Peterborough United 0-3 Portsmouth
Location: London Road
Date: 28th January 2012
Following a run of three straight defeats in all competitions, The Posh were looking to pick up 3 points against fellow strugglers Portsmouth. Darren Ferguson said that his side would be up for the game, but how wrong he turned out to be?
Posh began with Lee Tomlin up front alongside Paul Taylor, with Emile Sinclair dropping to the bench. This meant that Nicky Ajose was not named as a substitute. Tomlin was pushed up front to allow the return of midfielder Lee Frecklington, who had a fairly quiet afternoon.
It was Portsmouth who started the brighter of the two teams as Erik HUSEKLEPP opened the scoring from 6 yards after keeper Joe Lewis made a double save.
Posh were struggling to get into the game, as Huseklepp kept Posh captain Grant McCann out of the game for much of the first half.
The game then went through a quiet patch, until more mistakes in the Posh defence allowed former transfer target Jason PEARCE to head home, beating Lewis at his near post.
The referee bought the first half to a close, as boo`s rang around London Road, the fans making their views known to the players and managing staff.
Sky Sports 2`s ‘Take It Like A Fan` were filming at London Road today, and as part of their show, one lucky Posh fan got the chance to score a penalty in front of the London Road end. After a bit of banter between the Posh faithful, and presenter Bianca Westwood, it was time for the fan to have his moment of glory, or so he hoped? he put his penalty straight down the middle, and straight at one of Posh`s Youth Team goalkeepers. This must have been the easiest £100 the young keeper has ever won! This was the highlight of today`s game for many Posh fans. As Sky Sports presenter ‘Fenners` left the field of play, both teams returned to the pitch, Portsmouth definitely looking the happier side.
Half-time: Peterborough 0-2 Portsmouth
There were no half time changes by either side.
Things had to change for Posh, but unfortunately for Ferguson`s side, it was a below par second half, where Portsmouth seemed to be happy to see out their win. The Portsmouth fans out sung the Posh fans all day long, which couldn`t have helped the players` confidence.
It got worse for Posh on 78 minutes when Erik HUSEKLEPP made the most of a rare mistake by Ryan Bennett, and left Joe Lewis with no chance, with a perfect finish into the bottom corner.
George Boyd (pictured below) continued to fail to make an impact, as did the rest of the team, they couldn`t find a way round Ricardo Rocha and his defence. Many fans left the ground early in disgust in what was a terrible performance by the Posh.
Grant McCann had a couple of free kicks in the game, all wasted.
The match was now over and Portsmouth just had to see out the last few minutes.
With the travelling fans ecstatic, they continued singing until the other three stands were empty; the club showed the Peterborough players and fans how to do their jobs. They are sure to be travelling home with smiles on their faces, having not had much luck in recent weeks.
Full-time: Peterborough 0-3 Portsmouth
POST MATCH QUOTES
Peterborough manager Darren Ferguson: ‘When you concede poor goals at this level you get punished.
We have always known we could find ourselves in a tough run and we realise that everyone, including some of our fans, will be doubting us.
But I don’t have a problem with that. Myself and the players had a good chat in the dressing room immediately after the game and we are all up for the challenge of turning results around.
We need to find a way of breaking opposition teams down but we are not going to change the way we play and I’m certainly not going to alter my philosophy.
Doing things this way got us promoted and had us in the top half of the table earlier in the season.’
Portsmouth boss Michael Appleton: ‘My big gripe with Erik is that he regularly shows flashes of brilliance but lacks the end product.
We played him in a more advanced role today and he got his rewards with a couple of goals. It is something I expect to see him doing more often.’
Vital Posh Viewpoint
This had to be a game that Posh thought they should win, and also owed to the fans after the previous 3 losses. But it didn`t turn out as planned.
Portsmouth are struggling on and off the pitch, with their clubs future in doubt. They need to find a buyer soon or they could be in serious trouble. But this result will have come as a massive boost to everyone at the club.
A poor defensive display again blamed on an unconfident Joe Lewis. Many Posh fans seem to be losing patience with the big stopper, although other fans still think he deserves to wear the number 1 for Peterborough United.
Fans are now also calling for manager Darren Ferguson to invest in new players before Tuesday night`s transfer deadline. They feel if he doesn`t buy someone soon, that they could slip into a relegation battle.
These are nervous times at Peterborough as they slip down the table towards the bottom three.
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