Pompey v Bristol Rovers: Gaffer for a day

Gaffer for a day Will Chitty previews the Pompey v Bristol Rovers game.

Saturday, 13th February 2016, 8:00 am
Updated Thursday, 7th June 2018, 6:39 pm
Gaffer for a day Will Chitty believes Conor Chaplin should start against Bristol Rovers Picture: Joe Pepler

I am not going to say this is a must-win, but this game will set the tone whether we are looking up the table or down.

There are a few easier matches coming up after this so we need to get a victory over one of our rivals to kick-start us.

Before you know it, we could be up to third.

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It is time to stop the rot and Paul Cook will be looking for a reaction after Saturday’s defeat to Orient.

No doubt we have the talent in the squad to do it, that is why the fans are getting frustrated.

These are not limited players whatsoever.

Orient was our worst performance of the season by a mile and reminded me of Newport County at home a few years ago. The opposition were disrupting the rhythm, three players gathered around the referee, and we got suckered in.

I’d like to see Gary Roberts, Gareth Evans, Conor Chaplin and Marc McNulty all start. We need goals at the minute and they are our four leading scorers.

As much as Kyle Bennett likes to be creative, we are seeing little end product from him at present, while it is not the right time for bedding in new players like Kieron Freeman and Michael Smith.

I would tell Chaplin, Roberts and McNulty to go and change positions when they see fit, they are talented enough to do that.

Get those four in the team and I guarantee they will get goals.

In defence, I would bring back Adam Webster for Christian Burgess.

Against Orient, Burgess was getting beaten to the ball by Jay Simpson. At one point Simpson wasn’t even flat out but beat him. For me, that raises questions of Burgess’ fitness or desire.

Still, my dog Barney has predicted a 2-1 Pompey win tomorrow – and I am going to agree with him.