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Neal: decision cost us

27 April 2016

Reaction from the manager after Pompey defeat

Neal Ardley felt that Portsmouth’s winning goal tonight should have been disallowed, but he was quick to pay credit to Paul Cook’s side on the night.

Speaking during a post-match interview for Dons Player, Neal said that Portsmouth were “outstanding” and that made it difficult for Wimbledon to find any fluency.

“They were very brave with their formation and played a diamond, which caused us problems,” said Neal. “Their front two were a threat. When you have a group of players who are some of the best in the league working that hard it is tough. We had to adjust at half-time because we were not getting enough of a foothold in the game. In the second-half we had a good go at it, but they were always a threat at one end and we were feeding off scraps a little bit.

“We had moments when it nearly fell for us, but we came up short. Their goal really shouldn’t have stood. At the time I thought it was a clear foul and their manager said it was a foul. I’ve watched it back and Sean Rigg got taken out above the thigh. Unfortunately, it has cost us because the goal has come two passes after that. It is really disappointing, but I will take that up with the referees.”

Neal added that the Dons have bounced back from defeat on several occasions this season and he expects them to do so again with Stevenage away up next.

“It is about how you pick yourself up after losing games,” Neal said. “We have two games left and we will try and do it again. Our destiny is in our own hands. The boys have done remarkably well to get to this point, they have done us proud.

“We came up against a good team and the best team won, albeit in controversial circumstances. They did to us what we have done to a lot of teams with our work-rate. They worked so hard that we struggled to get our game going.”

The full interview with Neal Ardley is now on Dons Player.

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