Defender warns of danger to Portsmouth’s hopes of promotion next season
Lee Brown warned Pompey can ill afford a hangover from Pompey’s end-of-season disappointment.
And the Blues defender told his team-mates they have to quickly put their play-off heartache to bed after defeat to Sunderland last week.
The dust is beginning to settle from the Fratton Park exit to Jack Ross’ side last Thursday, as the club face up to the prospect of another season in League One.
The pain of coming up short was evident among both fans, players and staff in the wake of the crucial loss.
But Brown, who today spoke of his anticipation at seeing the ambition of Pompey’s owners this summer, pointed out lingering on a huge missed opportunity would be detrimental to the club moving forward.
He said: ‘The boys have put in a lot of effort over 10 months, so it’s heartbreaking. But we’ve got to get over this quickly now.
‘To a man, we’ve had a good season.
‘The play-offs are a lottery and we had two tight games with Sunderland.
‘We had a couple of decent chances to score and, on a different night we win 2-0.
‘It’s difficult to take, but we have to bounce back - and I think we’ll bounce back next season.
‘Everyone’s hurting. People behind the scenes put in a lot of effort.
‘There’s been a lot of effort put in across the course of the season.
‘But you’ve got to be strong in this game, deal with disappointment and go again.
‘We won the Checkatrade Trophy, had a good FA Cup run and reached the play-offs.
‘We are disappointed but we’ve got to go again.
‘We can’t have an overspill from this into next season.
‘I’m sure the gaffer is already looking towards next season on the recruitment side of things.
‘We’ve got to look forward and stick together now.’
Brown explained the coming weeks now have to be about recuperation for Pompey after a gruelling 62-game season.
That is with a view to coming back at the end of June and getting stuck into the pre-season campaign as the team aim to go one better next term.
Brown said: ‘We have to go away, recharge the batteries and come back stronger.
‘Play-offs are played on a knife edge and on a different night it could’ve gone for us.
‘It’s time to refresh, recharge and start building yourself back up for next season.
‘It’s time to wind down, reflect on where it went well and went wrong.
‘Then we need to go again.’