Pompey 0 Crewe 1: Gaffer For A Day

Ian Limb, 48, from Waterlooville, gives his verdict on Pompey's dismal home defeat to Crewe.

Sunday, 5th March 2017, 5:05 pm
Updated Friday, 24th March 2017, 10:45 am
Matt Clarke in action against Crewe. Picture: Joe Pepler

How bad was that?

It was a little bit reminiscent of some goalless draws last season where we started off okay and got worse and worse.

Crewe were appalling in the first half, they didn’t want to play, they were there for the taking.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

But I cannot put my finger on why we were awful.

We looked tired and I find it staggering how we couldn’t get going in a match of such importance.

Leggy, one-paced and deserved to lose – but I never saw it coming in a million years.

Do you now have doubts about promotion?

I do worry about the players’ bottle for it.

The game was there for them to take by the scruff of the neck, yet they seemed fragile and lightweight.

You have to question whether they have the mentality to deliver.

That was our moment and, for whatever reason, they couldn’t do it. You have to look at their mental strength to succeed.

Hopefully there can be a reaction tomorrow but it needs to be turned around quickly.

Does any player deserve credit?

At least Matt Clarke kept playing until the end and didn’t make any mistakes.

That was the worst I have seen from Christian Burgess – and I am a huge fan of his. I believe he can play well above this level.

I know the pitch wasn’t great but too many of his passes went wrong, the amount of times he tried to play it to Gareth Evans and it went for a throw-in.

As for Eoin Doyle, I was really impressed during his first few games but on Saturday he didn’t want to move.

I acknowledge he didn’t get any service but he should be pulling people around to create space for others.

A lot of fans were understandably angry with that display.

I remember against Sunderland in the Great Escape and going behind on 70 minutes, everyone got behind the team and we won.

On Saturday, Crewe scored and there were people around me who went.

There was still time to get back into it, 13 minutes plus stoppage-time, but some fans gave up.