Pompey boss Paul Cook remains upbeat after Crawley ‘learning curve’

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Paul Cook admitted he was happy with a point at Crawley, despite dominating possession at the Checkatrade.com Stadium.

Pompey were held to a goalless draw by the Red Devils, as the hosts got men behind the ball in an attempt to nullify their visitors’ attacking threat.

It was a tactic employed throughout the game – and one that denied the Blues a fourth win in a row as Crawley held firm at the back.

Cook admitted he was tempted to switch from his tried-and-tested 4-2-3-1 formation in an attempt to force what would have been a well-deserved winner.

However, he said he resisted the temptation, believing such an approach could have proved costly and put an end to his side’s impressive unbeaten start to the new campaign.

‘I think for our supporters, tonight was a little bit of a learning curve,’ said Cook.

Ben Davies pushing forward. Picture: Joe Pepler

Ben Davies pushing forward. Picture: Joe Pepler

‘When you get a team like that who get that many people behind the ball it’s very difficult for anyone to break it down.

‘I watched Reading play Crawley here in pre-season and Crawley won 1-0 in a very, very similar game.

‘We had to be patient and even I wanted to go two up front and put more balls into the box.

‘Unfortunately, I don’t feel we are ready for it and I think by doing that it might have lead to our downfall and that is something I don’t want to risk.

‘I feel at the minute we look like a very competent team.

‘If we are not going to win, we make sure we draw, just keep picking points up because with the side we’ve got and the support we’ve got we’ll certainly win some football matches.’