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AWFORD: MENTALITY IS KEY

18 November 2014

Boss wants professional performance at Aldershot

Andy Awford hopes that the FA Cup can help provide that winning feeling for Pompey again.

The Blues were well beaten at Plymouth in the league at the weekend to continue their dismal away form.

And they are on the road again on Wednesday for a first round replay against non-league Aldershot.

The sides could not be separated at Fratton Park 10 days earlier, with Jed Wallace and Danny Hollands on target in a 2-2 draw.

But Awford wants Pompey’s Football League nous to ultimately shine through at the Electrical Services Stadium.

The Blues boss said: “Everyone had a tough weekend, but it’s my job to pick them up and that’s what we’ve done.

“We’ve trained well and are looking forward to going to Aldershot and trying to win the tie.

“We’ll put a team out who are ready to go and also prepared to fight for their lives.

“We didn’t really want a replay – we had the home advantage and now we’ve lost that.

“I thought we were totally dominant in the first game right up until they scored, so I was disappointed that we couldn’t finish them off.

“But some sloppy play from us allowed Aldershot to score and also gave them a sniff of confidence.

“Now we’ve got to pick ourselves up after a poor league performance at Plymouth and make sure that we’re professional.

“I’ve no doubt we’ve got the skill and quality to do well, but we just need to make sure that the mentality is correct.

“Everyone likes an upset in the FA Cup, but we don’t want to be the victims of one on Wednesday.”

A bumper crowd will watch the tie and Awford is anticipating a vibrant atmosphere.

He said: “It’s a game that has to be decided on the night and is a bit of a local derby which should add a bit of spice.

“We’ll take 1,400 supporters and the noise they make will lift us because they’re the one constant at this football club. We need to perform for them and also ourselves.”

Pompey have no new injury concerns ahead of the Aldershot clash, while Paul Robinson is available again after serving a one-match ban.

Tickets are on sale for the Blues’ next home match against Morecambe on Saturday and can be bought from the ticket office or online here.

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