Four defeats in five came to an end at the weekend as Pompey won at Oldham. Victory was great, but the decision to drop Christian Burgess was the main talking point ahead of this game.
A retained three-man defence, including Burgess alongside Matt Clarke and fit again Jack Whatmough was mooted, but Kenny Jackett opted for a flat back four, which meant one had to dip out – Burgess was the odd man out.
In all honesty, going back to the visit of Gillingham the weekend prior, if not further, Burgess moving aside had been spoken about among some fans. This decision being made at Boundary Park was somewhat surprising. However, I’d agree with it the call made by the manager.
Burgess has been a key member of the squad since his arrival but his recent form has been questionable, costing us a number of goals, and whilst you win and lose as a team, so do not blame one player as such, his form hasn’t warranted a place I the starting XI, has it?
The fact we recorded a win at Oldham – secured due to the brace from the returning Brett Pitman – coupled with the performances of Clarke and Whatmough could suggest Burgess will again be on the bench this weekend when Oxford come to Fratton Park?
Yes, Burgess could well remain out of the side but I’m sure he’ll soon be back and come back stronger for it, which will ultimately benefit Pompey. Therefore this time out of team, provided he takes this positively, should be a good thing all round.
PLAY UP POMPEY