ANDY AWFORD has taken Pompey back to basics to shore up their defence.
Joe Devera revealed the Blues caretaker boss has worked on ensuring his side show resolve as they make the long trip to Hartlepool tomorrow.
Awford believes the desire to keep the ball out of their goal has been missing from Pompey, as they wilt in games.
They have now shipped 13 goals in their five-match losing run as they go to Victoria Park.
Devera explained the short time Awford has been working with the players has focused on being able to repel sustained pressure.
He said: ‘I think Awfs was a defender and he’ll be a big help for us.
‘He’s taken us back to basics. We’re doing that and taking things from there. It’s definitely back to basics and it is what is needed. We need to concentrate more on defending as a unit.
‘We need to get together.’
Devera admitted Pompey resorted to long-ball tactics as they folded against Southend, and have to avoid a repeat of ‘lumping it’ tomorrow.
He said: ‘When they went down to 10 men on Tuesday it almost knocked us out of our stride.
‘We kept on lumping it.
‘I think we, as a team, thought we’d done enough.
‘They kept plugging away and pounding us, and eventually got in.
‘We need to show more strength than that.’