Danny and Nicky Cowley have simply been a revelation towards the team, the fans and also aspects of the community. Here is my take on their two weeks in charge of Pompey.
The first place to start is the team. To be blunt, it looks a side much different to what we saw for the past four years under Kenny Jackett.
Previously, when the likes of MacGillivray, Whatmough or Raggett received the ball, it was immediately sent long. This direct approach worked wonders back in the 2018/19 campaign, when 6ft5 Oli Hawkins was the target man.
However, the direct and aerial approach really has not had the same impact since the arrival of John Marquis in the summer of ’19, and unfortunately it was the approach that Jackett stuck by until he departed the club three weeks ago.
Now under the Cowley brothers, it is safe to say their approach is a little different. The ball is not only being played on the floor more, but is also being played out from the back more. This style will take some getting used to, but it has certainly paid dividends so far.Embed from Getty Images
Another clear aspect of change that has been reignited by the brothers is the high press, and willingness to win the ball back.
Rather than sitting deep and letting the opponents have possession, the cries from the touchline are clear and obvious, “keep pushing” and with the attacking talent we hold within the team, it is definitely a tactic that the fans will get behind.
To add to this, there is a new cohesion between those in the squad, along with new ideas, and most importantly, a newfound confidence. We can see this through the increase in attacking, quick paced, one touch football, that was most certainly lacking towards the end of the Jackett regime.
The Cowley brothers haven’t just revitalised the team, but the fans as well. After a few years of largely unentertaining football, these last two weeks have been heaven for Pompey supporters.
Football being played on the deck rather than airborne, high pressing, high work rate and total commitment by those on the pitch. That’s all Pompey fans want to see.
Their honesty and detailed levels of communication to the fans has not gone unnoticed either, bringing the love of the game back to the south coasts’ most successful club.
The icing on the cake for the fans, is what Danny and Nicky are doing within the community. Despite them taking up this job for what could only be until the end of the season, they’ve moved into an apartment in the city 200 miles or so away from their families in Lincoln, showing sheer dedication, and their willingness to succeed at this club.
In the midst of all this, they’ve even found time to go and watch Pompey academy games, ranging from the Under 8’s to the Under 18’s.
They’ve been here two weeks, but have revitalised those in connection with the club.
With this renewed hope within the team and fanbase, I have no doubt that Pompey can make the play-offs come the end of the season.
Most likely too little too late to make the top two, but let’s not forget, this is Pompey, and we only do things the hard way…Play up Pompey!
Main photo: Losing My Sight UK