Football - Whittingham plays down defeat

Portsmouth boss Guy Whittingham is not reaching for the panic button just yet despite his side's dismal start to the season.

PA Sport Report

A record League Two crowd of 18,181 at Fratton Park saw Pompey, early season promotion favourites, beaten 4-1 by Oxford.

Deane Smalley and Alfie Potter scored two goals apiece as the U's usurped the lead given to the hosts by Patrick Agyemang.

Chris Wilder's side almost got a fifth goal late on shortly after Johnny Ertl was sent off when Johnny Mullins' header came back off a post

Whittingham said: "This is a whole new team we have put together and they will take time to gel. This is only the first day and there is a long season ahead.

"For 35 minutes I thought we were doing well and looked a good team but in the end I think the emotion of the day got to us.

"The crowd were desperate for us to win and the noise they generated was unbelievable at times.

"The red card changed the game. At that stage we were 2-1 behind and we felt we could get back into the match but when Johnny went, we fell away."

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