Dean Keates bemoans Walsall individual errors in defeat to Portsmouth
Boss Dean Keates praised the workrate and endeavour of his players but felt individual errors cost Walsall dear after they slipped to a 3-2 defeat against Portsmouth.
In what overall was an even game at the Banks’s Stadium, the Saddlers conceded two soft first-half goals to gift the initiative to Kenny Jackett’s side.
First Morgan Ferrier gave away a needless penalty with Brett Pitman subsequently opening the scoring.
Dan Scarr then misjudged the flight of the ball to allow Omar Bogle to race through and score.
Viv Soloman-Otabor fired in a third for the visitors after the interval but while Jon Guthrie went on to score twice, it was too late for the Saddlers to salvage the point they deserved.
“The endeavour, the work rate, it was all there and on another day we could have got a point,” Keates said.
“I’m just disappointed with the goals we conceded. Portsmouth didn’t have to earn their goals.
“We conceded three and they are from three mistakes. Liam Roberts has picked the ball out of the net three times and he’s only had a couple of crosses to take.”
Ferrier gave away the penalty for a shove on Nathan Thompson.
And Keates agreed when asked if the push was “needless.”
“Yeah you’re right, it was,” the manager continued.
“I saw it and he’s made that decision in that split second. It’s cost us.
“There wasn’t a lot between the two teams before that.”
Portsmouth’s third goal came after Guthrie tried to win the ball ahead of Pitman but lost out.
“Can we affect those three decisions on the training ground? Possibly not,” Keates added.
“They are just split second decisions. But I don’t want to single people out.
“Other than the goals I thought we had some decent phases of the play. Second-half we told the players to be a bit braver on the ball and they were.
“We’re disappointed not to take anything from the game. But we will re-group. We have now got to get something at Sunderland.”