We saw best and worst of Pompey

Enda Stevens netted as Pompey battled for victory at Newport. Picture: Joe Pepler
Enda Stevens netted as Pompey battled for victory at Newport. Picture: Joe Pepler
Stuart O'Keefe. Picture: Joe Pepler

Pompey midfielder will relish facing former club

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Gaffer for a day Dean Johns, 42, from Fareham, gives his verdict on Pompey’s win at Newport County...

What can you say about that?

Firstly, where do I start summing up a match like that? I cannot remember the last time Pompey came back from 2-0 down to win a game.

We witnessed the best and worst of Pompey and even though came straight out of the blocks at the start of the second half, Newport were suddenly two goals up.

We cannot keep playing in 15-20 minute bursts, yet the players demonstrated they care and kept going to get that win.

And that pitch?

At one point in the first half, the ball bobbled up as high as Enda Stevens’ thigh, it was that bad.

Our approach was to get rid of the ball, no messing around with it, it was the right way to play on that Rodney Parade surface.

An important win for Paul Cook too.

It was a big result for Cook because he has his critics, although I am not one of them.

What really frustrates me with him was how at half-time he waited for the referee so he could chat to him and that happens whenever Pompey are losing, drawing or not playing well.

Get on with doing your job – which he did as his team went on to win.

He made the positive substitution by bringing on Conor Chaplin and was correct in his big decision to leave out so-called flair players Gary Roberts and Kyle Bennett.

And you could also see those players are still playing for him.

Who was your man of the match?

Noel Hunt galvanised the team, he led by example, and when we needed someone to grab the team by the scruff of the neck it was him.

Hunt’s performance also impressed me, he was good in the air and flicked a few on and played intelligently, far better than Michael Smith.

Smith was absolutely appalling in the warm-up even before the game!

My ratings

David Forde 6

Gareth Evans 7

Christian Burgess 6

Matt Clarke 7

Enda Stevens 7

Carl Baker 5

Michael Doyle 6

Danny Rose 6

Kal Naismith 8

Noel Hunt 8

Michael Smith 5