Evans always confident goals would come for Portsmouth against Oxford United

Gareth Evans was always confident the goals would come against Oxford United '“ despite his penalty miss.

Sunday, 19th August 2018, 6:24 pm
Updated Sunday, 19th August 2018, 6:30 pm

The stand-in skipper had an opportunity to break the deadlock in the 24th minute from the 12-yard spot, after Oli Hawkins had been fouled by Jamie Hanson.

However, Evans saw his effort saved by U's keeper Jonathan Mitchell and the two sides went into half-time at a goalless stalemate.

Yet the former Fleetwood Town midfielder and boss Kenny Jackett were bullish they'd maked a breakthrough in the second period.

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It was Evans who opened the scoring, rectifying his earlier error by rifling home a left-foot shot just three minutes after the restart.

Pompey then turned the screw , with a Jamal Lowe double and a Rob Dickie own goal giving the hosts a 4-1 victory.

And Evans was impressed by the Blues' display.

He said: '˜That keeper has made a good save and it's just one of those things. The gaffer asked before the game who wants to take penalties and I was quite keen on taking them.

'˜I've taken them for the club before and with Brett (Pitman) not being on the pitch I stood in for him.

'˜If he's still not on the pitch I'll still take them.

'˜I was gutted (to miss) but I always knew we were playing well and needed to keep our heads up and the goals were going to come. When you miss a penalty, you hope it's not going to matter too much and thankfully that turned out to be the case.

'˜Oxford have got some good players and a manger who knows what he is doing at this level '“ I'm sure he will get it right. To outclass them and out-muscle them in the way we did was really pleasing.

'˜We had some really good chances in the first half and were disappointed not to have gone ahead.

'˜But the gaffer told us to keep doing the right things, keep up the habits and the goals would come.

'I was pleased because I wanted to cancel out the penalty miss '“ I can only apologise for that!

'You've got to try to keep your head up and thankfully it didn't matter in the end.'