Will Rooney looks back on Saturday’s loss at Scunthorpe and assesses the main talking points.
HAWKINS MUST NOT
DWELL ON MISS
Oliver Hawkins will probably not get a better opportunity to open his Pompey scoring account than on Saturday.
The striker will be desperate to break his duck after completing a deadline-day move from Dagenham & Redbridge. And he will want to prove he can cut it in League One after firing on all cylinders in non-league.
Hawkins had a gilt-edged opportunity to get the Blues level on 30 minutes after Lee Novak’s early opener.
Jamal Lowe’s cross found the head of the 25-year-old, but he somehow nodded his effort wide of the target.
The big hitman will know he should have buried the chance and it would have been a pivotal turning point in the game.
His confidence may be dashed slightly, but Hawkins must come back stronger.
It’s crucial he puts that miss out of his mind when he gets another similar opportunity.
LOWE CONTINUES TO SHINE
One player who knows all about adapting to life in the Football League is Jamal Lowe.
The former Hampton & Richmond winger was playing in the sixth tier 12 months ago.
On Saturday, he was the Blues’ stand-out performer.
Pompey’s overall display lacked penetration – something Kenny Jackett has reiterated his side are missing at times this season.
But Lowe cannot fall into that category.
Blessed with power, pace and the ability to beat defenders, he came away from Glanford Park with his head held high.
Lowe produced a brilliant change of pace to leave Lewis Butroid for dead.
His cross to find Oliver Hawkins had everything a striker wants – pace, whip and the right height, while there was a shot late on from the wide man that forced a stop from Iron goalkeeper Matt Gilks.
The bubbly attacker’s confidence is sky high at the minute and he’s improving after every game.
POMPEY NEED TO BE A UNIT LIKE THE IRON
It was evident why Scunthorpe finished third in League One last season and why they’ve conceded just three league goals so far this term.
Every Iron man was well drilled, knew the areas they had to cover and their two banks of four made it difficult for the Blues to penetrate – especially after taking the lead.
In contrast, individual errors were made by Pompey.
They need to be eradicated quickly if they are to become a force in the division like Jackett believes they can.