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Academy

Doyle: We Keep Fighting Back

Coach reflects on friendly win over Royal Artillery

14 September 2023

Pompey face Royal Artilley in 125th anniversary historical fixture
Photo: Jason Brown
Academy

Doyle: We Keep Fighting Back

Coach reflects on friendly win over Royal Artillery

14 September 2023

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It was a case of déjà vu for Pompey’s academy side at Privett Park on Wednesday night.

Exactly one week earlier, they had fought back from three goals down before beating Gosport on penalties in the Hampshire Cup.

And this time they were trailing 2-0 to Royal Artillery at the break, despite dominating possession and creating plenty of chances.

But Sam Folarin came off the bench and bagged a brace – the second coming from the spot – with Spencer Spurway also on target.

And Micael Doyle was pleased with the attitude and resilience shown by the young Blues to emerge 3-2 winners.

The professional development phase coach said: “It’s not a good habit to be going two or three goals down, but they have that spirit to keep coming back.

“I think it says a lot for our fitness that we’re finishing games really strongly and that’s a big positive for us.

"We knew that if we just tidied up in possession and made better decisions, then we’d start to get a lot of joy."

Michael Doyle

“We made a lot of changes in the second half to get some of our under-16s on and they were all brilliant against a men’s team.

“The goals we conceded were disappointing and a bit sloppy because we were dominating the game and had a lot of entries into their final third.

“We knew that if we just tidied up in possession and made better decisions, then we’d start to get a lot of joy.

“The lads certainly stepped up and moved the ball quicker, with the strength and power of Sam giving us a different dimension.

“Spencer was also able to drive the team on in the second half and moved into midfield. He’s full of energy and has that determination you want.”

The friendly was staged to recognise the opposition’s role in the formation of Portsmouth Football Club in 1898.

Doyle said: “It’s brilliant to be involved in this type of game and something that the boys can look back on, knowing they played a small part in celebrating the club’s history.”


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