Goal hero Ward left frustrated

Reading were linked with Matt Clarke during the week

No pressure to sell prized assests - Pompey fans have their say

Joel Ward toasted the goal of his life – then revealed his frustration at failing to get three points to accompany it.

The 21-year-old crashed home a spectacular opener against Leeds on Saturday.

He struck a first-time right-foot shot past Kasper Schmeichel from fully 20-yards after Liam Lawrence had teed him up.

It was a goal worthy of winning any contest, except the match ended in a 2-2 draw.

For Ward, it was the second goal of a blossoming Pompey career which continues to earn the plaudits.

He put in another eye-catching display from the centre of midfield against Simon Grayson's side at Fratton Park.

But he remained disappointed he couldn't help steer the Blues to a first home win since October 30 against Nottingham Forest.

He said: 'I think that's the best goal of my career so far – then again I haven't scored many.

'I wasn't sure whether Liam was going to pass to me or not, thankfully he did.

'The first thing that came into my head was to have a go.

'There was no-one around me so I thought I would just pull the trigger since the ball rolled into me.

'I just kept my eye on the ball and struck through it.

'It was just gutting we didn't get the win, though.

'They didn't score the best of goals and we should have done better with them.

'In that first half we could have got a few more goals.

'There were quite a few chances from corners and very early in the game we hit the crossbar.

'It's frustrating we didn't get a few more and should have really.

'We came out and conceded a sloppy goal after the interval but showed our character and came back from it again.

'It's just frustrating when it happens. Up there we showed great character to get a 3-3 draw and on Saturday they did well, but I think, overall, we probably should have got the win.

'It was one of those things and we will keep our heads up, go again and look forward to tomorrow against Burnley.'

Steve Cotterill's side have now conceded 16 goals in their past six matches.

They managed to get to the break against Leeds with a rare clean sheet after an outstanding opening 45 minutes.

But once again those defensive frailties materialised to restrict the hosts to just a point against the promotion chasers.

Ward added: 'In the first half we stuck to our tasks and did our jobs.

'When you battle and do your jobs it makes life easier for everyone else.

'We came together and played really well in that first half.

'I thought the lads at the back and me and Hayden (Mullins) in the middle were doing okay. We locked up and played some good football.

'But we conceded goals again and it is frustrating.

'Still, we have got to keep our heads up and keep pushing forward, doing as much as we can to stop it.'