Kenny Jackett: No blame in Portsmouth’s decisive off-side goal against Peterborough
It was the key moment in a Pompey defeat decisive in ending automatic promotion hopes – but Kenny Jackett refused to point the finger of blame.
The scoreline was 2-2 with 17 minutes remaining when Brett Pitman broke down the right with just keeper Aaron Chapman to beat.
However, the skipper elected to square a pass for the offside Viv Solomon-Otabor to score a goal rightly disallowed.
It was a misjudgement between the pair that the Blues were left to rue, with Ivan Toney netting the Posh’s winner just two minutes later.
As a consequence of that defeat and Sunderland’s loss at Fleetwood, high-flying Luton and Barnsley have now been promoted into the Championship automatically.
The culprit responsible for that vital oversight between Pitman and Solomon-Otabor will long be debated.
Jackett, however, declined to single either for criticism.
The Blues boss said: ‘Maybe if Brett goes and slots it – or Viv is running and supports from behind.
‘I don’t know whether he (Solomon-Otabor) put himself in that position or if he waited behind, I haven’t seen it again.
‘Although I did think he was offside, as soon as Brett played it he looked offside, I really can’t argue with the decision.
‘It was those two options to be fair. For all of us on the sidelines, it’s pretty easy to criticise, it's different when you are on there doing it.
‘They scored two minutes later, Toney put it into the corner and gave the goalkeeper no chance.’
Despite obvious disappointment around Fratton Park at the final whistle, Pompey’s players were clapped off the pitch.
And it was a gesture appreciated by Jackett.
He added: ‘The fans again were fantastic and generated a great atmosphere, while the players’ amount of effort and attitude was fantastic.
‘We really did appreciate the applause at the end because there are big games ahead.
‘We’re all very disappointed, you can understand why the lads sat down on the pitch at the final whistle, they did put a lot of effort in.
‘But I found with all of the effort, all of the attitude, we lacked control, barring Ben Close.’