Michael Appleton’s reign as Portsmouth manager got off to a disappointing start with defeat at Watford.
…a third consecutive home win and in its own way, as remarkable as the last two.
In-form Watford powered into the Championship play-off positions with an emphatic victory over Portsmouth.
For the sake of accuracy and not getting too carried away, we must mention the two chances missed by David Nugent at either end of either half…and things might’ve been different if the first of those, following some rather hesitant defending, had ended up in the top corner rather than the Rookery. But much more typical was what occupied the rest of the ninety minutes: a game that we didn’t chase so much as gently coax, safe in the knowledge that it was ours as long as we didn’t scare it off.
Portsmouth’s traumatic week sunk to new depths as they were knocked out of the Carling Cup by Watford.
Watford would seem to specialise in compounding the problems of troubled south-coast clubs, but Portsmouth’s first-team coach Kevin Bond did not bemoan the impact of Harry Redknapp’s departure as manager last week.
Three BSAD reports including…Despite recent events, Portsmouth are a much better side than the last round’s victims, and this success required the intense, concentrated implementation of a well-prepared gameplan. Required it, got it…and weagain, astonishingly and spectacularly, arrived at the point where we’d put the game out of reach with half an hour remaining.
More games from 30th November at https://oldwatford.com/tag/nov30
BBC Sport: Watford’s day was summed up in a bizarre incident in the 79th minute, when Allan Neilsen was booked for unsporting behaviour and received a second yellow for foul and abusive language, resulting in his dismissal.
In truth, the off-pitch politics of the First Division has proved to be rather more fascinating than much of the football, so far. It’s been hard to focus, somehow…and hard to regard the early season jostling as particularly important when it’s patently obvious that several of those involved might be bust by Christmas. Bizarrely, and yet tellingly, I have absolutely no idea what league positions some clubs – Walsall, Rotherham, Sheffield United, for example – currently occupy. And yet I know rather more about their latest accounts….
In the end, although Watford had plenty of possession, they never looked like doing anything and Pompey deserved their win. Once we had gone a goal down it seemed that the players didn’t know what to do. Sure, Pompey are a very good side, but for my liking the players surrendered all too easily in the five minutes either side of half time. It almost looked like we came for a 0-0 and hoped to get one in the last five minutes.
A solid performance by Watford at Vicarage Road ended a poor run of form from Gianluca Vialli’s team.
Nothing of any consequence happens on a Sunday evening. The invention of the wheel, the discovery of penicillin, the abolition of slavery, the introduction of the backpass law…none of them happened while the people involved were lounging around in front of “Monarch Of The Glen”.