Date: 23rd February 2011 at 5:23pm
Written by:

Following last night’s match against Crystal Palace, I was met with many feelings. Boredom, dejection, restlessness at our display – but in complete contrast, absolute delight. You may find this weird, but just bare with me.

I may have lost a fiver in bets, watched yet another drab, boring long ball style that we’ve become accustomed to for the majority of this season; but to see us finally playing badly but still grinding out a win is something I’ve personally been waiting to see for a long time.

I’m not a great fan of long ball – in fact I can’t stand watching Pompey play it (mainly as we haven’t really got the players to do that, nor ply them to a fluid 4-4-2 formation), and paying for a season ticket this year has been completely unjustified thus far, watching 11 players hoof a ball to a Ginger man with little ability as a lone striker.

The continued brilliance of Joel Ward added to what was a lacklustre tie, with the youngster once again taking the plaudits, with chants of ‘There’s only one Joel Ward’ ringing out of the Fratton End following his substitution. Young starlets are in their abundance following the arrivals of Ritchie de Laet and Jonathan Hogg, so it seems it’s only a matter of time until Steve Cotterill finds a formation that allows them to play to their strengths.

Hogg reminds me a little of Sean Davis when he first signed for us in that swoop from Spurs, including Pedro Mendes and Noe Pamarot. He’s small, tenacious and tough in the tackle; but very much an unfashionable footballer. Hopefully he can prove the lynch-pin in our side that allows the likes of Nugent, Kitson, King and Cotterill to stay further in attack, allowing them to create more chances in front of goal.

Personally I’d prefer it if we went back to the formation of 2003. A solid 3-5-2 wingbacks, with known pace men David Cotterill and de Laet running the channels, with Ward and Hogg bossing the midfield. Of course, I’m not the manager, but I’d much prefer to see attractive football – but would I substitute that for constant defeats? Of course not.

Overall – a terrible game, with many positives.

Written by Dan Brett.

The views within this article are the views of the individual who wrote and submitted this piece, sometimes solely theirs. They are not necessarily shared by the Vital Pompey Site Journalists.

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