Pompey’s Tubbs to the rescue for Andy
RELIEVED Andy Awford praised the impact of Matt Tubbs after the striker’s first goal for his new club earned Portsmouth a rare victory.
Tubbs’ close-range header on the hour mark sealed a first win in ten games for Pompey.
After three blanks in three games since moving from Bournemouth, Tubbs eased the pressure on Awford, settling a game that looked set to be goalless.
“Matt has had chances in the three games he’s played previously, but doesn’t let anything effect him,’’ reflected Awford.
“He’s a good striker and good strikers are like that. They keep at it. And he was in the right place at the right time to be there.
“He got across the near post ahead of his man to head in.’’
After an encouraging point at Wycombe the previous week, a home game against the division’s bottom team was just what was needed for Pompey.
“It was all about the win – a very, solid professional performance,’’ added Awford.
“We started well, an early chance and kept the pressure on.We probably should have been ahead after 15-20 minutes, but the key for me was patience.
“That was the message at half-time, take that extra touch, extra pass and stick with it.
“We were actually better last week at Wycombe than we were here, but credit to everyone for sticking with it.’’
Amid a busy start from the home side, a Jed Wallace free-kick landed at the feet of defender Joe Devera and he prodded wide after only 38 seconds.
Pompey kept up the pressure, but some frantic defending from Pools kept them out, although keeper Scott Flinders was only troubled once, by a long-range Wallace freekick.
At the other end, Paul Jones had his quietest game of the season, never having his hands warmed all afternoon.
The winning goal came when Ryan Taylor’s leftsided cross landed towards the near post and Tubbs got there first to head in. From then on, it was routine for Pompey leaving Pools nine points short at the bottom of the table.
“It’s frustrating with the goal we conceded in a scrappy game with few chances for either side,’’ said Pools’ boss Ronnie Moore.
“We weren’t as good as we have been of late.
“We allowed the ball to come into the box and Tubbs, the smallest on the pitch, gets across his man to head in.
“We have been decent defensively of late.We blocked well and got bodies in the way, but Scott Flinders hasn’t had saves to make.”
STAR MAN DANNY HOLLAN