Pompey skipper: It’s time to unite

Pompey skipper Aaron Mokoena
Pompey skipper Aaron Mokoena
Kenny Jackett. Picture: Joe Pepler

Jackett not worried by Pompey’s defensive lapses

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Aaron Mokoena delivered a Fratton rallying cry and insisted: We must all stick together.

Sections of Pompey fans are planning a demonstration aimed at joint-owners Balram Chainrai and Levi Kushnir ahead of Saturday’s visit of Derby.

The unrest has been stoked up by the absence of any permanent signings during the transfer window.

It’s a situation with which the Blues’ skipper empathises.

He, along with several of his team-mates, have frequently been outspoken critics over the size of Steve Cotterill’s threadbare squad.

Yet, ultimately, their pleas were ignored and there were no new arrivals during the transfer window, much to the players and supporters’ disappointment.

Now the transfer window has closed and a must-win clash with Derby is looming.

And Mokoena has called on playing staff and fans to unite and fight side-by-side to ensure the club has a bright future.

He said: ‘In the dressing room the boys are together.

‘We made it clear against QPR we have got a great spirit out there.

‘We’ve got character, the dressing room is incredible and we need the fans to do it with us.

‘I know the frustration is there. We are just trying to avoid this frustration getting into the dressing room.

‘The energy we need to wa-ste should be on the pitch – that is where it matters most for us.

‘That is our 110-per-cent focus.

‘To be fair, if we tend to waste that energy off the field it wouldn’t do us any good.

‘We need the fans involved.

‘Their frustration rings a bell to us every time.

‘We want to be here, that’s why we are here.

‘We just need them involved with us.

‘Yes, more players can help but this is what we have and we have got to deal with it.

‘We showed against QPR we have what it takes and we’ve got to keep digging harder, everyone together, that is how it should be.’

SOS Pompey have organised a Frogmore Road demonstration at 2pm on Saturday.

Meanwhile, the Pompey Supporters’ Trust have also come out and criticised the owners and the unsuccessful transfer policy.

Amid it all, Cotterill’s side will be taking on Derby, who have endured a slump of late.

And, focusing on that match, Mokoena believes fans should be encouraged by the midweek display in the 2-0 defeat at QPR.

He added: ‘Obviously, it’s worrying to be four points away from relegation but that’s not what we are thinking.

‘I am not worried about difference in points from the bottom.

‘I am definitely sure that if we perform the way we did against QPR on Saturday we will definitely come out with something.

‘It’s still so tight for us, it’s about winning as much as possible.

‘With the small squad we have, that’s how we’ve got to approach it.’