Boss wants to move on from AFC Wimbledon nightmare
It was the lowest point of Pompey’s season.
Fans had clamoured for tickets to watch the Blues’ first ever match against AFC Wimbledon, but many later wished they had not bothered.
A 4-0 reverse formed part of a run of five successive defeats that saw Guy Whittingham leave as manager.
And Richie Barker knows the Fratton faithful will be looking for revenge when Neal Ardley’s side visit Fratton Park this weekend.
The Blues boss said: “I’m sure everyone’s aware of the result at AFC Wimbledon earlier in the season.
“I watched DVDs of all the games that took place the month before I arrived and that was one of them. It wasn’t great.
“People talk about revenge, but half the team that will probably play on Saturday weren’t even there then.
“Neal did a fantastic job to keep AFC Wimbledon up last season because they were in and around the relegation zone for most of it.
“He made changes in the summer and has helped them progress to the next level.
“They’ll bring a lot of fans down and it should be a very good atmosphere. Now we need to look to transfer some of our away form to our home games.”
Pompey almost came into Saturday’s match on the back of a victory at Exeter, only to be denied by a stoppage-time equaliser.
Barker said: “The players were obviously disappointed in the aftermath, but we need to be more positive
“If it had been 1-1 at half-time and finished that way then we’d probably be saying it was a good result.
“It’s been a constructive week in training, so now we move on, work out how we can improve and then off we go again.”
Joe Devera went off with a knee injury at St James Park, while Simon Ferry has missed the last four games with a hamstring problem.
Barker said: “Simon trained with us on Thursday and with a bit of luck we’re hoping Joe will train on Friday.
“We’ll see how they get through that and then make a decision about whether they’re involved on Saturday.
“We’ve seen that Simon’s struggled to play three games in succession, so we’re right to be careful.”
Pompey are 11/10 favourites to beat AFC Wimbledon with Sky Bet. Sign up to an account at www.skybet.com/pompey for great offers and to earn money for the club.