Jones: 'We've taken a step in the right direction'

Nathan Jones watches on

Nathan Jones was pleased to get his first clean sheet as Addicks boss on Saturday afternoon, as his side claimed an impressive 0-0 draw against Portsmouth at the Valley.

“They are a good side,” he told local media. “They’re top of the league, they’re scoring at will against most sides. So for us to put in that level of performance, keep a clean sheet, shows we’ve taken a step in the right direction.”

Key to that clean sheet was the work of Macaulay Gillesphey, who put in a wonderful saving challenge to deny Myles Peart-Harris as he ran through on goal in the 88th minute.

“Sometimes it’s a bit more endeavour than knowhow,” said Jones. “That’s where we’ve got to get that balance. But it’s a wonderful tackle at the end.”

“It would have been a travesty if we’d ended up losing, especially in that manner.”

It is now two draws from two against two of the league’s best sides, and the boss was delighted with the consistency his side are starting to show in the big games.

“We went toe-to-toe with Bolton, we went toe-to-toe with these today. I saw lots of what I wanted to see from my team,” he said.

“We’ve gone three unbeaten now – yes, they’re draws and we want to win games – but there’s a foundation being laid and it’s just constant work.”

Charlton may have taken a point before the game, but after a match in which the home side had plenty of chances to win it, Jones believes Portsmouth were just as happy with the result.

“We showed we’re an aggressive team today and got right after them. They’ll be getting on the bus and they’ll be delighted with the point. It’s a good point for them because the other two [sides in the top three] lost. They were in a proper game today, and that’s all we can ask.”

The boss is now looking ahead to the match at Derby County on Tuesday night.

“We know Derby is a very, very difficult game. But we aren’t going to fear it,” he said.

“We have a way of playing and we go after teams. If you’re good enough to beat us then fine. If you’re not then, we’re Charlton – that’s the mentality now.”

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