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15 October 2016

A THRILLING 2-2 draw between Argyle and Portsmouth included plenty of drama, but concluded with a fair outcome in the eyes of manager Derek Adams.

With well over 13,000 fans packed into Home Park to witness four goals and plenty of quality, spoils were shared in a match that would have been a great advert for divisions well above Sky Bet League Two.

“It was entertaining game,” said Adams. “It’s two very good football clubs going for the win today.

“I think that when you have such a big attendance at a game, you want goals in the match; you want to see good football; you want to see a wee bit of controversy; and we’ve seen that all today.”

Yann Songo’o headed the Pilgrims ahead on 21 minutes, but the visitors responded 19 minutes later with a smart finish from Kyle Bennett. A superb strike from Danny Rose after the break put Pompey in front, but Connor Smith leveled the game in the 89th minute. A smart run and square ball from Ben Purrington allowed substitute Smith to curl an effort past David Forde and send the swelled Green Army into raptures.

“We just needed to stiffen up the midfield at that moment in time,” said Adams when discussing Smith’s introduction. “It became a bit stretched, the game, and we just changed the formation a little bit to sit Songo’o in midfield, and played [David] Fox and Smith either side to give us a wee bit of solidity. It was hard for us, just because Bennett was coming in off the side, and [Gary] Roberts; they’re good players.

“I’ve seen that from Connor since he’s come to the football club. He’s a football player that plays on the front foot, he plays balls round the corner, he’s got the ability to finish - both left and right footed. He took it well and put it in the top corner.”

The Greens pushed for a winner in stoppage time to no avail, but the boss was more than satisfied with a draw from a competitive, evenly-matched game between strong promotion contenders.

“I thought that we responded well. To be fair to the players, I think they thought they could make it 3-2,” said Adams. “That caused us a bit of problem, because you’ve got to take a point at some point in the game.

“I think I’ll be happy with a point, because of where we were in the game. We were 1-0 up, then you go back to 2-1 so late in the game. You lose a goal that comes out of nothing really; it’s a great strike from Rose and we have to respond to that. We showed again that we go to the last minutes of the game.

“Keeping the gap [to fourth place] to seven points and extending our unbeaten run is important.”
 

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