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AWFORD: AWAY FORM MUST IMPROVE

15 November 2014

Boss worried by record on the road

Pompey have been beaten just once at Fratton Park in the league all season.

But it is a different story on their travels, with Plymouth the latest side to take advantage of a lacklustre display.

The Blues never looked at the races from the moment Reuben Reid scored a sixth-minute penalty.

Further goals from Lewis Alessandra and Reid effectively ended the contest before the interval.

And Andy Awford knows that Pompey have to improve their dreadful away record if they want to climb the table.

The Blues boss said: “We conceded a soft penalty early on and that left us with a mountain to climb – especially at a place like Plymouth, whose home form is so good.

“It was a decision that sometimes goes your way and sometimes doesn’t. There was contact, but he went down easily.

“After that, though, our defending simply wasn’t good enough and they punished us for that.

“Our home record is promotion form, but the worrying thing is that our away record is relegation form.

“That’s not the first time we’ve played like that on the road this season and it’s extremely disappointing.

“I thought we’d come through it because our last away game at Shrewsbury was a lot more solid and we arguably deserved something from the game.

“But we didn’t deserve anything against Plymouth because of the way we defended in the first half.

“I thought we were more evenly matched in the middle of the park, but the difference in both boxes was there for all to see.

“We didn’t create enough clear-cut chances, but they took their opportunities when they presented themselves.

“We stuck at it, worked hard and didn’t go under in the second half, but we’ve got to do better on the road without a shadow of a doubt.”

Next up for Pompey is another away fixture – their FA Cup first round replay against Aldershot.

Awford said: “There were problems in that performance and now it’s my job to lift the players for an important game on Wednesday.”

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