Dindane recovery pleases Grant

Portsmouth boss Avram Grant hailed Aruna Dindane’s character after he recovered from a poor penalty miss to seal his side’s win over Burnley.

The South Coast team defeated the Clarets 2-0 at Fratton Park thanks to a Hermann Hreidarsson strike and a late Dindane header.

Iceland international Hreidarsson fired Grant’s men ahead when he latched on to a superb pass from substitute Kanu, before finishing beautifully across Clarets goalkeeper Brian Jensen after 65 minutes.

Dindane then made the points safe after 83 minutes with a deadly downward header from Jamie O’Hara’s precision ball to the back post from the left.

But the Ivorian international had gone into the dressing room at half-time with boos ringing in his ears, following a disgraceful miss from 12 yards.

Pompey were handed a soft spot kick by referee Phil Dowd after 31 minutes when Burnley‘s Wade Elliott was wrongly adjudged to have felled Hreidarsson.

Dindane stepped up and lackadaisically passed his shot to Jensen’s right, allowing the Burnley goalkeeper to save comfortably.

However, Grant was pleased the striker raised his game after the break and came up trumps with a goal in the closing stages.

“One thing I try to teach my players is how to be players with character,” said Grant.

“This is most important and you need a short memory in football.

“You cannot come to half-time crying that you missed a penalty or didn’t play so well. You need to see what you can do better and that’s what Dindane did.

“He missed a penalty in the first half and then he worked harder in the second half than he did in the first. He deserved a goal.”

Kevin-Prince Boateng, one of Pompey‘s top performers throughout the game, has been taking the club’s spot kicks in recent weeks.

But Grant said he did not choose on-loan striker Dindane to take the penalty ahead of the Ghana international.

He added: “I have never in my life taken a decision about penalties.

“We have two players who can decide between them and we don’t have a penalty shooter here.

“Dindane missed so we can say ‘why not Boateng?’ But he missed two weeks ago and I read people saying on the paper ‘why not Dindane?’

“Maybe I’ll take the next penalty?”

Boateng and Dindane have both missed the spot in recent weeks, but Grant has no plans to order his kickers to practise penalties in training.

The former Chelsea boss, who lost the 2008 Champions League final to Manchester United in Moscow on penalties, added: “I can tell you that the best penalties I’ve seen taken were by a player who missed in Moscow.”

Meanwhile, Burnley boss Owen Coyle suggested Portsmouth should not been awarded their first-half spot kick.

But he refused to blame referee Dowd for his side’s downfall and said the incident had no effect on the outcome.

He said: “I was slightly surprised (it was awarded), I’ve got to say that, but it had absolutely no effect on the game.

“I’m loathed to criticise officials because if it was a mistake, it was a genuine mistake.

“That’s what happens and it had no bearing on the game.

“As disappointing as it is to lose the match, there is no blame attached to the officials.

“We were the architects of our own downfall.

“I’d like to think I’m honest in my assessment of matches and if we had taken our chances, we would have won the game.

“But we didn’t and we paid a heavy price – it’s as simple as that.”