Gaffer: Pompey must stop giving themselves mountain to climb

Pompey were beaten at Southend. Picture: Joe Pepler
Pompey were beaten at Southend. Picture: Joe Pepler
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Pompey fan Ryan Stillwell, 25, from Stubbington, gives his verdict after the 3-1 defeat at Southend...

The poor run of form continues for Pompey

We have to stop making it so hard for ourselves to win games.

This is the fourth game in a row where we’ve conceded in the opening 15 minutes.

Overall, you have to be impressed where we are in the table, but it is troublesome we can’t seem to prepare for a game outside PO4.

Pompey can’t keep going 1-0 and 2-0 down that early.

We were very good second half until Nathan Thompson’s red card and should have equalised with a few of our chances.

But we have to stop giving ourselves a mountain to climb to win games.

In away losses at Scunthorpe, Northampton and Doncaster there have been periods where we’ve been on top but we’ve also been 2-0 down early on, so it’s nigh on impossible really.

Pompey haven’t kept a clean sheet since December 16. Why do you think that is?

If you look at last season, look at the areas of the pitch we were winning the ball back.

It wasn’t through goal-kicks or David Forde making a string of great saves like Luke McGee does often.

Instead, we were winning the ball back 30-40 yards from goal because we had such a imposing midfield.

Last season, we also focused highly on possession and you can’t concede when you have the ball.

Now, however, hoofing the ball is a gamble game. If you keep giving the ball away and don’t have the strongest midfield, you’re going to have more pressure on your own goal.

Who was your man of the match?

I’d have to give it to Jamal Lowe – he was our most dynamic player.

I said in my preview he’s wasted on the left and his best move is getting to the byline and cutting it back on the opposite wing.

It just so happened that’s how we got our goal, with Lowe pinging a great ball to the back post.

I don’t want to bang the drum about him having to play on the right because I like Gareth Evans, but Lowe delivered on the right.

Did Nathan Thompson deserve a red card?

From what I saw, it didn’t look a red at first, but a weird challenge.

The thing that gets me is Thompson goes in weirdly but the ball pops up between himself and Ben Coker and they both turn to try to get the loose ball – the Southend player then goes down afterwards.

It’s not a good challenge, I can see why it was given but the referee was conned a bit.