Gavin Bazunu (Image: Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images)
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Ireland stopper Gavin Bazunu has been backed to recover from a rare mistake in Portsmouth's 4-1 defeat to Rotherham on Saturday.
With the game poised at 1-1 at the New York Stadium, the 19-year-old badly fumbled a long-range strike.
From the resulting scramble Michael Smith found the net to set Rotherham on their way to a convincing victory.
It was a humbling moment for Bazunu after a near-flawless rise from League of Ireland football with Shamrock Rovers to a high-profile move to Manchester City and a string of starts for Ireland since going out on loan.
But his manager at League One side Portsmouth, Danny Crowley, was quick to defend the young keeper.
Crowley said: "Gavin (Bazunu) is a young player, goalies will make mistakes no matter what age they are. He’s been brilliant for us. He makes a mistake, but it is the response off the back of that that is disappointing for me.
"I just thought we went under. We didn’t show anywhere near the durability and the resilience you need to show in that moment of disappointment. It wasn’t our time to score but a bad time to concede but these things will happen. You have to overcome this."
This is Bazunu's second season in the third tier of English football after a year-long loan spell at Rochdale last season.
And Crowley doesn't believe that the Dubliner will let one blunder affect his confidence.
Bazunu saved a Cristiano Ronaldo penalty in a World Cup qualifier this year
(Image: ©INPHO/Ryan Byrne)
Crowley added: "He’s been excellent. Good team-mates dig their mates out of difficult moments.
"When you make a mistake, you are hoping that they are going to go and respond for him but we weren’t able to find the inspiration to do that.
"He’s a boy who is incredibly focused, very, very professional, got an unbelievable mindset and made a mistake. He’ll get over it.
"He is a tough boy and he’s on a pathway to success, there is absolutely no doubt about that. This won’t be the first mistake he makes and it won’t be the last. That is for sure."
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