Gaffer: Season’s worst from Portsmouth

Matt Clarke cut a disconsolate figure after Blackpool defeat, but was Jamie Crook's man of the match. Picture: Joe Pepler
Matt Clarke cut a disconsolate figure after Blackpool defeat, but was Jamie Crook's man of the match. Picture: Joe Pepler
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Have your say

Gaffer for a Day, Jamie Crook, aged 35 from Gosport, delivers his verdict on Pompey’s 1-0 loss to Blackpool.

Your thoughts on that then.

That was the worst performance I have seen from us this season, it was pretty awful to watch.

The match was bizarre, nothing happened, we looked tired and put in a pretty terrible display. Although it wasn’t as bad as Blackpool at home last season.

There were some boos at the end and, although I didn’t get involved, the manner of defeat contributed to that reaction.

I was at Gillingham, but we saw out the last 15 minutes with 10-men, which should be considered. On Saturday we didn’t create anything, which was really disappointing.

Who stood out for you?

My ratings are pretty savage and there’s a good reason for that.

Matt Clarke was my man of the match, but there aren’t too many other candidates.

He was the only one trying to make things happen, attempting to get in behind, running towards the opposition, and creating some chances.

Clarke is always comfortable on the ball, a calming influence on the rest of the team and a cool head. I can’t imagine opposition teams expect to see a central defender charging forward with the ball!

What was your impression of Andy Cannon?

He added something when he came off the bench, at least he had a shot. It was miles off target, but he had one!

I like it when people try something, he looked skilful and showed some nice touches, a bright spot amid the darkness, and hopefully gets the chance in coming weeks.

We definitely missed Oli Hawkins and his flicks to bring wingers into the game.

The direct approach which we seem to be playing is not to Brett Pitman’s strengths, he is skilful with the ball at his feet, whereas Hawkins is a target man and not a poacher.

Pitman is not match-fit at present and has never been a fast player. Obviously we need a striker in this window, as well as midfield cover.

And life after Ben Thompson?

Even if we had Thompson against Blackpool, we wouldn’t have won, but it’s still a massive miss.

Clearly Gareth Evans in that holding role does not work, it’s clear we need to sort out some midfield options during the transfer window, maybe move Dion Donohue there.

I know we’ve just come off the back of four straight wins, but the league form is not great at the moment. It’s not a disaster, but isn’t brilliant and we need to break out of the blip.

We’ve had an amazing start to the season, we have to finish the job. I am pretty confident the play-offs have been nailed, but let’s not assume there’s an automatic promotion spot.

We are still top of the league, but there is an awfully long way to go until the end of the season.

Craig MacGillivray 6

Anton Walkes 4

Jack Whatmough 6

Matt Clarke 7

Dion Donohue 4

Tom Naylor 6

Gareth Evans 4

Jamal Lowe 4

Andre Green 3

Ronan Curtis 4

Brett Pitman 3