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Fixture News

Cowley: We Felt It Was Playable

Boss reflects on decision to postpone Crewe contest

19 February 2022

Danny Cowley and David Artell speak to referee Martin Coy at Crewe
Photo: Daniel Chesterton

Danny Cowley felt that Pompey’s postponed League One contest at Crewe could have been played.

Persistent rain left standing water on the Alexandra Stadium by the time they arrived at the ground.

Both sides were keen for the match to go ahead, with the conditions set to improve as kick-off neared.

But Referee Martin Coy called it off with just over an hour until the scheduled start and Cowley felt he was in a tough position.

The Blues boss said: “We had a good look at the pitch and certainly felt it was playable, although there’s obviously been quite a lot of rain in the past few hours.

“When we arrived, the referee had already done an informal inspection and then he said he would need to make that a formal one.

“It's very easy to blame the officials, but Martin Coy is very experienced and it’s a very difficult decision to make.

"We thought it was possible – even if the fixture had to be put back a bit – but the officials have a lot of protocols that they have to follow."

Danny Cowley

“He obviously has to take into account the safety of the players and is the one who has to make the tough call.

“When he made the decision the pitch was unplayable, but we were still more than a hour from kick-off and the forecast was that the rain would stop.

“We thought it was possible – even if the fixture had to be put back a bit – but the officials have a lot of protocols that they have to follow and they’re just here to administer the laws, not make them.

“It’s really frustrating and I feel so sorry for the 1,500 Pompey fans who have made the long trip up to Crewe.

“We travelled up in Friday and know how tough it was to get up there during the storm, but it’s harder for them and there’s the cost implication, so we’re desperately disappointed.”

Pompey have not made an immediate return to the south coast, as they turn their attention to a midweek test.

Cowley said: “The plan is to travel to Crewe’s training ground to do some work – we could perhaps have a game against them there!

“We need to now prepare for what will be a very tough game at Shrewsbury, which comes around quickly.”


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