POMPEY SHOW THEIR RESOLVE
PAUL COOK has been in football too long to know that you’ve never got the game sussed and he was relieved to escape Wycombe with a point after being 2-0 down after just 30 minutes.
Portsmouth had put six past York on Tuesday night but quickly found themselves up against it at Adams Park as Michael Harriman’s stunning 40yarder and then Garry Thompson gave the Chairboys a two-goal cushion on home soil.
But Caolan Lavery’s tap-in during first-half injury time and Adam Webster’s header before the hour mark levelled the game up as Pompey finally kicked into gear.
Both sides had chances to win it but Cook admitted a draw was a fair result after his side’s nightmare start.
“We couldn’t have played much worse at the start,” said Cook.
“We probably thought we were a little bit better than what we are and would come and dominate the ball on a nice day out in front of 2,000 away fans.
“We were in danger of being blown away at times in the first half because of our sloppiness but great credit to the players that they’ve dug themselves out of the hole.
“We’ve won by six on Tuesday and all of a sudden you’ve cracked it – well you’ve never cracked it in football and the day you think that, you find yourself where we were today coming up to half time.”
Wycombe were well on top throughout the first half and led on 28 minutes when Harriman lifted the ball into an empty net from 40 yards following Brian Murphy’s poor clearance from outside his area.
The winger then turned provider two minutes later, crossing for Thompson who slid in to score his 100th career league goal.
But Lavery brought Pompey back into the game on the stroke of half-time, tapping in Marc McNulty’s squared pass for a timely lifeline.
And it was all-square just after the break as Webster climbed highest to head in Ben Davies’ 56th-minute corner.
Matt Ingram parried away Davies’ free-kick late on as the visitors looked to complete the comeback but Wycombe held firm for a battling point.
Despite throwing away the two-goal advantage, Gareth Ainsworth knew his side had matched one of the league’s best teams and offered no prizes for guessing the goal of the day from Harriman.
“Michael’s first touch has set that goal up and it’s a great finish from a special player,” said Ainsworth.
“I thought he was outstanding and his energy level for a loan player is ridiculous.
“He’s a real asset to us and is showing us what he can do every week.
“I’m not content with the point and I’d have loved the three.
“In the first half we took the biggest team in the league right to the edge and then some.
“But they came at us in the second half and have done great to get back into the game from 2-0.”
STAR MAN MICHAEL HARRIMAN
Wycombe PLAY UP: Portsmouth’s Caolan Lavery carries the ball back after making it 2-1 and Wycombe’s Matt Ingram makes a late save, inset