Pompey boss: No regrets over Checkatrade Trophy policy

Pompey boss Paul Cook Picture: Joe Pepler

Pompey boss Paul Cook Picture: Joe Pepler

Milan Lalkovic. Picture: Joe Pepler

Winger lands back at Pompey

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Paul Cook believes his Checkatrade Trophy selection policy is justified.

Pompey have been issued with a £15,000 fine by the Football League, having been found guilty of three times breaching selection criteria.

We have done nothing wrong in that competition, but the powers-that-be deem we have to get fined

Paul Cook

The punishment was anticipated by the Blues – and will be offset by £15,000 prize money earned from their group stage results.

Regardless, an appeal has been lodged by the club, who are one of 12 to have been punished by Football League chiefs.

Cook, however, has no regrets over his team choices for the games against Yeovil, Reading under-23s and Bristol Rovers.

And he cites subsequent League Two wins over Crawley, Leyton Orient and Mansfield as showing his approach was worth it.

He said: ‘We knew we were getting fined before we did it. Mark Catlin and the board of directors knew what we were trying to do.

‘For me as manager, in the three Saturdays after we played in the Checkatrade Trophy we won three league games.

‘So that’s brilliant, no problem at all.

‘Last year we got dragged into cup competitions, regardless of whether they are good or bad, and we now have clear water, which I am delighted about.

‘We can focus on the promotion campaign.

‘I was disappointed we lost 4-3 at Yeovil in the first game, I felt the team was strong enough. Apart from that, we have drawn 2-2 against Reading under-23s and won 1-0 against Bristol Rovers.

‘We have done nothing wrong in that competition, but the powers-that-be deem we have to get fined.’

Meanwhile, Bristol Rovers have been fined £3,000 after substituting keeper Kelle Roos for Will Puddy in the third minute of their Fratton Park clash.

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