Boss: Reality check for Pompey

Pompey boss Guy Whittingham. Picture: Joe Pepler
Pompey boss Guy Whittingham. Picture: Joe Pepler

Guy Whittingham said Pompey are facing up to the harsh reality of League Two but insisted: It will turn.

The Blues suffered a third loss in four matches on home turf this term when they went down to an impressive Fleetwood Town side 1-0 on Saturday.

An unfortunate Sonny Bradley own goal condemned Pompey to defeat in a game where they were some way short of their best – especially going forward as they struggled to carve out any real clear chances.

But their three Fratton Park losses have now come against sides who are in the top four in the League Two standings.

Whittingham feels that is the main reason for their poor home form.

And he has one eye on a run of forthcoming fixtures to rectify a disappointing home record.

He said: ‘It’s not the case we are going to walk League Two.

‘Fleetwood are a good side, so were Oxford and so were Chesterfield and that’s why they are up the top.

‘We knew they would be difficult games. In the other games, we went down to 10 men in two of them.

‘These games have come early and maybe we haven’t had the players here long enough.

‘No games are easy. But if we apply ourselves properly, there is a run of a few winnable games coming up over the next few weeks.

‘We have got some good home games coming up and having played three of the top four here, we know where we are.’

The Blues boss admitted his side had not been able to hit top gear against a well-drilled Fleetwood outfit.

He said: ‘I think this is the first time we haven’t fired on all cylinders at home.

‘We haven’t played as well as we have in the past.

‘It was a tough game and I felt we did okay without anybody really inspiring the rest of the team.

‘Sometimes it has been individuals who have done that and sometimes it has been the passage of passing but that wasn’t quite there.

‘It didn’t quite happen and you can’t always get it.

‘I felt we have had that in the majority of our games so far but when you haven’t got that, you’ve got to rely on being defensively solid.’

While Whittingham was pleased with the defensive display, he was left to rue the unfortunate ricochet that cost Pompey the game.

He said: ‘We were pretty solid at the back.

‘John Sullivan made a great save and unfortunately, it came back off Sonny Bradley and trickled in.

‘I’m not sure we deserved to lose it. We said 0-0 would not be a bad result because we fully expect them to be up the top of the table at the end of the season.

‘And I think the back four have done pretty well.

‘It was a fluke goal that has cost us the game.’