Clarke hailed as Pompey press on

Matt Clarke was the stand-out performer in Pompey's 1-0 victory over Bury on Saturday.

Sunday, 17th December 2017, 4:52 pm
Updated Sunday, 17th December 2017, 5:00 pm
Pompey goal hero Matt Clarke. Picture: Joe Pepler

That’s the verdict of Jordan Caddle, 23, from Hilsea, who was the latest Blues fan to take the helm in our Gaffer For A Day feature.
Chief sports writer Neil Allen caught up with Caddle in the wake of the victory to pose a few key questions...
• Enjoy that? In the first half I looked at the clock and it said 38 minutes had passed – but nothing had really happened.

It was one of those weird games where you just had to get the result and go home.

The quality wasn’t very good at all but we won it.

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Sol Campbell and Svetoslav Todorov. Picture: Joe Pepler

Some people moan. I had a bit of a Facebook spat after the Plymouth game with somebody saying they had not been entertained for the money they paid.

Well, I go to see the best my club can do and would take scrappy 1-0 wins all season to ensure we are in with a shout or not in relegation trouble.

• What did you make of Bury? I don’t remember them going forward or even threatening Luke McGee.

They had only 176 fans present and seem to be a bit resigned to the position they find themselves. You would think there would be some fight in there as they battle to avoid relegation.

Sol Campbell and Svetoslav Todorov. Picture: Joe Pepler

Christian Burgess easily coped with Michael Smith, although there was a moment when our former striker appeared to have got pace from somewhere while chasing the ball!

• Who was your man of the match? Matt Clarke was superb, not just for the winning goal but he also was very good defensively, whether at centre-half or left-back.

Having seen a replay of the goal, he had managed to get himself unmarked, with six yards of space everywhere. There was no way he was missing.

• Enjoy seeing Svetoslav Todorov and Sol Campbell back at Fratton Park? I met Toddy before the match to get my copy of ‘Played Up Pompey Too’ signed, what a nice bloke. He also posed for a photo with my mum’s boyfriend. Toddy has to be one of the best finishers anyone has ever seen at Fratton Park.

As for Campbell, he was sort of vilified for his role in the club going down but seeing him back made good memories return.

I know we’ve had bad, bad moments but we still have our club, we are progressing and have to look at the good times.

I would rather have tasted FA Cup glory than still be in the Premier League like clubs such as Stoke and West Brom. Why would you support them?

There was a mixed reaction to Campbell coming on to the pitch at half-time but near me in the South lower no boos, just polite applause.
• Jordan’s ratings: Luke McGee 7; Nathan Thompson 8; Christian Burgess 8; Matt Clarke 9; Brandon Haunstrup 8; Danny Rose 8; Stuart O’Keefe (Ben Close 8) 6; Gareth Evans 8; Kyle Bennett 6; Jamal Lowe 7; Brett Pitman 6