Teenage Kicks: Now to get over the line

Pompey boss Paul Cook. Picture: Joe Pepler

Pompey boss Paul Cook. Picture: Joe Pepler

Kal Naismith was gaffer for a day Phil Whyte's man of the match against Cambridge United. Photo by Joe Pepler

Pompey 2 Cambridge United 1: Gaffer for a day

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Six wins away from League One. By this evening it may even be just five.

I believe we can be confident 83 points will be enough to secure promotion from the fourth division.

After a season of ups and downs, Pompey are in a solid position to go up with less than 10 games to go.

Say what you like about the lack of solid competition for the automatic promotion spots, it still will take more than 80 points to go up – when you consider previous seasons.

However, as we know, Pompey’s biggest rival is themselves.

The Blues have finally found some consistency – with three wins on the bounce, which has been a rare achievement in the Paul Cook era.

Being cynical, it is more than possible that a shocker of a performance is just around the corner. It could even have come at Stevenage this afternoon.

Frustratingly, those displays have become a characteristic of Cook’s Pompey – two steps forward and then one step back.

And it is a string of wins that propels sides into convincing positions.

With the finishing line in sight, now would be the perfect time for the Blues to find their purple patch and win several games on the bounce. Five or six would secure promotion.

With emotions raw after the Crewe game, I found myself for the first time questioning Cook.

An avid supporter of him, I have always been convinced the Scouser would take us up.

But that performance against Crewe was all too familiar and could, in the end, prove Cook’s downfall if we are not promoted.

However, his side went on to emphatically prove the doubters wrong – with three consecutive wins, three clean sheets and 10 goals scored.

Pompey looked strong, assured and confident against Grimsby.

Maybe the dismal display against the Railwaymen provided a wake-up call.

There is talent in the Pompey squad but they need to turn up and perform if they are to win games.

And that is what they did against Crawley, Colchester and Grimsby – three professional displays.

The mood changes so quickly and now the Fratton faithful are singing about promotion.

At times like this, it is often hard to see the bigger picture.

But when you consider win-ratio, Cook is now Pompey’s most successful boss in the post-war period beside Harry Redknapp in his first spell.

The squad is set up for League One, I believe the players are more accustomed to that level.

Now the Blues must get over the finishing line.

And in a heartbeat there is belief Pompey can go up.

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