Cook denies latest Chaplin rumours amid Cherries interest

Pompey striker Conor Chaplin Picture: Joe Pepler

Pompey striker Conor Chaplin Picture: Joe Pepler

Carlisle boss Keith Curle   Picture: Joe Pepler

Carlisle boss: Pompey expectation can breed anxiety

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PAUL Cook laughed off interest in Conor Chaplin and insisted he isn’t aware of any bids for the youngster.

The striker has scored five goals in 17 appearances so far this term.

The Blues Academy graduate is enjoying his longest run in the first team, having started eight games in row.

In the process he has established himself as a vital member of Cook’s side.

He is expected to retain his starting place for the trip to Cheltenham Town on Saturday.

Chaplin recently signed a new contract with the club, committing himself to Fratton Park until 2019.

Having now featured 64 times and scored 17 goals for Pompey since making his debut against Accrington Stanley in December 2014, the 19-year-old has regularly attracted the interest of bigger clubs.

Premier League Bournemouth are the latest to be linked with the Worthing-born youngster.

They join Fulham, Ipswich Town and Queens Park Rangers, among others, on the list of reported admirers.

But when questioned on the rumours linking the striker with a move away, Cook joked he would only be visiting Bournemouth on a day trip.

He said: ‘Is he going there on a day out? I didn’t think the transfer window was open.

‘Ask me again in January.

‘There has always been interest in Conor, probably from well before I came here.

‘I am not aware of anything from Bournemouth going on.

‘You’d expect interest in your good players, it would be unsettling if there was none.

‘It’s part and parcel of football.’

– JAMES AYLES

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