Pompey 3 Crawley 0: Gaffer for a day

Gaffer for a day Mark Harvey was impressed with substitute Michael Smith, left      Picture: Joe Pepler
Gaffer for a day Mark Harvey was impressed with substitute Michael Smith, left Picture: Joe Pepler
The under-repair South stand will not be used for the Bournemouth friendly. Picture: Colin Farmery

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Mark Harvey, 54, from Bedhampton, gives his take on the victory over Crawley Town.

A convincing Pompey win then.

Yes, it was a great game and all credit to Crawley for coming out and trying to play football.

In previewing this game I said it was important to get a quick start and put them under pressure – and we subsequently won the match in the opening 12 minutes.

The way we moved the ball, pressed them, didn’t allow them to take the ball out of defence, it was a really good high-tempo display.

I don’t think we played really great football consistently over the match, but there were plenty of peaks and we deservedly won.

And three wins in a row, of course.

Wycombe will be very different next weekend. Dear old Gareth Ainsworth with his time wasting, all that goes out the window if they concede an early goal.

I would actually gamble for the first 10 minutes to get that goal and change the contest.

Sides can come here with a game plan they have worked on all week and an early goal changes all that, just as we did on Saturday.

With the quality of balls our midfield put through, I don’t think anyone else can come close to us.

Who was your man of the match?

Gareth Evans was in a position he was not used to and a first league game back following injury – and was superb.

His energy levels were fantastic, he runs all day and is a very underrated player.

I wouldn’t necessarily play him at right-back away from home when the team will come under more pressure, but at Fratton Park we can use his attacking talents.

With the transfer window shut we now cannot loan in any right-backs, so the question is do we keep Evans there while Adam Buxton and Drew Talbot out injured.

I’d keep him there.

What did you make of Curtis Main?

I afterwards heard Paul Cook on the radio about how Main’s performance showed exactly why he brought him to the club.

Well I didn’t see it, Michael Smith held the ball up better and won more headers when he appeared as a substitute, but it’s a game of opinions.

Managers see players week in, week out in training and come to conclusions based on that.

Gaffer Pompey ratings:
David Forde 6

Gareth Evans 9

Tom Davies 8

Christian Burgess 7

Enda Stevens 7

Michael Doyle 7

Danny Rose 7

Carl Baker 5

Gary Roberts 6

Milan Lalkovic 7

Curtis Main 5