Robinson: Pigott loves what we’ve done this season, I hope it wasn’t his last game at Plough Lane
By Alessandro Schiavone at Plough Lane
AFC Wimbledon manager Mark Robinson shed light on why his side was pegged back by Portsmouth less than a minute after scoring before eventually going to lose the game 3-1, as he pinpoints an inability to ‘switch on after the goal’ as the defining moment of the game.
After Pigott’s controversial opener, which may have been chalked off for offside had VAR been around in League One, Robinson was baffled to see his players interact with the official rather than getting on with the game.
The Dons manager is adamant Portsmouth’s equaliser could have been avoided as the south-West Londoners’ six-game unbeaten streak came to an end after staggeringly shipping two goals in quick succession on the stroke of half-time.
After his team’s League One safety had been confirmed, Robinson said: “My players brought it on themselves because they didn’t switch on after the goal. After the goal, we were having conversations with the ref which I don’t understand why.
”Instead of being set up and ready, because after you score the next five to 10 minutes are absolutely vital. “And within 15 seconds we are being opened up. They created their own doubts and that’s given Portsmouth a lift. And then to be fair, after that they’ve run all over us and they were quicker to everything and they played some really good football. But we lost that game in that 10-minute spell after we scored.”
The reason Wimbledon did not show the same determination as in midweek against Rochdale to try and salvage at least a point from a losing position had nothing to do with Northampton Town and Rochdale, their closest challengers, trailing at half-time as Robinson insisted they were unaware of what was going elsewhere.
He said: They didn’t know about those results. I just said that we’ve been in this sort of situation before and we’ve come back. We did it on Tuesday night, we came back from two goals down and I knew if we got a goal that we were more than capable of getting the point that we needed, minimum. But that didn’t really materialise. We had a couple of chances but to be fair, they’ve had some really good chances as well. And once you go down to 10 then it was always gonna be a struggle.”
Robinson said he’s ‘desperate’ for star striker Pigott to stay at Plough Lane although he can’t rule out a departure as speculation over a move to Watford intensified in midweek. Pigott netted his 20th league goal of the campaign against Portsmouth and has been in the form of his life this season.
He added: “I certainly hope it was not [his last game at Plough Lane]. I desperately want to keep Joe, he’s very important to what we do. I feel like he’s loving what we’ve done and what we’re growing. He’s pivotal to what we need to do in the future but those discussions haven’t taken place yet.”