Pompey boss calls for time-wasting clamp down

They were time-wasting antics which drained the game and prompted six minutes to be added-on.

Now Andy Awford has called on match officials to clamp down on the approach taken by sides like Wycombe.

Andy Awford. Picture: Ashley Zee

Andy Awford. Picture: Ashley Zee

Johnny Ertl’s 70th minute volley cancelled out Sam Wood’s opener in Saturday’s entertaining 1-1 draw.

Yet the Fratton faithful were left frustrated by the Chairboys, who used a variety of methods to kill time over the fixture’s duration.

At one point Paul Hayes was yellow carded having delayed his substitution to put the captain’s armband on a team-mate.

It was also infuriating for Awford and his team, as they strived to make it successive Fratton Park wins.

As it was, the sides had to settle for a draw, in truth a fair outcome on the afternoon.

Wycombe, however, played out eight minutes of time added on at Plymouth in the week.

And Awford has called for the issue to be addressed by those officiating football.

He said: ‘It’s up to Wycombe, I can’t control what they do, all I ask is the referee and the fourth official get that right and I don’t think they did (on Saturday).

‘That’s what teams do, when they come here they have to slow the game day, we saw Newport do it and now Wycombe do it.

‘Teams will do that, they will want to waste as much time as possible to kill the game dead to make the crowd flat because they know what it is going to be like here – and they did a very good job on us.

‘We cannot stop that, that is down to the referee to handle that.

‘I think there should have been at least 10 minutes of injury time personally considering the match stoppages, the amount of substitutions and the amount of injuries and the goals.

‘When you add them up it seemed to me that six was a bit skinny.

‘Right from minute one there was a bit of slowness from them, but I am not going to criticise Wycombe for that, that is professional and what teams do.

‘It is down to the referee and the fourth official to handle that and make sure they either get cards out early doors and make sure they speed them up or add a lot, lot more time on.’

The draw against Gareth Ainsworth’s side ensures the Blues have taken four points from their last two matches – both held at Fratton Park.

They now travel to consecutive away games in the form of Hartlepool and then York.

Crucially, the past week has seen the Blues bounce back from three straight league defeats.

And Awford has been pleased to the response since a 2-0 loss at Southend.

He added: ‘Obviously you want to win as many games as you can, that goes without saying, on the back of two away defeats we wanted to try to take maximum points from two home matches.

‘But we took a lot of positives out of Tuesday night and then on Saturday getting a point having been behind.

‘It has been a good week, we’ve had four points out of six since the Southend game so we are pleased with that and now we move onto Hartlepool.’