Gaffer: Portsmouth were toothless – but Hawkins staked his claim

Gaffer for a Day Sam Pullen, aged 37, from High Wycombe, gives his thoughts on Pompey’s FA Cup replay loss at QPR...

By Will Rooney
Tuesday, 5th February 2019, 11:38 pm
Updated Thursday, 7th February 2019, 10:09 pm
Oli Hawkins. Picture: Joe Pepler
Oli Hawkins. Picture: Joe Pepler

That was a pretty disappointing performance from Pompey?

I thought it was a poor game overall. 

QPR weren't significantly better and both of their goals - as well as hitting the crossbar twice - came from set-plays.

I don't think there was masses between the teams.

QPR's touch was better in the wet conditions and they had more control on the ball and skill. 

We didn't have a big clue in the final third.

Oli Hawkins did really well but we didn't get the ball to him enough and in the final third we were really lacking in ideas.


Attacking-wise Pompey didn't threaten enough, did they?

They were toothless and seemed to be waiting for something to happen.

I thought Hawkins did really well and was my man of the match.

We tried to get the ball wide but he did a really good job of holding it up.

However, Louis Dennis and Adam May were too far away from him and he had no support. 

Hawkins was isolated and nothing came of it.

We need a proper No10 and with the competition coming in up front I think Hawkins has staked his place at Loftus Road.


What did you make of Kenny Jackett's team selection?

I don't think the team can support both Ben Close and Adam May.

They're not identical players but Tom Naylor was doing too much in the end.

I'd have definitely started Bryn Morris ahead of May.

And, in hindsight, Louis Dennis isn't ready to play a Championship team at all.

He was found out and we'll have to see if he makes the grade but was found out.

Maybe that is harsh because it was a poor team performance.


How do Pompey pick themselves up from this lull they're in?

QPR played most of their first team and, yes we lost, but weren't disgraced.

We didn't play very well but held our own for 70 minutes against a Championship team.

A lot of our players can cut it in the league above with a few additions. 


Sam’s Pompey ratings…

Craig MacGillivray 6

Anton Walkes 7

Christian Burgess 6

Matt Clarke 7

Lee Brown 7

Tom Naylor 7

Jamal Lowe 7

Ben Close 6

Adam May (Bryn Morris 6) 5

Louis Dennis (Gareth Evans 6) 5

Oli Hawkins 8