It is all my fault. At half time, I wrote: “Could be four up. Don’t blow it!”
And all too soon, passing became poorer and, over and again, we surrendered possession cheaply and dangerously.
At 1-1, I sat bewildered by the absence of urgency and control in our game. Portsmouth were not much better, also losing the ball in situations where it was harder than keeping it.
But while they always, in what Pete Sixsmith rightly called a “woeful second half”, looked slightly neater than us going forward, we had the better chances. Just as we had in the first half, when Cisse could have added two more to the slick fourth-minute finish after Andy Reid’s wonderful long pass put him through.
Then there was Malbranque’s swerving shot against the outside of a post.
We did blow it, losing 2-1, with no actual own goals but a deadly combination of suicidal defending and an amateurishly conceded penalty.
Pete will not be a model of hope and faith when he reflects on a defeat that once again thrusts us into that familiar territory where the bottom three is only a whisker away.