Pompey 1 Walsall 1: Gaffer for a day

Jack Whatmough, centre, was gaffer for a day Josh Sweetmans Pompey man of the match from Saturdays draw against Walsall
Jack Whatmough, centre, was gaffer for a day Josh Sweetmans Pompey man of the match from Saturdays draw against Walsall
Pompey winger Jamal Lowe

Lowe’s heading in the right direction with Pompey

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Gaffer for a day Josh Sweetman gives his verdict on Pompey’s 1-1 draw with Walsall.

What did you make of the performance?

Uninspired is the word I would use to describe it – we just never got going.

Physically, we really were not up for the challenge.

Amadou Bakayoko completely bullied us up front. Although he didn’t do much with the ball, he created space for Erhun Oztumer and he ran the game.

We didn’t turn up until the substitutes came off the bench.

So you thought the changes made the crucial impact?

We needed to change things and never looked like scoring before bringing Nicke Kabamba and Curtis Main on.

They gave us a physical presence and we looked a different team.

Were you surprised Carl Baker was omitted from the match-day squad?

I was surprised he wasn’t on the bench.

I personally don’t think he is a central midfielder and there are others I would play on the wing instead of him.

But he is vastly experienced and we need that when we’ve got the likes of Brandon Haunstrup and Adam May in the side.

I wouldn’t have started him but he should have been on the bench. He’s the sort of player you want coming on when you need a goal.

If Coventry want him, I’d let him go, however, if he’s not in Kenny Jackett’s starting plans.

Was it frustrating to see Pompey concede again so shortly after half-time?

It reminds me of a short while go when we kept conceding in the last minute.

To be honest, I don’t think Luke Leahy knew much about his goal, but Walsall kept and passed the ball well in the build-up to it.

We don’t switch on and it was weak. Milan Lalkovic didn’t track and, as much as I rate him, you need a winger who is going to help out the inexperienced Haunstrup.

Pompey need to switch on quicker, but I think it’s going to take quite a while for Kenny Jackett to stamp his authority on the team.

It was the same under Paul Cook and this league is a much bigger step-up than League Two.

And your man of the match?

Jack Whatmough was absolutely solid and won every header and tackle.

For someone of his age, especially playing at centre-half, you would expect him to make a mistake or two

But he dominated in the air and looks a defender beyond his years.