Boss pleased with development of Chaplin and Webster
There has been a good blend of youth and experience in Pompey’s side this season.
And two of the club’s younger players have done plenty to impress the Fratton faithful.
Adam Webster and Conor Chaplin will both be hoping to retain their place in the starting 11 at Exeter on Tuesday night.
The former grabbed the second goal in Saturday’s 2-1 triumph over Cambridge, while the latter teed-up Marc McNulty for the opener.
And Paul Cook is pleased with how the two academy graduates have developed over the course of the campaign.
The Blues boss said: “Adam’s going to grow and grow as a player and mature into a very fine footballer.
“He never causes us a minute’s problem, he’s in early every day and works hard on and off the pitch.
“Adam’s going to have a fantastic career – my hope is that it’s with us and in higher leagues.
“He’s still got a lot to learn and his decision making in certain areas needs to improve, but we’re pleased with his progress.
“Conor’s goalscoring record speaks for itself, but there’s a time and place for young players to develop.
“I’m not sure I’d argue against the fact that he should have had more minutes on the pitch this season.
“But loan players coming in will restrict the chances for young players when you’re in the pursuit of success.
“The balance must be right, but Conor falls into the same category as Adam – he wants to be a footballer and is prepared to work hard.
“It’s a great opportunity for him now to show everyone that he should be starting more games.”
Cook has revealed that Pompey may have to adapt their style on occasions in order to reach their goals.
He said: “We set up to be a bit more negative than usual against Cambridge, with our full-backs not getting as far forward.
“We’re trying to play opposition teams at their own game a bit – it’s not necessarily how we want to play, but we want to win more for our supporters.
“Now and then your principles can be pushed to the side a little bit in your pursuit of winning games.
“We’ve got a tough test at Exeter and it’s a place where we need to go and get something to put the run together that everyone’s craving.”
Watch Cook’s thoughts on the game below or subscribe to Pompey PlayerHD for extended interviews with the manager and Ryan Fulton.