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Gomes 'fantastic' - Harry

Posted on 17 October 2009  - 12:00

Harry Redknapp reserved special praise for Heurelho Gomes after our 2-1 win at Portsmouth on Saturday.

Harry Redknapp reserved special praise for Heurelho Gomes after our 2-1 win at Portsmouth on Saturday.

The keeper made three saves right out of the top drawer at Fratton Park including a breathtaking stop from ex-Spur Younes Kaboul in the first half.

Back in for Carlo Cudicini after injury, Gomes, already diving to his right, somehow threw his left hand up to divert the ball away after Kaboul's fierce strike deflected off Tommy Smith.

The scoreline was still goalless at that point but we soon led via Ledley King's header and took a 2-0 advantage into half-time when Jermain Defoe converted Jermaine Jenas' cross.

Gomes was at his best to claw away Smith's lob and after Kevin-Prince Boateng had pulled a goal back, produced his third stunning save to keep out Hassen Yebda's close-range volley.

Jermain Defoe was sent off between those saves but the 10 men fought hard to hold onto the three points.

"Gomes was absolutely fantastic," said Harry. "When he first joined the club, Tony Adams (then with Harry at Portsmouth) told me that Spurs had signed one of the best keepers in the world. Tony knew him from his days in Holland.

"When I took over at Tottenham it didn't look that way but he's really looked the part since then.

"He came back from injury against Preston in the Carling Cup and he was even better than that and in training he's looked great as well.

"It was a hard decision to leave Carlo out because he's done well but Gomes is fit again and he was terrific for us, a top, top goalkeeper."

Gomes

Harry admitted the combination of Pompey's second half show and Jermain's sending off made for a tough last half-hour.

"In the first half Portsmouth had the one great chance when Dindane should have scored, that was a great opportunity for them, but when we went 2-0 up at half-time there really looked one winner," he added.

"But they came back strong. They showed terrific spirit, character, kept going and worked their socks off.

"The crowd got behind them as they always do and made it a difficult second half. Defoe's sending off made it even more difficult for us.

"We were hanging on at the end," he said. "I brought Michael Dawson on in the end and went with three centre-halves. It was a case of just surviving."