Cotterill hadÂ met with the Blues' new owner for talks over his plans for the club after assuming control at Fratton Park.
The PompeyÂ bossÂ feltÂ his team neededÂ strengthening, with his squad badly lackingÂ depth.
But at the time Cotterill believedÂ adopting a softly-softly manner with Chainrai wouldÂ reap the best dividends.
He hoped that could see the Hong Kong businessman deliver money for him to reinforce for a concerted play-off push in January.
Speaking to The News, Cotterill said: '˜I don't know whether we will start purchasing players now, unless anything comes along that we feel is a bargain.
'˜That isn't me telling them that, it's me suggesting that.
'˜In the meantime, I think you have to show them why you want a few things.
'˜I'm not shy in coming forward with things. But I need to approach this one right, I feel.
'˜They need to have a plan '“ not just me knocking on their door asking for x, y and z.
'˜I may just get more in the long run if I approach it right.
'˜I won't bite my lip, don't worry about that.
'˜The January window can be a bad time to buy unless you get hold of someone who will be out of contract at the end of the season, when you can potentially get them at a bargain fee.
'˜But they may get to a position in January where he might think it's worth speculating.
'˜It's easier to say that than do it, though.'