Robinson’s verdict on Pompey exit

AFC Wimbledon's Paul Robinson with the Sky Bet League Two Trophy

AFC Wimbledon's Paul Robinson with the Sky Bet League Two Trophy

Pompey chief executive Mark Catlin. Picture: Joe Pepler

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PAUL ROBINSON promised there were no hard feelings after being ditched by Pompey.

And the defender backed Paul Cook to be the man to guide the Blues out of League Two.

Ten months after being shown the door at Fratton Park, Robinson is celebrating promotion to League One with AFC Wimbledon.

The centre-half turned in a man-of-the-match performance at Wembley on Monday as the Dons gained promotion via the play-offs.

A 2-0 win over Pompey’s conquerors, Plymouth Argyle, sparked jubilant scenes at the home of football.

It marked a huge turnaround for Robinson who was told he had no Blues future shortly after being made skipper by Cook.

The 34-year-old was left devastated by that move but is now celebrating his side’s remarkable rise.

Wimbledon claimed their sixth promotion since being formed in the Combined Counties league in 2002 – with Robinson playing a key role.

The Londoner stated he has no issue with Cook, though, who texted him congratulations after his side’s semi-final success over Accrington.

‘The way things happened at Portsmouth was just football,’ said Robinson.

‘We both shook hands at the end of the day and then moved on.

‘That’s football. I was gutted to leave Portsmouth, but I understood that’s the way it goes.’

Robinson admitted he was disappointed that he wasn’t being joined in League One next season by his former side.

He always anticipated Pompey would go up after leaving the club, but feels Cook is the right man to guide the club forward.

‘I’m gutted for Portsmouth,’ added Robinson.

‘I had a strong feeling they were going to be promoted.

‘The manager and the way he was going about things made me think it would be the case.

‘He’d put together a good team and I really thought it was going to be their year.

‘I think there may have been a little bit of misfortune about it

‘Maybe there were just a few key issues at the wrong times. It’s one of those things.

‘I do think it’s been another good season of improvement for Portsmouth.

‘They’ve moved forward and got into the play-offs.

‘It’s just been those few little issues with injuries which hurt them.

‘That and the Michael Smith loan coming to an end at the wrong time, too.

‘But you’ve got an excellent manager there and I have every belief they will come back stronger next season.

‘I think he’ll be looking to improve it just that little bit extra.

‘I’m sure when that happens they will be comfortably in the top three next season.

‘He’s put together a good squad. I think it might be just a couple of players short, but they’ll get there.’

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