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Kings of Anglia Issue 9 Magazine Offer

‘I was never told anything... at least have the bravery to tell me’ - Bart on being dropped by Hurst for Norwich clash

PUBLISHED: 14:24 21 November 2018 | UPDATED: 18:36 21 November 2018

Bartosz Bialkowski is back in the team after being dropped by Paul Hurst earlier in the season. Picture: Steve Waller    www.stephenwaller.com

Bartosz Bialkowski is back in the team after being dropped by Paul Hurst earlier in the season. Picture: Steve Waller www.stephenwaller.com

© Copyright Stephen Waller

Ipswich Town goalkeeper Bartosz Bialkowski discussed being left out of the team by former boss Paul Hurst, new coach Jimmy Walker and Paul Lambert’s positive impact when he spoke to the media this afternoon.

Bartosz Bialkowski has spoken of a renewed positivity under Paul Lambert.    Picture: STEVE WALLERBartosz Bialkowski has spoken of a renewed positivity under Paul Lambert. Picture: STEVE WALLER

Q: How’s the international break been and how are things under the new regime?

BB: It’s good to have had a couple of days off but we’ve been working very hard under the new manager. It’s all looking very positive.

On his first day he showed us and told us how he wants to play and we’ve been working very hard on that since on the training pitch. I think we’ve showed in the two games under him that we have taken it on board.

Q: How important was it for him to bring a positivity to the camp? Were heads pretty low?

Bartosz Bialkowski, pictured on the bench at Birmingham. Photo: PagepixBartosz Bialkowski, pictured on the bench at Birmingham. Photo: Pagepix

BB: Most of us, if not all of us, were very low because of the situation we were in but the gaffer just wants us to enjoy ourselves. He’s such a positive guy and all we need to do is enjoy ourselves on the pitch and go from there.

Q: How low had it got? Not just for you but for the team as a whole?

BB: When you can’t win games you are low because winning games makes the world look brighter and everything’s much better.

When you’re not winning and not performing well you’re down. You try and keep yourself up but it’s difficult.

I think it’s the best thing that happened to this club that Paul Lambert came in. I never knew him before but as soon as he came in he brought that positivity that we needed.

We actually believe in ourselves again, which is the most important thing in football. If you don’t believe in yourself you won’t get far but, when you do, you will go far.

Q: Going back to September, how difficult was it when you were left out of the team for the Norwich game?

BB: It was a shock for me, I’m not going to lie.

Dean Gerken took Bialkowski's place in goal for the Norwich game. Picture: ARCHANTDean Gerken took Bialkowski's place in goal for the Norwich game. Picture: ARCHANT

I knew I wasn’t performing that well but I only found out an hour-and-a-half before the game – the biggest game for the fans, for me and for the club. I was never told anything or spoke to the old gaffer before of after and I was disappointed, obviously.

What I had to do was keep training hard and do everything to be ready again.

Q: How were you told? Just when the team came out with no one-to-one?

BB: The manager just read the team out in the dressing room. That’s how I found out.

Bialkowski was back in goal at Leeds for what was Hurst's final game in charge. Picture PagepixBialkowski was back in goal at Leeds for what was Hurst's final game in charge. Picture Pagepix

Q: Did you get reasons after the game?

BB: No, nothing.

Q: Did you consider knocking on his door to find out why?

BB: I just thought, surely, that he would pull me aside and tell me the reason behind it.

That never happened.

Q: Did you feel at the time there was a lack of respect there?

BB: I think you need to respect every single person whether he’s a player, a manager or someone working at the training ground.

If he wanted to drop me then that’s fine for me but at least have the bravery to tell me about it. But he never spoke to me and I thought that was a bit disrespectful.

Bialkowski says Gerken was not told he was dropped for the game at Leeds in November until the team was revealed. Picture PagepixBialkowski says Gerken was not told he was dropped for the game at Leeds in November until the team was revealed. Picture Pagepix

That’s how I see it from my point of view and he’ll have a different one. But listen, he’s gone now so it’s totally forgotten because I’m enjoying my football again.

Q: What about when you got back in the team? Did he explain why?

BB: No, nothing. He just read out the team.

It was exactly the same with Deano (Gerken) as well. He never told him.

Former Ipswich Town manager Paul Hurst, pictured at Leeds in October. Picture PagepixFormer Ipswich Town manager Paul Hurst, pictured at Leeds in October. Picture Pagepix

Q: You have a good relationship with Dean Gerken but was it difficult to be pleased for him?

BB: No, not at all because we have a really good relationship. Every time he played I kept my fingers crossed for him because that’s the way we are and we do everything to prepare for the game.

Q: Why do you think you were below your best at the start of the season?

BB: I have a few things in mind but I think I will keep that to myself for now. Maybe in the future I will tell everything about it but for now I’ll keep that to myself.

Bartosz Bialkowski was shocked to find himself on the bench for the game with Norwich in September.    Picture: STEVE WALLERBartosz Bialkowski was shocked to find himself on the bench for the game with Norwich in September. Picture: STEVE WALLER

Q: How much have you enjoyed working with new goalkeeping coach Jimmy Walker?

BB: He’s a brilliant guy. You cannot get bored with him which is a good thing because every day we are doing something different.

Sometimes you keep doing the same things every day and you can’t be fully at it, but Jimmy’s a funny guy. The chats we have are very funny and he’s certainly a character.

Q: He seems a similar character to Malcolm Webster…

Bartosz Bialkowski is enjoying life at Portman Road under Paul Lambert.    Picture: STEVE WALLERBartosz Bialkowski is enjoying life at Portman Road under Paul Lambert. Picture: STEVE WALLER

BB: Yes, he really is and he can’t stop talking which is good. We’re always having banter and he loves trying to put the ball in the top corner.

But that’s great because if you can save them in training you can do that in the games, too.

Q: How has your role changed under the new manager? It seems you have been asked to do a few things differently in terms of distribution?

BB: We have so many options now when you’re taking a goal kick, it’s unbelievable. It’s not just a long kick but also players who want the ball and that’s a big difference.

I’m enjoying it because before, when there was a back pass, the only option was to kick it long but now we can actually start playing football and go from there.

When I was at Southampton we tried to play on the back and did that in training, although I was on the bench.

So I guess it’s all a bit new for me so I’m enjoying it.

Q: Your kick led to an assist at Reading…

BB: I had one exactly the same in training the day before (also scored by Freddie Sears).

Two in two days is pretty good. I might have had one or two before but I can’t really remember.

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