MEETINGS early last week leading up to Oxford United’s trip to Portsmouth helped bring the U’s closer together, says skipper Elliott Moore.

United put in a much-improved display at Fratton Park, and were unlucky to leave the south coast with nothing to show for their travels.

Callum Lang gave Pompey the lead inside two minutes, however Cameron Brannagan pulled the U’s level just four minutes later from the penalty spot.

Mark Harris and Josh Murphy both saw efforts smack the post, before United were dealt a sucker punch when Christian Saydee burst through and edged Portsmouth back in front.

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Speaking after the game, Moore revealed that discussions among the squad helped with unity after a tough period which has now seen the team pick up one win from their last 10 games.

Moore said: “We had a few meetings early on in the week just about sticking together now for the remaining games, and getting a reaction out of everyone, and we definitely had that in training.

“It showed in the game. It’s very disappointing not to come away with three points, or even anything, but we take the positives and go into Saturday.”

He added: “The performance was definitely there, and the reaction after the last couple of games was needed. It’s very disappointing not to come away with anything, never mind not three points.

“This week was a massive change and a massive reaction from the lads, and from everyone around us as well.

“I thought the training week was really good, and it showed in the performance. It’s all well and good saying about the performance, but we need the three points.

“We need to take the positives from every game and look at what we can do better. The most important thing now leading into the last 10 games is to get as many points as possible.”

Oxford Mail:

Moore marked his return from a hip injury with a brilliant tackle in the penalty box, to take the ball off the toe of Paddy Lane, who looked set to pull the trigger.

“It’s what I’m there to do, and if I don’t do that, then I’m not doing my job. There are a lot of positives to take from individuals and as a team,” said Moore.

“There’s now a big week ahead with a good week of training, and we go into Cheltenham ready to go.”

On his recent hip problem, Moore said: “You want to play every game, and with what I had, I thought I’d maybe miss one game, but to miss three was very disappointing.

“I was happy to be back out there, but disappointed not to come away with anything.”