Tubbs praised for perseverance

Matt Tubbs scored his first goal for Pompey.  Picture:Joe Pepler
Matt Tubbs scored his first goal for Pompey. Picture:Joe Pepler

Andy Awford praised Matt Tubbs’ professionalism after he broke his Pompey duck.

Tubbs opened his Blues goal account at the fifth time of asking with the decisive goal in the 1-0 win over Hartlepool.

The 30-year-old buried Ryan Taylor’s cross with a bullet header in the 60th minute to grab his 16th goal of the season.

That tempered the frustration of missing a couple of golden chances in the 0-0 draw at Wycombe.

Awford explained not getting on the scoresheet at Adams Park frustrated Tubbs.

But he showed the guile of a predator to keep putting himself in threatening positions against Pools.

That saw him rewarded, with Awford confident the goals will flow for him moving forward.

He said: ‘It’s great for Matt because he keeps putting himself in there.

‘He keeps making runs and keeps putting himself in there.

‘That’s why he’s got his reward.

‘That’s what good goalscorers do.

‘After last weekend it would have been easy for him not to make that run.

‘But he got to the near post and got his reward.

‘All goalscorers have a bit of a barren run.

‘He’s had four games, so I’m not sure if that is a barren run or not, but I’m delighted for him.

‘He was frustrated last week, of course he was, but you don’t get the goals he’s had in his career if you don’t keep putting yourself in there.

‘He’s on the end of stuff so he’ll miss more chances – but he’ll score a lot of goals as well, don’t worry about that.’

The win over Pools also marked the second clean sheet on the bounce for Pompey.

With Awford again utilising a 3-5-2 formation, the Blues looked solid defensively with the visitors scarcely creating an opportunity.

The Blues boss was delighted with the steel his team showed at the back.

But he felt the clean sheet was as much to do with the work of midfielders James Dunne and Danny Hollands.

Awford explained he likes the look of Pompey defensively when employing wing-backs.

He said: ‘It was a quiet afternoon for Paul Jones.

‘We defended well but we were organised. It was very professional.

‘The lads at the back did their job as did the two in the middle of the park, They mopped up and did their bits.

‘The whole shape was pleasing.

‘We can go to a four, but we don’t concede many with a three and that was the case again.’