I am pretty much ALWAYS in line with Tester since he is damn near all knowing. Also since his idea is perfectly logical AND the cheaper one to try first.....follow his lead....if/when it doesnt solve the issue...then you are then stuck with my assessment. I went thru the same exact symptom with my FOrd Explorer and many other FOrds.... Tester and I are after the same EXACT thing here...just different routes. But you would ALWAYS go with the cheaper item in this system to change out first before the entire clutch.
My assesment is that you are NOT getting the full stroke on your clutch movement....Meaning...when you put your clutch to the floor....you arent getting enough "throw" on the throwout bearing....and subsequently the arm that engages and disengages the pressure plate/clutch.
This happens when the pressure plate steel spring fingers get fatigued....when they get fatigued they require more "throw" to fully disengage the clutch completely....only way to fix this in a Ford is to replace the entire clutch.
Your throw is set at the factory and is non adjustable....when the pressure plate steel fingers get fatigued....they need more throw to FULLY disengage the clutch.
Want to prove me right? AFTER YOU TRY TESTERS THEORY...YOU are left with my solution...UNFORTUNATELY....and My apologies.
HERE IS YOUR TEST.....Do your cold start while on a little hill....car facing nose downhill PARKING BRAKE ENGAGED.....try your clutch and 1st gear shift....BUT DO NOT ALLOW THE CAR TO MOVE.....SET THE PARKING BRAKE SO THE VEHICLE CANNOT ROLL.... You will probably notice it is hard or impossible to get into 1st gear...... THEN......remove the parking brake and allow the vehicle to roll downhill....and try to shift into first.........Bet it goes into first gear A LOT easier.....if it does.....you need a new clutch....Sorry.
I came to all this after several Ford Clutch failures...all premature actually...as they needed new clutches due to the pressure plate....rather than a worn out clutch friction disc .....THIS was AFTER I replaced the Clutch MASTER cylinder....which on all the Fords was actually a very small unit in line with the clutch pedal. After i replaced the clutch master and still had the same issue....I knew it was time for a new clutch....due to pressure plate spring finger fatigue....It would have been easy to solve if I could have somehow adjusted the clutch "THROW".....as you need more throw when you get fatigued pressure plate fingers
Sorry for the bad news....but as I have done in the past.....I went along with Testers idea...because it is a perfectly good assessment....and logical....and the cheaper and proper thing to do....after that fails....its clutch time