Kenny Jackett’s Portsmouth side threw away a 3-1 lead at home to end up drawing 3-3 with nine-man Coventry, the Fratton faithful responded at full time with a chorus of boos directed at the Pompey manager.
After coming from behind to go into a 3-1 lead, courtesy of goals from Ronan Curtis, John Marquis and Gareth Evans, fans seemed optimistic that their side would see out a much-needed win.
When Coventry were reduced to nine men, after the dismissals of Fankaty Dabo and Gervane Kastaneer, it should have been an easy stroll to victory.
However, this is Pompey we’re talking about and nothing is ever straightforward for them.
A penalty scored by Matty Godden after Ben Close’s foolishness in the box and a late equaliser by Michael Rose through poor defending, condemned Pompey to just one win out of four this season domestically.
When 3-2 up with an extra two men on the field, Jackett decided to naively bring a centre back on (Christian Burgess) and take off an attacking midfielder (Evans) in an attempt to shut up shop and defend the lead instead of keeping the ball and trying to enhance his side’s lead, with the obvious numerical advantage, despite having attacking options on the bench. The tactical decision left Fratton Park completely bewildered and furious.
Four points out of a maximum total of 12, means Pompey lie 14th in the League One standings looking way off their promotion rival counterparts.
Pompey have only managed to muster one win from their last nine games in League One, which is embarrassing for a club with promotion aspirations.
Supporters frustrations can be understood as they’ve now had to witness Jackett’s hard on the eyes ‘hoof ball’, ‘pump it long’ style of play for over two years now, with little reward received.
Comparisons can be drawn to last season and the nightmare match that was Pompey’s 3-3 draw away at Southend back in February. After racing into a 3-0 lead, thanks to goals from Brynn Morris, Close and Ollie Hawkins, they look set to end their midseason slump with a much-needed win.
However, a Simon Cox hat-trick after Jackett’s mind-baffling decision to ‘park the bus’ meant Pompey were embarrassed in front of the Sky cameras and it proved pivotal to a failed attempt at promotion.
It seems clear that Jackett has lost parts of the dressing room as skipper Brett Pitman, who was brought on in the last minute, was seen shaking his head and walking straight down the tunnel past his manager.
The fan favourite scored 25 goals in all competitions in Jackett’s debut season of 2017/18, but ever since the striker has struggled for game time, mostly making cameo appearances from the bench. This left the club captain and fans increasingly frustrated, especially considering his goalscoring record of 38 goals in the past two seasons with the club.
Jackett was the subject of a barrage of abuse on social media on Tuesday night after the game, with the vast majority of Pompey fans calling for his head.
If the results and performances continue to be as poor, questions must be asked of the integrity and ambition of billionaire owner Michael Eisner, if he continues to stick with Jackett as manager.
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featured image credit sky sports