Wilson’s Wisdom: James Dunne didn’t fit Paul Cook’s Pompey vision

James Dunne Picture: Joe Pepler
James Dunne Picture: Joe Pepler
Have your say

We all know Pompey’s 2014-15 campaign was a disappointment, but there were some positives to come out of it.

Jed Wallace, Paul Robinson, Matt Tubbs and James Dunne would have topped most Pompey fans’ polls on their best players of last term.

Spot the theme?

Dunne became the third member of the quartet to depart this week and you get the feeling that Tubbs may not be far behind.

Paul Cook wanted his own players in and you can’t argue with that.

If he needed proof big changes were required, he only had to point at the League Two table.

We may never know the full reasons behind Dunne’s exit but he was clearly never part of Cook’s plans from day one.

The midfielder missed out on the summer trip to Portugal with his wife due to give birth, which seemed reasonable at the time.

But a few niggling injuries then hampered his pre-season knocking him down the pecking order and his Pompey future looked bleak.

Knee surgery last term slowed a promising start to his career and it subsequently restricted the amount of training he can do, which affected his general fitness.

Others have claimed that Dunne’s reluctance to uproot his family from south London played a part, although I’ve always found that one hard to fathom.

If he turns up on time and puts in the required work, why should it matter where he chooses to live, especially on a short contract?

Perhaps the reality is that Cook simply felt he could find a better player to suit his preferred way of playing.

Dunne is an aggressive ball-winning midfielder.

In Cook’s vision of his team, Pompey dominate possession.

I rated Dunne and thought he gave Pompey a nastier edge that they had been missing.

But sometimes good players just don’t quite fit the mould.