Paul Cook: Real Pompey are standing up
PAUL COOK believes the real Pompey are now surfacing.
And that is helping him to win over any fans who were sceptical about his stewardship of the Blues when he arrived last summer.
Pompey quite rightly earned plaudits for the quality of their performance in the FA Cup at Ipswich on Saturday.
Cook’s side had the better of it against the Tractor Boys – a fact acknowledged by their manager Mick McCarthy.
That made it just a single defeat in the past 12 games for the team with their campaign gaining momentum.
The season hasn’t been without problems, however, with breaking down sides at Fratton Park a challenge for Cook’s troops.
But the Scouser feels the Blues side are starting to show their true colours.
‘Earlier on in the season I didn’t want to engage with supporters too much,’ said the manager.
‘When people put everyone behind the ball it’s not as easy as everyone thinks.
‘I think people respect us a bit more now because they can see we are a good side.
‘We’ll have difficult days.
‘It was like that early on with the fans.
‘They are allowed to be sceptical over a new manager.
‘That can be the case with new players and systems.
‘Managers can come out and speak a lot of rubbish about those kinds of things.
‘But people are now seeing what this Portsmouth is about.’
Pompey again dominated possession at Ipswich and had 68 per cent of the ball over the 90 minutes.
That has been a constant this season, with Cook placing an ethos on pressing high and dictating proceedings.
That hasn’t stopped there being five 0-0 draws at Fratton Park, however, as teams come to town on the back foot.
Cook is confident his team are, and will continue, to do the right things, though.
He said: ‘It doesn’t make us successful but we are a good side with a good work ethic.
‘They know they will get that with me here as manager – we’ll pass the ball.
‘They know they won’t necessarily get a win every week or I won’t necessarily be a success.
‘But games we play we’ll play off the front foot, have a go and pass the ball.
‘Northampton is a good game, Wycombe is a good game and Carlisle is a good game.
‘At Fratton Park we haven’t seen as many good games. I don’t think it’s down to us!’
– JORDAN CROSS