Gaffer: When Portsmouth players click, we will storm this league

Gaffer for a Day, Tony Brooks, aged 46 from Fratton, gives his verdict on Pompey’s 1-1 draw at Blackpool.

Sunday, 1st September 2019, 4:00 pm
Updated Sunday, 1st September 2019, 8:34 pm
Gaffer for a Day, Tony Brooks, from Fratton, was impressed with the central-defensive partnership of Paul Downing and Tom Naylor. Picture: Paul Thompson/ProSportsImages

What are your thoughts on that result?

It was a deserved and well-earned draw, a very good point at a hard place to go against a Blackpool side which will finish in the top six.

I can't believe some are moaning, we just have to wait for the players to click and then will storm the league.

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We have players of the quality of John Marquis and Marcus Harness, they just have to click. While we have been unfortunate with injuries.

Blackpool are a club on the up under new ownership, to get a point up there is a good result.

What do you make of this new-look defence?

Tom Naylor and Paul Downing at centre-back works, they looked strong and composed at Blackpool, with an understanding.

Unfortunately there was one lapse from Downing, the only thing he did wrong all game was losing Armand Gnanduillet for their equaliser.

As for Burgess, he looked strong and composed at right-back. There was a crucial interception in the second half when they could have scored.

We are five matches into a 44-game season, it’s a marathon, not a sprint.

Who was your man of the match?

When Marcus Harness went off the game changed, he was our threat and always has a bit of spark in him.

Since he has come to the club he has proven himself to be an ideal replacement for Jamal Lowe – with a bit extra.

Harness has the pace to run at defenders, he’s more direct than Lowe, and has an all-round game which means he tracks back and looks to break.

Whatever we got him for, it’s a bargain!

What about substitute Gareth Evans being substituted?

I can see why Jackett wanted to make a change, Blackpool altered their team at half-time and it was having an impact.

However, it was harsh to take Evans off after 25 minutes.

Personally, I would have taken off Ben Close, moved Tom Naylor back into midfield, put Christian Burgess at centre-back and then Evans at right-back.

As it was, Ellis Harrison, as Evans’ replacement, didn’t do a lot, but he needs game time. Ideally against Crawley on Tuesday night.

Craig MacGillivray 7

Christian Burgess 8

Tom Naylor 8

Paul Downing 7

Brandon Haunstrup 6

Ben Close 6

Ross McCrorie 7

Marcus Harness 9

Andy Cannon 7

Ronan Curtis 7

John Marquis 8