Pompey v Yeovil: Gaffer For A Day

Gary Roberts. Picture: Joe Pepler
Gary Roberts. Picture: Joe Pepler
Stuart O'Keefe battles Osman Sow for the ball. Picture: Joe Pepler

O’Keefe: Pompey have finally clicked

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Stamshaw’s Alex Read, 26, looks ahead to the visit of Yeovil Town to Fratton Park.

This is going to be an interesting one in that it is the first match this season we need to bounce back from a defeat.

We expected to lose at Exeter City in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy because of the team selection, while Reading in the Capital One Cup was also anticipated.

Now we have lost to Exeter on Tuesday – our first in the league – and it is about how we respond positively to that.

Yeovil Town are visiting and if you are going to get promoted you need to beat teams like that in the bottom half of the table on home turf.

The midweek defeat might almost be a blessing in disguise, having got that first one out of the way.

At the end of the game you saw how frustrated Gary Roberts was with his flicks and passes, the final ball was not quite coming off, crosses were going over the keeper’s head.

It was disappointing – and now we need to bounce back and start over again.

Looking at Yeovil, Ryan Bird will be leading their attack and I liked him when he was here but we have more than enough to handle him.

As for our side, I would make three changes to the team which suffered that 2-1 loss to the Grecians.

That would be Roberts, Michael Doyle and Adam Webster coming in for Conor Chaplin, Danny Hollands and Matt Clarke.

Webster has done quite well in a few cameos and deserves his chance with Clarke looking a bit shaky in the last two matches.

We need to keep the players on their toes.

Doyle is needed because he tends to control the pace of the game from midfield and replacing Hollands is pretty straightforward.

Finally, Chaplin is not quite the finished article, while Roberts is too good to leave on the bench.