Cotterill backs Mullins vote

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Jamal Lowe helped fire Pompey to success at Fleetwood. Picture: Mark Robinson

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Steve Cotterill has backed the decision to crown Hayden Mullins as Pompey’s player of the season.

Readers of The News and Sports Mail voted for the midfielder to receive the accolade in recognition of his consistent performances throughout the campaign.

He edged it ahead of Joel Ward in a fiercely fought battle between the two.

As a result, Mullins was presented with the trophy on the Fratton Park pitch before Monday’s fixture with Norwich.

It was a fans’ decision agreed with by Cotterill.

The Blues boss himself had previously publicly admitted Mullins would be his choice.

And he was delighted to see the outcome.

He said: ‘I think Hayden has been worthy of it.

‘If you are talking about staying power and all of that he has lasted the test of time in every game this season.

‘He will be fit for our last game of the season at Scunthorpe on Saturday.

‘Without a ridiculous sending off the other week which he incurred, he would have had 46 league games under his belt.

‘His consistency has been fantastic and that is why he nicks it over Jamie (Ashdown) for me.

‘Hayden has had his odd quiet game but predominantly he has been there all season.

‘And it was also nice for Joel to finish second.’

Elsewhere on the trophy front, Ashdown and Ward collected four apiece.

Pompey’s keeper was recognised by the Isle of Wight Supporters’ Club, the Northern Blues, the South West Supporters’ Club and the USA Supporters’ Club.

Ward earned silverware from the London Supporters’ Club, Clan Pompey, Chichester Supporters’ Club and Pompey Supporters’ Club central branch.

Meanwhile, Ricardo Rocha was the choice of the South Wales Supporters’ Club.

Mullins takes The News trophy from last year’s winner Jamie O’Hara.

He follows in the footsteps of the likes of Glen Johnson, David James, Gary O’Neil, Arjan De Zeeuw and Scott Hiley in recent times.

The 32-year-old is now poised to make a staggering 49th appearance of the season at Scunthorpe in the final match of the campaign.