James Dunne determined to prove his Pompey worth

James Dunne Picture: Joe Pepler
James Dunne Picture: Joe Pepler
  • Dunne insists Pompey players must prove themselves to new boss
  • Midfielder admits his performances last season count for nothing
  • Fans’ favourite keen to build on displays last term

JAMES DUNNE insists his promising debut season for Pompey counts for nothing as he looks to impress new boss Paul Cook.

The combative midfielder joined the Blues last summer from Stevenage and was a key part of the side, making 36 appearances and scoring one goal in the League Two campaign.

There will be plenty of competition for places when we get back and I’m looking forward to it.

James Dunne

He would have played more games but a knee operation ruled him out for nearly two months in November and December.

And while the 25-year-old has yet to meet the new manager to find out how he fits into the plans, he is determined to prove his worth.

Dunne said: ‘I haven’t spoken to the new manager yet.

‘I’m sure that will happen before we get back or it may happen when we all report back for pre-season.

‘He might bring us in before to meet up or just wait until we all come back. It’s not a problem.

‘When you get a new manager in, it’s a blank sheet for everyone and you have to take your chance.

‘I remember when I was at Stevenage, the manager got sacked, the new manager came in and we didn’t get on. That’s football for you.

‘But everyone has got a clean slate.

‘There will be plenty of competition for places when we get back and I’m looking forward to it.’

Dunne is determined to recapture his form and fitness after revealing his knee operation had played a part in the second half of last season. He said: ‘I will be looking to kick on under the new manager from the way I started last season.

‘I thought I still did well in the second part of the season but probably not as well as the first half.

‘I got the knee injury and my training had to be cut back a bit, otherwise my knee would be knackered by the time I got to the game on the Saturday. It probably slowed me down a bit.’

Cook has clearly done his homework on Pompey’s existing players but Dunne has also tapped into the football grapevine to get an idea on what to expect from his new manager.

And the former Exeter man has also got some insight into Pompey’s latest recruit, Kyle Bennett.

Dunne added: ‘I’ve spoken to a few players who have worked under the manager and I’ve heard a lot of good things.

‘They told me he is a very good manager who likes his teams to play football.

‘So I’m looking forward to meeting him and getting the season going.

‘Every manager likes to bring in their own players and he has brought one in already.

‘I’ve played against Kyle a few times.

‘He is a very good player, a good winger and likes to get at players so I’m looking forward to playing with him.

‘A new manager coming in will always like to put his own stamp on things and bring in his own players.’