'Good players worth waiting for' - Cook provides transfer update

Mark Ashford talks to Paul Cook after the pre-season friendly at Dartford

Ipswich Town boss Paul Cook speaks to chief executive Mark Ashton following the 1-0 win at Dartford. Photo: Pagepix - Credit: Pagepix

Ipswich Town manager Paul Cook said that the club is trying to sign 'good players that are worth waiting for' following this afternoon's pre-season win at Dartford.

It's been a summer of big change at Portman Road, with 20 first team players departing, four told to train with the Under-23s, six new signings arriving and chief executive Mark Ashton revealing that he wants to bring in 'at least five more'.

The Blues are understood to currently be trying to sign Rotherham's Matt Crooks and Dijon's Bersant Celina at present.

Asked about the drastic squad overhaul that followed last season's ninth-place finish, Cook - whose side won 1-0 in front of 1,620 fans at Princes Park this afternoon - said: “I won’t be speaking about last year or stuff like that, I just don’t feel there’s any need to go over old ground. The most important thing now is tomorrow and the future of the club. 

“We are going to sign more players in this window. We are going to go the starting blocks as one of the favourites in this league to go up. And we want to stand up and be counted." 

He continued: “As you can imagine, we’re after good players. That’s the brutal truth of it. At the minute we are down the line with some and we’re debating others.  

Mixed message: Manager Paul Cook wearing the captainÕs armband before the pre-season friendly at Dar

Ipswich Town manager Paul Cook pictured before the 1-0 friendly win at Dartford. Photo: Pagepix - Credit: Pagepix

“Mark (Ashton) is working tirelessly behind the scenes to make it happen. We all want it done today and yesterday, none more so than myself, but if you get the right players it will be well, well worth waiting for. That’s what we’re prepared to do as a club. 

“There are a few other clubs in the same position as us: Wigan, Portsmouth, Sunderland, there are plenty of others. 

“We haven’t finished signing players. There will be more players come into this club. Integrating new lads can be difficult, we might start the season a little bit bumpy, but there are 46 games in a league campaign. At the end of a season league tables don’t tell lies and hopefully we will be in the correct position."

He added: “I’m delighted with the business we've done so far. I’ve had great support from Mark (Ashton), the owners, from everyone at the club. The new performance lads have come in and been terrific. My own staff have come in and been terrific. There’s a real good camaraderie and feelgood factor around the club which I enjoy. It’s onwards and upwards for us. 

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“We’re not stupid. We’ve been around football long enough to know there are bumps and bruises along the way, but we will have a really united club this year with one goal, which is trying to be promoted. 

“We’ll get after everyone. We will not take a backwards step. That’s how we play. We’ll get beat, we’ll get flattened sometimes, but we’ll keep marching forwards."