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Club News


21 November 2016

Cook looking forward to Luton clash

It is a fixture that Paul Cook has been eagerly anticipating for a while now.

And he is confident that Pompey’s trip to Luton will provide plenty of entertainment for those at Kenilworth Road on Tuesday evening.

Both sides are battling to break into the automatic promotion places, with the hosts currently one place – and two points – better off in fourth spot.

And Cook wants to see a clinical edge from his men after they failed to make the most of their chances in Saturday’s draw at Cheltenham.

The Blues boss said: “It’s a game I’ve been looking forward to for quite a while between two sides who will look to entertain.

“Both teams are capable of hurting the other and I’m sure that both will be taking to the pitch looking to do just that.

“I think you’ll see periods where each side will be in the ascendency and it’s just about who can cause the most damage when it’s their turn.

“The reality is that we’ve got to start converting more of our clear-cut chances when they come along.

“Luton, in my opinion, are the best team in the league – apart from Pompey because I would always back my own side.

“They’ve got experience mixed with youthful energy and there’s plenty of talent in their squad.

“At home they’ve probably suffered from teams going to Kenilworth Road, getting everyone behind the ball and stifling their style.

“Nathan Jones has come in as manager and done an absolutely fantastic job, with the players buying into what he wants them to do.”

Cook has already revealed that Michael Smith will start up front in place of the suspended Conor Chaplin.

He said: “Michael will come into the team on Tuesday. He’s been in a good place for a while now and the goal on Saturday was a little bit of icing on the cake.

“We can now look forward to him showing us why we brought him back to the club over the summer.

“He’s a fantastic player and is popular with the rest of the lads. When Luton see his name on the team-sheet, they’ll recognise him as a threat.”

Watch Cook’s thoughts on the game below or subscribe to Pompey PlayerHD for full pre-match content.

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