Boss bemoans late first half leveller
Pompey were 10 minutes away from becoming victims of an FA Cup upset at Fratton.
The hosts were trailing 2-1 to Conference Premier side Aldershot, who recovered from falling behind to Jed Wallace’s penalty.
Goals from Jordan Roberts and Mark Molesley got the healthy travelling contingent dreaming of a giant-killing.
But Danny Hollands headed home a late equaliser to earn a replay, despite Paul Robinson then getting sent off.
It left Andy Awford frustrated that his side could not make the most of their first half dominance to have wrapped the game up by the break.
The Blues boss said: “It was an entertaining game and was edge-of-the-seat stuff for pretty much the whole afternoon.
“We started very well and had two fantastic chances before we scored the first goal.
“It was unfortunate that we couldn’t convert either of those, but Jed stuck away the penalty and we were hoping to build on that.
“Unfortunately we let them off the hook in the first half and they got a sniff of confidence from the goal they got.
“We didn’t defend that properly and when you score that close to half-time, your tails are up.
“Fair play to Aldershot – they pushed us back for long periods of the second half and there was an unfortunate error for their second goal.
“But we showed a lot of character to come back from behind and now we’ll look forward to the replay.”
Pompey will now have a tough trip to the Electrical Services Stadium, but Awford is confident that they will progress.
He said: “I expected us to be in the draw and I still expect us to go through – I really do.
“We’ve got enough quality in our side to cause Aldershot problems and maybe the result will be a wake-up call to the players.
“But all eyes are on Plymouth in the league now – that’s the next game and that’s what we have to prepare for.”