Danny Cowley hopes he has done enough to keep the Portsmouth manager’s job permanently despite missing out on a play-off place after a 1-0 final day defeat at home to Accrington.
Pompey had to better Oxford and Charlton’s result to retain their place in the top six but Adam Phillips’ first-half goal was enough to earn Accrington the win.
Cowley, who only signed a short-term deal after replacing Kenny Jackett as head coach, said: “I am extremely disappointed with the result but the league doesn’t lie and after 46 games we weren’t good enough.
“Accrington came here to put in a performance and are a very good side but I was disappointed with our first-half performance.
“We were maybe fortunate to only be one down at half-time but we changed it for the second half.
“I thought we controlled possession and the majority of the ball but we just didn’t quite have enough.
“Maybe if we scored the first goal early in the second half, we might have found the winner.
“All in all what can you say? We just didn’t have enough.
“We were extremely pleased to come here and when we arrived we were in 10th but the squad just was a little lacking.
“Looking forward it’s now down to people above our heads as to the direction the club goes, obviously we would love to stay here because it’s a great club and a great set of fans.”
Accrington took the lead in the 23rd minute when Phillips played a neat one-two with Harvey Rodgers before firing the ball high into the net.
Phillips was close to doubling his and the visitors’ tally six minutes later when his 30-yard free-kick was magnificently pushed around the post by Craig MacGillivray.
Pompey were much improved in the second half and Ronan Curtis and George Byers both called goalkeeper Toby Savin into action as they pushed for an equaliser.
Savin made another good stop five minutes from time to deny substitute Charlie Daniels from close range before making a flying save to keep out Curtis’ stoppage-time free-kick.
Accrington manager John Coleman praised his opposite number.
He said: “We didn’t come here to spoil their party but we wanted to be honest for the other clubs.
“I feel sorry for the Cowley brothers as they are as passionate about the game as me and actually remind me of myself when I first came through
“I thought we controlled the first half and deserved a lead through a well-taken goal and possibly even more.
“We are looking forward to next season and things are looking up for the club as this was our highest finish in the league since we came back in.”
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