Gaffer: Burton is Portsmouth’s toughest remaining fixture in promotion race – not Sunderland

Gaffer for a Day, Paul Fletcher, aged 23 from Cosham, delivers his verdict on Pompey’s 3-2 success at Wycombe.

Sunday, 7th April 2019, 1:20 pm
Updated Sunday, 7th April 2019, 1:27 pm
Nathan Thompson and Lee Brown congratulate each other after holding out for a 3-2 success at Wycombe. Picture: Carl Thomas

Tough choice for man of the match then?

Usually there is just one stand out, but it has been hard to separate Brett Pitman and Craig MacGillivray.

I’m going for MacGillivray, who won us the game. Some of his saves were unbelievable, absolutely unbelievable, with four or five cracking stops.

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Wycombe lumped balls into the box and he came out to take them. It was lump it, lump it, lump it.

Pitman was also fantastic, his work-rate was really impressive. The first goal was a quality finish and the second a lovely free-kick.

 

A nerve-wracking finale too!

It should have been comfortable at 3-1, but it’s the Pompey way to make it hard for ourselves.

The end of the match was horrible, we took off Pitman and dropped two yards, inviting so much pressure. We did exactly the same with Omar Bogle at Southend.

The whole of our end were nervous, especially when earlier every fan must have thought we had that game won.

You are always confident but it's Pompey, you never know what's going to happen. In the end we ground out the three points.

 

What impressed you about Pompey?

I liked how we went to Wycombe and showed our physicality, not many teams do that when visiting Adams Park.

The players dug deep and Ben Close and Tom Naylor were putting in a lot of challenges. Naylor doesn’t get enough praise because of questions over his passing, but his tackling is phenomenal.

Once we attack from the first minute then more often than not we can hurt teams.

If we take that mindset into the Rochdale game next weekend, we will absolutely hammer them.

 

So six games remaining then.

Sunderland were lucky to get a last-minute winner at Rochdale and have fixture congestion coming up.

While following Barnsley’s defeat at Burton, a really tough place to go, I can see them going on a stumble and dropping points.

But I’m trying not to keep my eyes on those two, I want to concentrate on Pompey. Whatever we have to do, we have to do.

I don’t even think our trip to the Stadium of Light is our toughest fixture – for me that is away at Burton.

 

Craig MacGillivray 9

NathanThompson 7

Christian Burgess 7

Matt Clarke 7

Lee Brown 7

Tom Naylor 7

Ben Close 7

Jamal Lowe 7

Brett Pitman 9

Gareth Evans 7

Oli Hawkins 7