Guy unhappy at sloppy defending against Oxford
Any Pompey fan expecting League Two to be a cakewalk was in for a rude awakening.
It all started so well with Patrick Agyemang heading the Blues ahead against Oxford to cap a bright start to the match.
But a brace each from Alfie Potter and Deane Smalley – with a red card from Johnny Ertl sandwiched in between – meant it was the visitors who were celebrating come the final whistle.
And Guy Whittingham was frustrated at the sloppy defending that allowed Oxford run out comfortable winners.
The Blues boss said: “We’re in a position where we were dominating the game, so it’s a very frustrating result.
“There were a couple of mistakes when we weren’t professional enough and allowed them back into the game.
“We shot ourselves in the foot by conceding a goal that should have been stopped at source and then we didn’t defend well enough for the second goal.
“I don’t blame some of the fans for leaving early, but many of them applauded us at the end and will be behind us all the way.
“The one thing we can take from the game is that everyone kept trying right until the end.
“Andy Barcham made a tackle in the 93rd minute at left-back and then David Connolly chased a long ball over the top to try to stop it going out of play.”
Ertl saw red for a challenge on Oxford’s Danny Rose which will rule Pompey’s skipper out of the next three games.
Whittingham said: “Johnny’s jumped with his arm up to protect himself. He didn’t swing his arm, but the referee’s made his decision and there’s nothing we can do about that.
“We tried to stay positive after going to 10 men. We didn’t want to go 4-4-1 and keep things tight and maybe we’ll get criticised for that, but we felt we had the players who were capable of getting us back in the game.
“Johnny’s a big part of our team, but now there’s a chance for someone else to come in and stake their claim.”