themselves now, won't they?

"We're in that position in sport, in general, if you don't feel pain you will never do anything about it.

"We need to feel pain. You need to feel if you travel home tonight and if it doesn't affect you by tomorrow and the next day there's something wrong with you.

"I'm not so sure it affects our players a great deal, so the reality for us going forward is things must change."

Town, who have now not scored in their last three matches, having played out two successive goalless draws before tonight, travel to eighth-placed Charlton Athletic on Saturday (12.30pm).

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