'I don't think it will be nil-nil' - Cook on facing MK Dons and ex-loanee Parrott

Charlton Athletic's George Dobson (right) and Mikton Keynes Dons' Troy Parrott battle for the ball d

Ex Ipswich Town loanee Troy Parrott returns to Portman Road with MK Dons having scored two in two. - Credit: PA

Ipswich Town manager Paul Cook believes tomorrow's home clash with MK Dons will be a 'very, very entertaining game'.

The new-look Blues are searching for their first win of the season after dominating larges spells of their games against Morecambe (2-2 home draw), Newport (1-0 home loss in Carabao Cup), Burton and Cheltenham (both 2-1 away defeats).

Meanwhile, there have been 17 goals scored in MK Dons' opening four matches - a 5-0 Carabao Cup loss at Bournemouth, 3-3 draw at Bolton, 2-1 home defeat to Sunderland and 2-1 home win against Charlton.

Asked for his views on the Dons, who are now under the leadership of former Town men Liam Manning, Chris Hogg and David Wright, Cook said: “Excellent. They've got a really good philosophy, a really good style, they stick to their principles. They’ll probably have spells in the game where they’ll open us up because they’re very good at it. 

“I don’t think it will be a nil-nil draw if I'm brutally honest because you’re going to get two teams intent on winning a football game.  

“And when you get two teams that want to go toe-to-toe like that, the reality is someone will buckle. I'm quite confident tomorrow it won’t be us, although I've got the utmost respect for MK Dons because they are a very good side."

The trio of former Ipswich Town players now coaching at MK Dons (L-R): David Wright, Liam Manning and Chris Hogg

The trio of former Ipswich Town players now coaching at MK Dons (L-R): David Wright, Liam Manning and Chris Hogg - Credit: MK Dons

He continued: “I’m sure we’ll see a very, very entertaining game at Portman Road. I expect it to be a really good spectacle for League One - two teams intent on scoring goals and playing progressive football. 

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“For us, the opposition plays a big part in what we do. We’ve got to learn to adapt to every scenario. The last two games away from home have been really tough ones to take, because at 60 minutes we looked like winning both. Unfortunately for us, we haven’t even come away with a point. That can be heartbreaking. 

“Confidence is key in football and when you keep getting your confidence knocked it’s hard. These lads will have no negativity around them though – none. My job is to make them feel invincible."

Asked if he had any advice for former Town youth teamer turned coach Manning, who is embarking on his first managerial job in England, Cook replied: “When I first started I was told not to try and pass your way out of the league. I didn't really stick to that, I enjoyed passing it, and we won the league! So I think Liam’s doing a good job! I might be asking Liam for a bit of help tomorrow at five o'clock when he comes in for a drink! 

“Young managers and coaches now are much more educated, they really are. There's so much knowledge about tactics and awareness of the opposition. 

“Whilst I wish Liam well, hopefully I’ll be enjoying a drink with him tomorrow after an Ipswich win."

One familiar face in the MK Dons team is Troy Parrott. The young Irish striker, who spent the back end of last season on loan at Town, is now at Stadium MK for a season from parent club Tottenham. And he returns to Portman Road having just scored against Sunderland and Charlton.

“There are no special plans for Troy," said Cook. "He's a fantastic lad, a really good player. His loan at Ipswich will stand him in really good stead to go and have a really good football career. He’s got a really good appetite for football, wants to get better and wants to learn. He’s a really good acquisition for MK Dons."

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