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STILL IN THE DRAW

Posted on 29 September 2006  - 12:00

Jermaine Jenas accepts the meeting with Slavia Prague did not prove to be a great spectacle, but insisted it is UEFA Cup progress that counts.

Jermaine Jenas accepts the meeting with Slavia Prague did not prove to be a great spectacle, but insisted it is UEFA Cup progress that counts.

Slavia seemingly came to frustrate and attempt to nick a goal on the break, but were thwarted by Robbie Keane's second half goal after seemingly winning a foothold in the game.

"We knew how important a game it was for us and the vital thing was to get through to the group stage and we've done that," reasoned the midfielder.

"If we could have got an earlier goal I think the game would have been completely different and we could have built a good score.

"Fair play to them, they didn't just sit off and tried to cause us some problems, but Keano nicked a goal for us and a lot of people seemed to settle down and play," added JJ who denied suffering any feelings of anxiety as the clock ticked towards the latter stages.

"Not really, I didn't see them scoring. They had a few long range efforts but I was fully confident in Robbo in dealing with that. I thought it was just a matter of time before we were going to score."

Meanwhile, JJ was not about to make any excuses for his miss up at Liverpool at the weekend that altered the course of the game. His energetic display against the Czechs was his way of moving on from the disappointment.

"I should have put it away, but I have put it behind me now. I am staying positive and I think I showed it in my performance," he added, before looking ahead to Sunday's meeting with Portsmouth at the Lane where he states that continued improvement is key.

"We've just got to keep improving and I'm sure the goals will go in for the strikers like it did for Keano.

"Portsmouth have always been a tough side, but for them to be right up there has possibly surprised a few people. They've invested some money in experienced players and deserve to be where they are right now."

They didn't get the best of results on Monday so they will be looking to come here and get a result as well