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‘Major gamble’ – Former player applies for Ipswich Town job: The Verdict

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Ipswich Town are on the hunt for a new manager having relieved Paul Cook of his duties – and one name in the hat is Shefki Kuqi, who has applied for the vacant role according to BBC Radio Suffolk (via Ipswich Star).

The former player has already got some managerial experience but is yet to test his mettle in England – and this could be the chance to do it.

The Tractor Boys though may fancy a manager who has more knowledge in getting teams out of League One, which is exactly what they want right now. However, the lure of bringing in the former striker could certainly be tempting for those in power at Portman Road.

But would it be the right call? Should he be given the job? Here are some of our writers to give their verdict on the vacancy…

Quiz: Has James Norwood ever scored a goal for Ipswich Town at each of these 26 stadiums?

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Portman Road?

Jordan Rushworth

Ipswich Town are facing a major decision that is going to determine the direction of travel for them at least for the rest of the campaign if not beyond when it comes to appointing their new manager.

Shefki Kuqi has put his name up for consideration, and he does have a link with the club from his spell at Portman Road where he managed to fire home an impressive 20 goals in all competitions in the 2004/05 campaign for them. That would mean that he would have an instant rapport with supporters who would be willing to give him a chance to make a real go of it.

He has managed to get experience as a manager in his native Finland with him taking charge of FC Honka initially where he struggled somewhat for results and won just eight out of 39 games. However, during his spells with both PK-35 Vantaa and most recently FC Inter Turku he enjoyed a lot more success in terms of his win percentages.

It is clear that he wants to get a chance in the English game and where better to start than with his ambitious former club. However, it would be a major gamble for the Tractor Boys to take at this point and you can not help but think they need someone a little more proven in the third tier.

Toby Wilding

This feels like it could be something of a risky appointment in Ipswich in all honesty.

Admittedly, Kuqi was a hugely popular figure at Portman Road in his playing days, and that could mean the fans could give him more leeway than they might with another manager.

However, he has been out of the management game for a few years now, and given he was not the most successful during his time as a manager in his native Finland, you do wonder whether he could cope with the challenge of a League One promotion battle.

Indeed, we have seen at other clubs that appointing iconic former players as managers can go badly, and given the impact on a reputation that could have and which no-one wants to see, this could be one that is better left alone.

Joshua Cole

Whilst Kuqi did become a fans favourite at Ipswich during his playing career, he may struggle to live up to the weight of expectations if he is appointed as the club’s new manager.

The Tractor Boys will still be hoping to achieve promotion to the Championship this season and thus may need to turn to an experienced individual for inspiration in order to achieve this goal.

When you consider that Kuqi has never worked as a manager in England, he could find it difficult to lead Ipswich into a new dawn.

By switching their attention to someone who knows exactly what it takes to succeed at this level, the Tractor Boys could potentially emerge as legitimate contenders for a play-off place in 2022.


Writer for Football League World.

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: ‘Major gamble’ – Former player applies for Ipswich Town job: The Verdict

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