Midfielder admits Exeter goal was fortunate
It got Pompey on track for their third successive home victory.
But Ricky Holmes admitted that there was more than a hint of good fortune about his opener against Exeter.
The winger’s cross was carried over the goalkeeper and into the net by a strong gust of wind late in the first half.
And Ryan Bird’s second half brace secured victory, despite a late Grecians fightback.
“It was a worldy wasn’t it,” laughed Holmes. “No, it was a cross and thankfully the wind picked up right at that point.
“I didn’t hit it very hard – I was just looking to get the ball towards the back stick and it caught everyone by surprise.
“It was a good time to score, just before half-time. We’d been on top at that point and thankfully we went on to get all three points.
“It’s a great win and we’ve also got a game in hand, so I’m confident we’ll get up into the play-off places sooner or later.”
Despite the result, Holmes was frustrated that Pompey conceded two late goals to set up a nervous finale.
He said: “We put ourselves under pressure for no reason. The conditions played a part, but we have to see those games through.
“It was only when they started going direct that we struggled and we should have dealt with things better.
“We played well, don’t get me wrong, but I think when it was 3-0 the scoreline flattered us a bit.
“It’s a great three points because Exeter are a very good side – and they proved that on the ball.
“They came here and kept the ball well, but we had a good shape they couldn’t penetrate us.”