Lawrence tips Ashdown to bounce back

Jamie Ashdown fails to deal with Shane Long's effort from outside the box
Jamie Ashdown fails to deal with Shane Long's effort from outside the box
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Liam Lawrence has backed Jamie Ashdown to bounce back from his Reading mistake.

The Blues keeper misjudged Shane Long’s long-range 30th-minute shot last weekend.

As a result, it bobbled past him to gift the hosts the opener.

Brian McDermott’s men went on to win 2-0, with Ricardo Rocha later sent off.

For Ashdown it was a rare error in what has been an impressive campaign.

That’s certainly the case in the eyes of Lawrence, who reckons the 30-year-old has been one of Pompey’s players of the season.

Next up is struggling Preston this weekend.

And the Blues skipper is confident Ashdown will be back to his best for the fixture.

He said: ‘For me, Jamie has been up there as one of our players of the year.

‘But he will be disappointed with that goal, though.

‘He said the ball has moved as well. These balls are moving all over the place and he knows he should have saved it.

‘I am not even saying he played badly against Reading or anything, he didn’t have much to do.

‘He didn’t play badly, I thought he did brilliant.

‘It was just one of those things and it happens.

‘Jamie will bounce back from that no problem and just get on with things.’

That same match saw Danny Webber return to the squad for the first time in more than a year.

The striker sustained an anterior cruciate ligament injury picked up at White Hart Lane last season.

Yet, after barely three weeks of full training, he was a surprise name on the squad list at Reading.

Steve Cotterill then threw Webber on in the 85th minute at the Madejski for an emotional comeback.

And Lawrence was delighted to see him team-mate return after battling back from his horror injury.

Lawrence added: ‘Congratulations to Danny.

‘It has been a horrendous injury so to come back and get his first game is tremendous.

‘He is training really hard and I am delighted for him and so are the lads.’