'Words were exchanged,' Distin admits
Fulham 3 Portsmouth 1
Monday 02 February 2009
On the pitch, Portsmouth are cracking up, and off it they appear to be too. Two months without a Premier League win tells you all you need to know about how the south coast side is playing but the dressing room is not a picture of unity.
Tony Adams, the Portsmouth manager for the moment at least, admitted words were exchanged following the game. "We have an open forum," he admitted.
Sylvain Distin, captain for the day backed him up: "Of course we exchange words. There is a bit of frustration. Everybody is a bit hot, still worrying from the game. You don't talk with calm and composure like you do now [long after the game]. But there was no fight – nothing special other than any other game."
The difficulties Portsmouth face are immense, with such a depleted squad. Adams saw Jermain Defoe and Lassana Diarra sold last month and here he was without the injured Sol Campbell and Niko Kranjcar.
The substitute Erik Nevland, helped by Simon Davies, took advantage of more poor defending to score twice before David Nugent's header. The Cottagers' manager Roy Hodgson was in a similar position to Adams a year ago and survived.
Goals: A Johnson (14) 1-0; Nevland (72) 2-0; Nevland (80)3-0; Nugent (84) 3-1.
Fulham (4-4-2): Schwarzer; Pantsil, Hughes, Hangeland, Konchesky; Davies, Etuhu, Murphy, Dempsey (Gera, 90); Zamora (Nevland, 63), A Johnson. Substitutes not used: Zuberbuhler (gk), Andranik, Gray, Stoor, Kallio.
Portsmouth (4-4-2): James; G Johnson, Kaboul (Pamarot, 77), Distin, Hreidarsson; Pennant, Mullins, Davis, Traore (Utaka, 63); Kanu (Nugent h/t), Crouch. Substitutes not used: Begovic (gk), Lauren, Mvuemba, Little.
Referee: A Wiley (Staffordshire).
Booked: Portsmouth Mullins. Fulham None
Man of the match: Simon Davies.
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