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AWFORD: SERVICE, PLEASE

16 October 2014

Boss calls for more creativity at Bury

Andy Awford has called for better service to his strikers at Bury on Saturday.

Pompey failed to create many chances until the final 30 minutes against Mansfield last week.

Paul Robinson eventually rescued a point after being teed-up by substitute Nigel Atangana.

But Awford was unhappy with how his side had performed earlier in the match and wants to see a big improvement at the JD Stadium.

The Blues boss said: “The problem wasn’t up front last Saturday – it was getting the ball up to them.

“I always say the big worry is if you’re not creating chances and for an hour we weren’t.

“It’s not always the person on the ball’s fault – he might not have someone to pass it to.

“We needed someone to grab the game by the scruff of its neck and thankfully that’s what Nigel did when he came on.

“What I’m after at Bury is the last half-an-hour performance against Mansfield, which was very good.

“The amount of chances we created in that spell meant we probably should have won the game, despite what went before.

“So the message has been continue what you did then and let’s make sure that first hour doesn’t happen again.

“We’ve reminded them of what they need to do and everyone’s been working very hard on the training ground.”

Pompey will face a Shakers side who currently sit third in the League Two table and are odds-on with the bookies to win promotion.

Awford said: “I think most people had them down as one of the favourites to go up and they’ve started well.

“But we’ll be on the front foot and try to get at them straight away.

“Last season we tried to soak things up and hit them on the counter-attack, but we conceded four and were lucky to come away with a point.”

Adam Webster will miss the match after limping off injured in the recent Johnstone’s Paint Trophy defeat to Northampton.

Awford said: “He was put in a knee brace as a precaution and fortunately it’s cartilage damage rather than ligament.

“It’s still not great news, but it’s better than it could have been and he’s probably weeks away rather than months.”

Jack Whatmough (hamstring) will also miss out, but Ben Chorley is available for selection after recovering from a calf injury.

Pompey are 14/5 with Sky Bet to beat Bury. Open an account at www.skybet.com/pompey to help the Blues win £250,000 in the Sky Bet Transfer Fund.

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