Skipper Gareth Evans rebuffs chance to blast defence and calls for collective blame-shouldering after Coventry nightmare

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Livid Gareth Evans refused to point the finger as Pompey shot themselves in the foot against nine-man Coventry.

The Blues skipper revealed some home truths had been spoken in his side’s dressing room after being stunned by a late leveller in last night’s demoralising 3-3 draw.

Gareth Evans celebrates his goal last night. Photo by Robin Jones.

Gareth Evans celebrates his goal last night. Photo by Robin Jones.

But Evans rebuffed the opportunity to criticise the back line in the face of Michael Rose’s 86th-minute leveller and errors at the back.

That came after both Fankaty Dabo and sub Gervane Kastaneer had been dismissed to stun the home fans on a bleak evening.

The boos rang out around the crowd of 18,748 on the final whistle on a night which will hit Pompey’s confidence hard.

Evans gave an honest account of events, but wasn’t prepared to criticise individuals.

He said: ‘I’m not going to stand here and point fingers. We’re a team and we’re all in together.

‘But you can see that things weren’t right and that last 15 minutes wasn’t good enough.

‘We have to learn from where it’s gone wrong.

‘We seem just as capable conceding as scoring, to be honest. We need to sort it.

‘We’re a team. Everyone’s part of a defensive unit.

‘We can put 11 men behind  the ball and defend so it’s not necessarily the defenders.

‘So we have to learn from this and make sure it doesn’t happen again.

Pompey’s defensive weakness was evident from the game’s outset, as Jordy Hiwula streaked through with the Coventry shirts to open the scoring from Matt Godden’s cross in the third minute.

Finishes from Ronan Curtis, John Marquis and Evans turned the game on its head, however, and put Jackett’s side in a winning position they should have seen over the line.

That was underlined as Dabo walked in the 59th minute before Godden’s penalty reduced the arrears with 15 minutes to go.

Then sub Kastaneer picked up two yellows in 11 minutes, but Coventry somehow found a leveller as Rose forced home a long throw which wasn’t dealt with.

Evans explained home truths were spoken but the tone was not one of fury but despondency.

He said: ‘There’s been a few words said, but what happens in the changing rooms stays there.

‘It’s more disappointment than anger, to be honest. The lads are really upset.

‘It has to be something we learn from and try to eradicate now so it doesn’t happen again.’