RICARDO’S NOTTS TIE UP POMPEY
RICARDO MONIZ hailed Notts County’s best win so far this season and believes victory over Portsmouth could finally spark their promotion push.
The Magpies came from a goal down at Meadow Lane to secure victory over Paul Cook’s side, who had taken the lead through Caolan Lavery in the 19th minute.
But Graham Burke’s stunning volley made it 1-1 three minutes later, although Notts were indebted to goalkeeper Roy Carroll for tipping Adam Webster’s shot onto the post.
Notts finally sealed the win in the second half when Alan Sheehan’s free-kick from 60 yards crept in to give boss Moniz his first win over a top-ten side in League Two.
The Dutch coach said:“This win will do wonders for our confidence because we have beaten a very good team.
“I said before you can train and coach, and train and coach, but ultimately the players have to experience the success out where it matters.
“That’s the best way to learn and give yourselves belief and that’s what happened here.
“We did show naivety for the first goal but the good thing for us was that we scored quickly afterwards.
“We didn’t make the same mistakes of being so open to the counter attack in the second half.We kept our shape and we spoke at half-time about one moment being decisive for us and that proved to be true.
“It has given us belief that we can beat a big team even though we didn’t dominate like we usually do. But this a great win and the players and the football club deserve it. There is a great feeling in the dressing room and this could be a big moment in the season.”
This defeat ended Portsmouth’s own unbeaten run of five games and left them third in the table still handily placed to launch an assault on the automatic promotion positions.
Boss Cook remained philosophical afterwards saying he couldn’t fault his players’ effort as they controlled the game for large spells.
“I thought it was a terrific game of football,” Cook said.
“We played well and I never felt we were in any danger of losing it.
“Some of our combination play in the first half was very good. Adam McGurk and Gareth Evans linked up well and gave us a lot more penetration.
“Both of those players have had injuries and they need games, but we looked good.
“Sadly we gave a goal right away after scoring and then in the second half we took control of the game.
“They had Izale McLeod up front on his own and everyone else behind the ball, but unfortunately we couldn’t take advantage.
“In the end we weren’t good enough to win, so you have to give credit to Notts County for going on and doing so.
“Football is a game of fine margins. We will have to accept it and move on.”
GOLDEN GRAHAM: Notts County’s Graham Burke watches on as his volley flys in to level the score
MY BALL: Izale Mcleod and Christian Burgess tussle
STAR MAN MIKE EDWARDS Notts