Pompey boss planning scouting shake-up

Pompey boss Paul Cook. Picture: Joe Pepler
Pompey boss Paul Cook. Picture: Joe Pepler
Pompey player Gareth Evans

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Paul Cook is planning to overhaul Pompey’s scouting network.

And the Blues boss has underlined his commitment to giving young talent a chance at Fratton Park.

But The News understands Cook is not interested in bringing in two non-league talents said to be on his radar.

Pompey have been linked with Dorking Wanderers winger Matt Briggs and Stockport striker Danny Lloyd.

Neither are currently under consideration at present, however.

Cook is keen to see others follow in the footsteps of Jamal Lowe and Nicke Kabamba, though, after the pair arrived from Hampton & Richmond.

Work is currently being carried out on that front but the Pompey manager is keen to see things develop.

He said: ‘Recruitment is the most overused word in football.

‘Every time you turn on TalkSport someone says a club’s recruitment has been bad.

‘It’s only scouting. It’s only the same thing as what it’s been forever. Now it’s called recruitment.

‘We’ve been to five games this week. I flew to Ireland last week.

‘We watch a lot of games and we are watching players all the time.

‘We have to have a set of people working at this club in relation to bringing in players to make the club better. That’s what we want to do.

‘We’re trying to grow as a club and for a flower to thrive it needs to blossom. It needs water to grow. Since coming in the focus has been to get out of this league.

‘My remit is to try to build a football club, though. That’s my job.

‘I want to do that to the best of my ability until someone tells me differently.’

Pompey’s success in the Premier League Cup has been built on using largely under-23 players.

Cook explained he would be prepared to use them all at senior level.

He said: ‘We must look at the younger players and have pride in the success of the under-23 team.

‘We’re seeing our younger lads come through.

‘We are seeing (Ben) Close and (Adam) May grow as players on loan.

‘We have also brought in Jamal Lowe and Nicke Kabamba.

‘There’s a real nucleus of youthfulness within the club.

‘Can we keep that going so they can blossom into first-team players for this club?

‘We think Bassy (Alex Bass) will be a good, young keeper.

‘So our production line must include him eventually being involved.

‘As we build up that goes for every position.

‘I’m a process manager. There has to be a ladder at a club.

‘If you look at any good club they can tell you, in general, who they think will play for the first team.

‘If I wasn’t prepared to play someone they shouldn’t be here. That’s my view.’