Cotterill reflects on Bristol City win
Another win, another impressive performance, another entertaining game and again the goals were shared around, what more could we ask for?
Steve Cotterill, besides being disappointed at the goal we conceded, could not complain at all and heaped praise on the fans, who were again - despite our limited numbers - fantastic: 'we gave away a sloppy goal that I wasn't happy about, but we drove on and won the game.
'After taking the lead we had to stay strong, and then we hit them on the counter-attack for the third.
'The crowd were tremendous, so a big thank you to them. They played a huge part. When Bristol City equalised, they got behind us in force and it was deafening out there. You couldn't get any messages out to the players it was so loud.'
One man that came in for special praise, and rightly so, was John Utaka - the man that I had a 'feeling' would be the 'key man' for us in this game as I wrote in the preview, whilst I am self congratulating I also predicted a 3-1 win! - who had a fine game and caped his recent efforts with a cracking goal: 'the reception John got when he came off says everything. I asked him afterwards if he realised why he got it.
'It wasn't for his goal, it was for his work-rate. The goal was just the icing on the cake.
'It's pleasing for John because his form has been encouraging. He's certainly got a lot fitter.
It was a very, very good goal by John and we're delighted for him. He's doing a lot of the work people didn't see him do before, and he's playing with a smile on his face and enjoying it.'
I NEVER thought I would see the day that John Utaka left the field to a standing ovation, but that was exactly what he got last night and, as Cotterill says, he deserved it!
As I had mentioned going into this game he had been impressive at Sheffield United, was impressive against Leicester on Friday and was even more so last night against Bristol City causing all manor of problems for their defence - his tracking back was also something that shocked, yet very much pleased me BIG time. Countless times he was back behind Carl Dickinson covering the left back, which left me having to make several double takes to make sure it was him!
Keep it up John as THAT kind of effort, commitment and willingness to give it everything is all us Pompey fans ever ask for and are more than happy to get.
9 goals in 2 games, with 7 different people scoring them is very pleasing - this was something that we, Chixy, Rob (sea-juicer) and I had discussed on Friday after the game, before the Bristol City game and again after it as this is what we want, and need to see happening.
Yep it is nice to have one person score 15-20 goals although half a dozen or more players scoring around half a dozen goals apiece, with some others chipping in with a few more, will make a lot of difference to our season.
Relying on one person for all the goals is something we cannot do so hopefully this also carries on, which is also something Cotterill wants to see.
It was another game, and not just because we won - of course that helps do not get me wrong, that I really enjoyed. Bring on the Boro, it might be at The Riverside, and we might not travel that well but they are ripe for the picking and we are in picking form and mood at the moment!
PLAY UP POMPEY!