Awford explains Barcham substitution

Andy Barcham. Picture: Joe Pepler
Andy Barcham. Picture: Joe Pepler
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Blues boss Andy Awford has lifted the lid on the decision to substitute Andy Barcham.

Boos rang out from some of the Fratton faithful when the left-winger was taken off in the 74th minute of Saturday’s defeat to Southend.

Ryan Taylor replaced Barcham as a chant of ‘You don’t know you you’re doing’ was aimed in Awford’s direction.

Barcham had been one of Pompey’s more impressive performers in the 2-1 defeat which has cast massive doubts over the manager’s future.

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But Awford explained his decision.

He said: ‘I wanted as many centre forwards on the pitch as possible.

‘I had taken Craig Westcarr off and had three strikers left (Taylor, Matt Tubbs and Paul McCallum) and wanted all three of them on the pitch.

‘That was the decision.

‘You get some decisions right and you get some wrong.

‘You only get them right when you win, it’s as simple as that.

‘They are the decisions you have to take as a manager.

‘In hindsight, which is a wonderful thing, maybe I could have taken a full-back off instead.

‘There was only one goal in it at the time and the coaching staff had a chat and I have to make a call – that is my job.

‘We went with the three lads up top to try to play closer together, that was the aim of the substitution.

‘Barcham was lively, especially in the first-half, when he was good we were good.

‘In the opening 25 minutes he was a big threat.

‘I just wanted to try something different, sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t, that is the job of the manager.’

Joe Pigott netted the winner for the Shrimpers after Ryan Leonard had levelled Adam Webster’s deflected header.