Pompey star embarrassed by cup display

Liam Lawrence
Liam Lawrence
Conor Chaplin and Brett Pitman. Picture: Shaun Boggust

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Liam Lawrence slammed ‘rubbish’ Pompey after their embarrassing Carling Cup exit.

The Blues were humbled by League Two outfit Barnet as they crashed out of the competition last night.

A 1-0 loss at Fratton Park saw Steve Cotterill’s side go down to a side who saved their Football League lives on the final day of last season.

The players stayed locked in the dressing room for an hour after the final whistle as an inquest took place.

Furious Lawrence made his feelings known as the captain told his team-mates they performed like a ‘League Two side’.

He said: ‘The first 10 minutes we did okay and had little pockets of play.

‘Then we went totally off the boil and looked average at best.

‘Then they score a goal where we don’t pick up. It was embarrassing.

‘After that we looked like an average League Two side. Average at best. We should have been up for this and raring to go. I know I was.

‘We said in the dressing room before – and in the huddle – we had to treat it as big league game, a local derby. We had to be up for this.

‘You have to treat games like this with respect. Otherwise look at what happens.

‘Loads of teams have been beaten because they probably had the same mentality as us.

‘We think we can just turn up and beat sides. We can’t.

‘We didn’t pick up second balls, we didn’t keep the ball and we didn’t chase it.

‘It was rubbish. That’s what we were. Rubbish.’

Last night’s defeat meant it was the first time Pompey have crashed out of the Carling Cup at the first-round stage for 10 years.

Lawrence lifted the lid on the talks that took place as players and staff got to the bottom of the reasons for their performance.

He explained a number of players spoke up along with the club’s staff as they carried out the post-mortem.

Lawrence said: ‘We’ve had a long discussion and there have been a few things said in the dressing room afterwards.

‘We all said things. I said things, other players stood up and so did the manager and Stuart Gray.

‘It doesn’t matter about the size of the squad because the 11 out there should beat most Championship sides.

‘We should beat Barnet nine times out of 10.

‘That should have happened last night.

‘I’m really disappointed for us, the manager and the fans because it looks bad on us.’