Cook determined to see Pompey entertain

Pompey boss Paul Cook Picture: Joe Pepler
Pompey boss Paul Cook Picture: Joe Pepler

PAUL COOK has called on Pompey to stick to their entertaining principles.

And the Blues boss is confident Crewe Alexandra will not try to negate his men by stifling the life out of them tomorrow.

Cook’s men go to Gresty Road looking to register their first win of the campaign.

That’s after racking up 23 shots at goal in the League Two curtain raiser against Carlisle United last weekend.

The Cumbrians put up a defensive wall after being reduced to 10 men – and operated without a striker.

Cook is upbeat the Railwaymen will be more ambitious, however – and that means a decent spectacle for supporters.

He said: ‘The lads are in a good frame of mind. We have good players.

‘Look at the goal attempts against Carlisle, come on.

‘There has to be a tinge of disappointment at the result, but could the players have done more? Not a chance.

‘There are one or two saying it’s the same old, same old. Well, I don’t think that’s watching the same as Yeovil last season. I was the manager in both of those games.

‘One game, I was raging and one I was content, because I know how we’d do if we played 46 games like that.

‘I’ve never played against a team with no attacker. Never.

‘The pleasing thing as manager is our club has become that now. That’s what we should be.

‘Crewe play with two up front in Chris Dagnall and Ryan Lowe.

‘We hope to see the team sheet with Dagnall and Lowe on it – because it will be a good game.

‘We may end up getting beat by them, but I guarantee we’ll hurt them, too.

‘You know that when you get two teams intent on having a match you normally get a good game.

‘If you get one team intent on not having a game it’s not going to be good.’

Cook’s indicated he’s likely to stick with the same starting XI used at Carlisle tomorrow.

That will mean going with a 4-2-3-1 formation despite a clamour from some fans for two strikers.

Cook said: ‘I think the subs last week sucked the life out of us. I thought we were playing well.

‘But logic tells you the supporters won’t have that if you stay the same for 90 minutes and don’t score.

‘There would have been a call for Hunt, Main and Chaplin to be on the pitch.

‘But we had Lalkovic, Smith, Baker, Roberts, Hunt and Chaplin out there. I physically couldn’t get any more on.

‘Carlisle are one of our competitors in this league. They came down and scored a great goal after we started well.

‘Then they have a man sent off which has a massive effect on things. Then they defend and get a point. But we created enough chances. That’s the reality of it.

‘I’m not going to apologise to our supporters for other teams being negative.’