Joe happy with angry players

JOE Royle is quite happy that players are getting angry at not playing.Far from being concerned at the outbursts in the EADT by Martijn Reuser, fuming at not starting, and Shefki Kuqi, dismayed at being substituted, the Blues boss sympathises and is pleased to see the players care.

JOE Royle is quite happy that players are getting angry at not playing.

Far from being concerned at the outbursts in the EADT by Martijn Reuser, fuming at not starting, and Shefki Kuqi, dismayed at being substituted, the Blues boss sympathises and is pleased to see the players care.

He has also had to deal with Drissa Diallo and Fabian Wilnis who have been dropped recently but again believes it sums up the tremendous will to win at the club and the fantastic collective squad spirit.

Royle said: "Whatever you say about these players you can not fault their dedication to the club and their spirit, because they keep bouncing back.


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"The spirit as a team is phenomenal. I have a picture at home of them celebrating the winner at Crystal Palace and I was delighted to see that physical pyramid with Shefki the scorer at the bottom. It shows how everyone is in it together."

Royle warned there could be even more disappointment for some players but hopes that will help push Ipswich into the play-offs and beyond.

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"I don't mind players being unhappy at being out of the side but at the same time I would like players to see the bigger picture. Players like Fabian and Shefki who came off at Gillingham, not injured, to look at it overall and see that the side won and say great.

"There will be more changes by the end of the season because that is football."

With a virtually full-strength squad to choose from – Chris Makin is out for the rest of the season while Pablo Counago won't return from a groin strain for at least another 10 days – Royle knows he can't please everyone.

Kuqi told the EADT of his displeasure at being substituted at Priestfield so Royle and Willie Donachie went through the tape of Kuqi's involvement on Saturday and hopes he now understands why he was pulled off. He has also spoken with Diallo who was not in the 16 against Sunderland but had a big impact when he returned against Gillingham.

Royle said: "Drissa was desperately unhappy at not being involved against Sunderland and I tried to explain why and like a good pro he is he went away, knuckled down and I thought he was terrific at Gillingham when he came on."

And Royle was not surprised that Reuser revealed in the EADT that he was looking to quit Town in the summer in his frustration at not commanding a regular starting spot, despite so many match-winning heroics as a substitute.

Royle said: "I have felt his anger and indignation when he has been sitting behind me on the bench and the way he has looked at me when he comes on and great – that is what we want him to do.

"I like him immensely as a man and as a player, he represents the club well. If he wants to go in the summer and finds a club that suits him then we have already said we will give him a free. But, if we make the Premiership and we can afford to keep him we will then see what happens."

Reuser has made 57 of his 110 appearances as a substitute, a lot of them long before Royle took over.

He said: "It is not just myself who has thought he is a top-class sub.

"The midfield has been exceptional this season, everywhere we go opposing managers tell me that, then do you change it to get Martijn in?

"He wants to start games and who knows? There may be times.

"What he does is an art. David Fairclough at Liverpool was never the same player when he started games. Look at Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. They made their names as a super-sub and have a bag full of medals each to show how good they are."

Tommy Miller is still struggling with a hamstring injury and has an outside chance of making the home game against Nottingham Forest. He is on standby for Scotland's friendly with Denmark next Wednesday but Town are hoping he will not be involved as they travel to play Sheffield United on the Friday.

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