Pompey striker pledges no more slip-ups

Nicke Kabamba

Nicke Kabamba

Former Pompey boss Frank Burrows

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It should have been the glorious moment Nicke Kabamba crowned his maiden Pompey start with a goal in front of the Fratton End.

Instead, he was left thumping the ground in frustration after an untimely slip.

Still, the striker has opted for a change of studs to maintain his equilibrium and prevent an unfortunate repeat at Mansfield tomorrow.

Kabamba was in Paul Cook’s side against Cambridge United last weekend.

On 47 minutes he homed in on goal after Carl Baker’s right-foot shot had been parried by the keeper.

With an open net beckoning, Kabamba became the latest victim of Fratton Park’s often slippery playing surface.

His tumble to floor ensured he couldn’t connect with the loose ball. No wonder he was frustrated.

The 23-year-old said: ‘There was a goal there, if I didn’t slip I would have put it in for my first for the club.

‘I was very frustrated. You want to get your maiden goal as soon as possible, it can open so many doors for yourself, so much confidence comes in, and that’s what you need as a striker.

‘I punched the floor. That moment would have been perfect, I stuck to the book and followed in a team-mate’s shot, I did everything right.

‘Then I slipped.

‘The gaffer likes us to move the ball quickly, so waters the pitch before the game to help the ball zip across and you can pass it.

‘Now I have new studs on my boots, so hopefully I won’t be slipping any more.

‘The studs at the back were previously longer than the ones on the front. Now I’ve got them long on both to give me more grip.’

Having arrived from Hampton & Richmond in January, Kabamba is still adjusting to life at Pompey.

Particularly in Cook’s favoured 4-2-3-1 system.

He added: ‘I’m learning the striker role the gaffer wants me to perform in, stretching the play like Eoin (Doyle) did when here.

‘Hopefully the next day I get a goalscoring opportunity it will go in.’

– NEIL ALLEN

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