Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 8°C

min temp: -1°C

Search
Kings of Anglia Issue 9 Magazine Offer

Stuart Watson’s Sunday Verdict: Shock therapy was required – let’s go on a journey with Hurst

PUBLISHED: 12:54 12 August 2018 | UPDATED: 14:23 12 August 2018

Ipswich Town manager Paul Hurst applauds the travelling fans at Rotherham. Photo: Pagepix

Ipswich Town manager Paul Hurst applauds the travelling fans at Rotherham. Photo: Pagepix

Pagepix Ltd 07976 935738

Ipswich Town lost 1-0 at Rotherham United yesterday. STUART WATSON gives his considered Sunday verdict.

Paul Hurst speaks to the media following Town's last-gasp defeat at the New York Stadium. Photo: PagepixPaul Hurst speaks to the media following Town's last-gasp defeat at the New York Stadium. Photo: Pagepix

Owning the process and trusting in the plan.

Those were the buzz phrases of Gareth Southgate amidst England’s unlikely run to the World Cup semi-finals earlier this summer. And they are phrases that are equally apt for Ipswich Town as Paul Hurst attempts a very similar mission.

The true triumph of the Three Lions was getting the people to fall back in love with their national side following years of growing disconnect, disillusionment and apathy.

That, ultimately, is Hurt’s modus operandi at Portman Road. And we must all keep that in mind following Saturday’s 1-0 last-gap defeat at Rotherham United.

One point from two opening games against newly-promoted sides naturally gets that devil on the shoulder talking louder. Has too much been changed too soon? Has the baby been thrown out with the bathwater? Is this all too big a risk for such an uncompromising league?

MORE: Fuller Flavour: Let’s hope Hurst has found some more lower league gems

Players who have departed accounted for 48 of the 60 goals scored in all competitions last season (80%) and 191 of the 506 league starts (38%). None of the nine that have arrived have any experience of note at Championship level or above.

Shock therapy was required though. It’s boiling frog syndrome. If a frog is put suddenly into boiling water, it will jump out. But if the frog is put in tepid water which is then brought slowly to the boil, it will not perceive the danger and will be cooked to death. Not a pleasant analogy, but one which highlights the dangers of comfort zones. That’s what was happening to Ipswich Town.

MORE: Stu says: Five observations following Ipswich Town’s 1-0 defeat at Rotherham United

Back to the England comparison. Southgate felt like a new breed of manager: Open, measured, relatable. Hurst exudes the same style of leadership. He’s clear on what he wants to do and, crucially, he wants everyone else to join him on the journey.

Fans invest not just financially, but emotionally, in their team. It’s only right they are told, with a reasonable amount of detail, what the thinking is.

MORE: Hurst has spoken to Dozzell and Nydam about potential loan departures

Hurst is doing that and it will buy him football’s most precious commodity – patience.

Is there room for improvement from the first two games? Loads. Have there been encouraging signs in both? Plenty. It’s already easier on the eye. On Saturday, the team had 63% possession, produced 16 shots on goal and forced 12 corners. That’s already a fry cry from ironic cheers greeting the long-awaited first shot on target.

MORE: ‘We need three players in and we’ve only got two loans to use’ – Hurst on Garner exit and Oshilaja bid

As Hurst and his staff’s methods slowly get ingrained, and the players gradually begin to gel, the results will surely come. And when they don’t it will still be a lot more fun to watch.

Town have to keep owning the process. And we have to keep trusting in the plan.

Train services are suspended between Ipswich and Felixstowe due to a signal fault on the line.

A fresh purge of Suffolk’s potholes with an innovative road repair machine is set to kick off this week, thanks to cash from the Chancellor’s Budget.

Get ready to feel the love as a Brit award-winning band is set to perform at Newmarket Nights in 2019.

Three lives were lost over a weekend of tragedy on the region’s roads.

A Suffolk authority promoting campaigns to stop smoking has reduced its pension investments in tobacco firms – but says it still will not disinvest in cigarette firms entirely.

Jennifer Pearson from Felixstowe claims she had dog mess shoved through her letter box, her tyres slashed, and even had people spit at her – leaving her youngest daughter in tears.

Fears have been raised that Suffolk may have a systemic problem with how children’s homes are run after a third establishment was given a poor Ofsted rating in the last 10 weeks.

Suffolk may have enjoyed an almost frost-free winter so far, but the big freeze descended on one town this weekend and so did scores of visitors enticed by the ice.

Suffolk County Council will review its contract commissioning and procurement of services in a bid to help prevent modern slavery.

Superheroes and famous faces from the world of sci-fi came together for a comic convention in Ipswich.

Most read

Hot Jobs

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Newsletter Sign Up

Ipswich Star daily newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

MyDate24 MyPhotos24