Southampton boss Nigel Adkins annoyed by Pompey leveller

Nigel Adkins
Adkins took over at St Mary's following Alan Pardew's sacking

Southampton boss Nigel Adkins was disappointed by his side's defending after they conceded a late leveller against Portsmouth.

Joel Ward scored with less than 10 minutes to go after Rickie Lambert had given the Saints the lead.

"I'm really annoyed we haven't defended their goal," he told BBC Radio Solent.

"If we'd dealt with their free-kick well then we'd be stood here with three points. Individually you need to have the desire to make that ball."

He continued: "On the positive side, we've gone one point clear at the top going into the Boxing Day fixtures.

"We'll learn the lessons from the game and go again."

The draw means the Saints have won just once in their last five games.

Despite their patchy form Adkins is hopeful his side can maintain their promotion push after Christmas.

"We're endeavouring to play football and be positive although I'd like to see us keep more clean sheets.

"We go into the second half of the campaign in a very good position, full of optimism and looking forward," he concluded.