Clotet hails Oxford’s response in Pompey win

Wes Thomas celebrates his opening goal. Picture: Joe Pepler
Wes Thomas celebrates his opening goal. Picture: Joe Pepler
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Pep Clotet commended Oxford United’s response in their win against Pompey after crashing out of the Carabao Cup last week.

The U’s continued their fine start to the League One campaign with a 3-0 victory against Kenny Jackett’s men at the Kassam Stadium.

Second-half strikes from West Thomas, Gino van Kessel and Josh Ruffels did the damage.

After an opening weekend victory at Oldham Athletic, Oxford suffered a midweek blip when they were dumped out of the Carabao Cup first round by League Two outfit Cheltenham Town in extra-time.

But Clotet’s men were back to their best against Pompey and moved to the summit of League One with the win.

The U’s boss lauded his side’s performance

He said: ‘I was looking for a big performance from us.

‘We had to have the right mentality because it was hard for us after a bad result against Cheltenham on Tuesday.

‘The fact the team was able to bounce back and get the three points is proof of the commitment of all of the players.

‘The fact we are now top of the league is irrelevant .’

Clotet is carrying on the good work Michael Appleton produced at the club after the ex-Pompey manager left to become Craig Shakespeare’s assistant at Leicester City.

The Spaniard has made 12 signings this summer, including Saturday’s debutant van Kessel.

The Blues also came up against £1m-rated Marvin Johnson, who is wanted by Hull City and caused the visitors problems.

Despite being chased by the Championship side, Clotet was pleased with his impact.

He told the Oxford Mail: ‘I’m very happy with his performance, his attitude and his commitment.

‘He worked hard for his team-mates and it was a tough game for him in the first half.

‘When the game opened up in the second half he gave a glimpse of what he can do.’