Cook: No need for Pompey to panic

Matt Tubbs was unfortunate to be denied by the offside flag. Picture: Joe Pepler
Matt Tubbs was unfortunate to be denied by the offside flag. Picture: Joe Pepler
Have your say

Paul Cook reflected on an evening of frustration at Crawley and urged: Don’t panic.

Pompey dominated the Broadfield Stadium fixture yet had to settle for a goalless draw as the hosts were content for a point.

We must be patient. The hardest part is getting up there quicker and we tried

Paul Cook

Mark Yates’ men barely broke into the Blues’ penalty area, while they piled men behind the ball to ensure there was no way through for the visitors.

It means the unbeaten start to the campaign continues four games in, a statistic which pleases Cook.

Nonetheless, the scoreline was a galling one for the 1,706 away supporters present.

But Pompey’s manager believes patience remains the key to breaking sides down in pursuit of promotion.

He said: ‘I always felt we would score, I felt we would wear them down in the end.

‘It was great distances their lads were having to cover and if you keep moving the ball properly, eventually you can open them up and put quality crosses into the box.

‘Unfortunately it didn’t happen, but that’s life.

‘We just lacked that physicality in the box which 4-4-2 gives you and that will always be a debate for people over a pint, but the more direct you go sometimes can lead to other spaces for us to concede goals.

‘We must be patient, the hardest part is getting up there quicker and we tried, we brought Conor Chaplin on, while Jayden Stockley looks really lively at the minute and full of energy and life.

‘You have to keep telling the players to be patient because they want to take quick throw-ins and chase the ball and what it does is lead us to being out of position and not set. When we are set we are in complete control.

‘We are going to have disappointing days – I don’t think last night was one.

One source of disappointment for Cook was the ruling out of a Matt Tubbs goal in the second half.

Fed by a Nigel Atangana pass, the striker was pulled up for offside, a decision Cook afterwards refuted.

At the other end, keeper Brian Murphy was a complete spectator.

Cook added: ‘I thought Tubbs’ goal in the second half should have stood and if he scores that we win 1-0 and everyone’s feeling delighted.

‘I genuinely didn’t believe Crawley were going to score, I don’t know how many times they came into our half in the second half, Matt Clarke and Christian Burgess are playing really well at the moment.

‘Brian Murphy had one shot to deal with and I think that was their only attempt on goal in 90 minutes.’