Gaffer: As a reverend I'm meant to see the best in everything - but sadly not in Portsmouth's display against Wycombe

Gaffer For A Day, Rev Hugo Deadman, aged 54, from Milton, gives his opinion on Pompey’s goalless draw with Wycombe...

Sunday, 20th March 2022, 5:00 pm
Gavin Bazunu was Gaffer For A Day Hugo Deadman's choice as Pompey man of the match against Wycombe. Picture: Joe Pepler
Gavin Bazunu was Gaffer For A Day Hugo Deadman's choice as Pompey man of the match against Wycombe. Picture: Joe Pepler

First of all, we don’t get many reverends doing this job!

I’ve been at St James’ in Milton for nearly three years and a life-long Pompey fan.

The church has close links with the football club, players would get baptised here around the First World War, it’s in the records.

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We also have strong links with the community. We are attached to the Choir Church Project, which has Christmas singalongs at Fratton Park through lay minister Ally Ross.

Back in July, the same day as the friendly with Peterborough, we held a memorial service for a big Blues fan and Pompey scored at that moment, with the sound from Fratton Park echoing around the church. It was fantastic.

What are your thoughts about Pompey’s performance?

My job is to see the best in everything, but it was quite hard to do that on Saturday!

We weren’t great and looked pretty tired. Defensively we stood up pretty well, but there was no real inventiveness to break Wycombe down.

We were lucky to get zero quite frankly and did well to get a point. Wycombe would have been furious not to win it, even if their final ball was dreadful.

As for that George Hirst incident, it was right in front of me sat in the South Stand. I couldn’t believe it, it was a rugby tackle. If anything, Hirst was a victim of his own honesty by not going down.

What do you think of Tyler Walker?

Walker reminds me of Michael Smith, he looks like a beaten man every time he takes to the pitch. He almost looked bewildered on Saturday.

The game was going on around him and I felt really sorry for the lad. His career record is impressive, but he doesn’t look like he’s going to score here.

The comparison between him and Hirst is quite startling, Hirst did really well in the physical battle with Wycombe’s centre-halves.

Although Walker gets attacked on Twitter, the fans at games have not really gone for him, like they’ve done with Smith and others in the past.

Who was your man of the match?

We would have lost 3-0 without Gavin Bazunu, he was the difference.

He’s going to be in the Champions League in a couple of years, the lad is incredibly mature for the age of 20. I’ve been so impressed with him.

Now and again he drops a ricket, which is to be expected at his age, but when Wycombe had all those corners in the first half, I never had any doubt he would collect them every time.

I feel a bit sorry for Sean Raggett, he has been magnificent, but Bazunu gets my vote for player of the year.

Gavin Bazunu – 9

Hayden Carter – 7

Sean Raggett – 8

Clark Robertson – 6

Mahlon Romeo – 6

Connor Ogilvie – 7

Louis Thompson – 6

Ryan Tunnicliffe – 6

Marcus Harness – 7

Tyler Walker – 4

George Hirst – 6

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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