Cook won’t contemplate familiar Pompey feeling

Christian Burgess, centre, celebrates victory at Carlisle with Michael Doyle and Amine Linganzi
Christian Burgess, centre, celebrates victory at Carlisle with Michael Doyle and Amine Linganzi
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Paul Cook has been here before.

There was Newport County to deflate the elation of victory at rivals Accrington Stanley.

There was Exeter to disperse the joy of topping the League Two table at Bristol Rovers.

This term, a gut-wrenching home defeat to Stevenage occurred in the glorious aftermath of an impressive Luton triumph.

So near – yet, repeatedly, Pompey discover themselves to be far away.

Now Morecambe visit Fratton Park, placed 13th in the table with a backdrop of ownership turmoil involving the familiar name of Joseph Cala.

Cook’s troops head into tonight’s fixture still buoyant from their magnificent 3-0 victory at promotion rivals Carlisle on Saturday.

Certainly one of the finest results of a regime which came to Pompey power in May 2015.

Situated three points from the top three with a game in hand, the Blues are tantalisingly placed for the run-in.

Unquestionably, they cannot afford another morale-sapping low following their Brunton Park high.

Cook said: ‘I would agree with you and disagree with you about bad results following good ones.

‘I don’t think we ever factor in that there is another team in a game.

‘If you look at all matches, who has a divine right to win anything? No-one has. You would think it would be easy, but it’s not.

‘Everybody who comes to Fratton Park raises their game and wants to beat Portsmouth Football Club badly. What’s going to change? Nothing.

‘We have got to keep on believing in what we are doing and keep working away.

‘It would be great if we could create the same atmosphere we did against Blackpool, that was one of those really enjoyable nights.

‘We’ve had a really balanced team for the last few games and are on an okay run at the minute. We always get that little bit of added pressure but our lads deal with it well.

‘For us, is the run-in going to be more pressure? I don’t think it is, I feel we are in a good place.

‘Does that guarantee us anything? No. You must work hard for the results.’

Morecambe defeated Grimsby 1-0 at the weekend through an early Lee Molyneux goal.

It stretches their run to one loss in 10 matches – a period which has seen them collect 1-1 draws at both Doncaster and Carlisle.

Cook is not drawn in by discussions on Pompey’s previous bouts of choking – he’s focused on another giant stride.

He added: ‘If you look at us and our record you just keep going.

‘What have we learnt? Last year we conceded so many late goals, this year we have scored so many.

‘There are a million factors we can put into different stuff. We have 55 points and are going to do our best to get as many points as we can.

‘Where will that take us? Nothing is decided, we just have a tough game to focus on tonight against a very good side in Morecambe.’