Away Day Blues

By Keith Allman
Last updated : 19 November 2005

It's always hard to try and draw conclusions on a match which you didn't attend and thus end up relying on radio/snatched clips off the internet/garbled texts, so I'll try to keep it brief.

- Tactics and substitutions. I'll be honest and say that I think 4-5-1 was the right choice for today's game. Also, I'd go as far to say that no-one would've realistically expected LuaLua to last the whole match and him coming off wasn't a complete surprise, and probably in an ideal and injury free world he wouldn't have been starting either. But the problem is that there was just never seemingly any attempt from us to try and win the match. Very few chances, very little attacking pressure and no real threat. I can understand the logic of taking Lua off, but why just stick with one up front - Mbesuma no less, who apparently isn't entirely fit and is still adjusting to the English game? Up against the likes of Carragher and Hypia on his own he didn't stand much of a chance and, with the score at 2-0, there wasn't much to lose. Much like bringing on Skopelitis for Hughes; what's the point? Why not throw it to a 4-4-2, or maybe even 3 up top, just to try and salvage some pride, if nothing else. What's happened to the manager who gave us four strikers in his first game in charge?

- Rather cunningly, that brings us on to Perrin. I don't really see the point in changing managers since we'll still be left with the same squad, the same lack of funds in January and the same tough fixtures to come. In truth I don't think anyone expected much more than a defeat, but it's the manner of the defeat which causes the boggle. Alain is obviously a man who holds faith in his ideas - and they've served him well on the continent - and who's to say they won't start paying off over here more often. I think the downside is where that football worked so well; the French league where the game isn't played at such a pace and there's more time allowed on the ball. We did have some possession today but just seemed to go sideways or back to the keeper; the cutting edge just seems to be lacking. Of course it's up to him to adjust his methods accordingly, and you get the feeling he's going to be under serious pressure to do it sooner rather than later.

- I wish I could get commentary off The Quay, since all Solent ever seem to do is talk about the weather.

- At least Southampton lost hilariously.

That's all for now.

Portsmouth Match Reports

Sky Bet League One Sat 18th November 15:00

Portsmouth 1 - 0 Southend United

Last game - Match Centre


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