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Awford: Still Work To Do

11 April 2014

Boss wants more progress against Daggers

Confidence is high at Fratton Park following the first back-to-back league wins of the season.

Buy Andy Awford insists that the job is not yet done.

A six-point haul from his first two games in charge has left Pompey five points clear of the drop zone with five left to play.

They followed up a 2-1 triumph at Newport by beating Hartlepool 1-0 at Fratton Park last Saturday.

And Awford wants to see more progress when he takes his side to Dagenham & Redbridge this weekend.

The caretaker Blues boss said: “I wanted them to enjoy the last result – that was important because it was some performance and some atmosphere.

“It was everything that we wanted and I couldn’t have asked for anything more from the players or fans.

“But that’s the benchmark now – we set a standard at Newport and raised it against Hartlepool.

“Now we need to maintain that or even keep nudging it forward and the players know the intensity demanded of them by me and the fans.

“If they continue to do what they’ve done over the last two games then we won’t have a problem.”

Pompey will face a Daggers side sitting six points outside the top seven following last week’s defeat at Wycombe.

Awford said: “They’re a good side. They were turned over last week, but I’m sure they’ll be looking to bounce back on their own patch.

“Dagenham a hard-working side and are still an outside bet to get into the play-offs.

“I’m good mates with their manager Wayne Burnett and I’m sure it’s going to be a tough game.”

This time last year, fans were celebrating a court case triumph that paved the way for Pompey’s community takeover.

Awford said: “I’m the most positive person in the world, but the club was down and out. So to still be here is a fantastic achievement from everyone.

“Now we just need to use that united spirit to get us over the line on the pitch.

“It’s been a slow process – probably slower than anyone realised. We’ve got a long way to go to completely rebuild this football club, but right now we just have to focus on the next five games.”

Patrick Agyemang has returned to training following an ankle injury, while Daniel Alfei (hamstring) and Wes Fogden (knee) will be assessed ahead of Saturday’s match.

But Andy Barcham (thigh), Ryan Bird (groin) and Romain Padovani (calf) are all still sidelined, while Ben Chorley serves the last game of a four-match ban.

Pompey are 2/1 with Sky Bet to win on Saturday. Open an account at www.skybet.com/pompey for great offers and to earn money for the club.

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