Harrogate Town 1 Portsmouth 2: 'I thought we were on our way to an upset' - Mark Beck

Harrogate Town striker Mark Beck admits that he thought his early goal against Porstmouth was going to pave the way for an FA Cup giant killing.

Tuesday, 12th November 2019, 3:45 pm
Updated Tuesday, 12th November 2019, 3:52 pm
Harrogate Town striker Mark Beck caused Portsmouth plenty of problems during Monday night's FA Cup showdown. Picture: Getty Images

The big centre forward headed the National League underdogs into a seventh-minute lead, sparking scenes of jubilation around a packed CNG Stadium with the possibility of a genuine first-round upset suddenly very much on the cards.

Pompey were however level within 10 minutes and went on to win the game courtesy of Ronan Curtis' stunning long-range effort shortly before half-time.

"I couldn't really believe it when I ended up with a free header a few yards out," Beck said.

"Warren [Burrell] and Mullers [Jack Muldoon] worked it really well but I didn't expect the ball to reach me. There was a defender in the way but I think he missed his kick.

"I was buzzing to get the goal and I did feel like we would go on and win from there.

"It was brilliant to get everyone going inside the stadium and get us off to a good start. It felt like maybe they [Portsmouth] weren't ready for us or they underestimated us.

"In the end, I'm disappointed. After I scored, I thought we were on our way to an upset if I'm being honest."

As well as making a goal-scoring contribution, Beck was almost unplayable on the night, dominating the Portsmouth centre-halves on his way to picking up the sponsors' man of the match award.

And the 25-year-old said he was happy with his own contribution in front of the BT Sport cameras.

"I was pleased with how I did personally, but I think that the whole team played very well," he added.

"It was a really good test and I enjoyed the challenge. We did our research so I knew I'd be up against two big centre-backs. I expected a real tussle and that's what I got.

"I didn't prepare any differently to normal, but maybe because of the occasion you raise your game.

"If I want to progress in terms of my career then I guess that playing okay and doing well against two League One centre-backs in a televised FA Cup game isn't a bad place to start."