Jim Bentley: Portsmouth win can kickstart our season

Alan Goodall celebrates his goal at Fratton Park earlier in the season.Alan Goodall celebrates his goal at Fratton Park earlier in the season.
Alan Goodall celebrates his goal at Fratton Park earlier in the season.
Morecambe boss Jim Bentley believes a win over Portsmouth will go a long way to getting his side heading back in the right direction.

The Shrimps have lost their last three games and head into their third home game in seven days hoping to put a dent in Pompey’s promotion hopes.

Bentley believes his side didn’t deserve to lose against Mansfield and Newport County, both 2-1 defeats, and insists his side aren’t far from where he wants them to be despite unrest amongst some fans.

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He said: “We believe we can get a result and it’s certainly one that would kickstart us.

“We’re not far away.

“The last two games we’ve been beaten we haven’t deserved to be.

“It’s about putting the ball in the back of the net at one end and keeping it out at the other and that’s the fine dividing line at the minute.

“We’ve been missing opportunities and then at the other end teams aren’t creating loads of chances but we’re just taking our eye of the ball and conceding goals which are costing us.”

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Pompey were knocked out of the FA Cup by south coast rivals Bournemouth on Saturday but are currently sixth in League 2 and need a win over The Shrimps to gain ground on the top three.

Bentley said: “They’re the biggest club in the division.

“They’re well backed and are in good form.

“They got beaten in the FA Cup but they’re in a healthy position in the league and will be looking for promotion.

“Anything other than promotion will probably be a failure for them.

“I know Paul Cook very well, he’s a good friend of mine, and he’s got them going and we know it will be a difficult game.”

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Pompey will be backed by a bumper away following at the Globe Arena but Bentley will hope his side will show some of the freedom that saw them race into a 3-0 lead at Fratton Park before ultimately drawing 3-3 back in August.

He said: “It’s a tough game but we’re capable of beating anyone and that’s the belief we’ll have coming into the game.

“We’re in a little bit of a ropey spell at the minute but football can change very quickly and that’s what we’ll believe in.

“We’ll give it our best shot against a very good Portsmouth side.”