Riise display pleases Cotterill

It was a heart-breaking Pompey introduction for Bjorn Helge Riise.

Steve Cotterill, however, remained encouraged by the Norwegian international’s Blues debut.

The Fulham man only arrived on an emergency loan on Monday.

The following day he was thrown a Fratton Park start in the clash with Peterborough.

Operating on the right-hand side of midfield, Riise produced a busy and hard-working display.

It was his first start since lining up for Norway against Portugal in a European Championship qualifier this summer.

Regardless, there were certainly reasons for Pompey fans to feel optimistic over his presence.

The 28-year-old was substituted in the 85th minute in favour of Kanu as Cotterill looked to grab a victory.

In the end, international compatriot Erik Huseklepp settled matters in stoppage time when he put the ball through his own net to seal a 3-2 defeat.

Now Riise is in the frame to retain his place for Saturday’s trip to Leeds, after Cotterill paid tribute to his Fratton Park display.

He said: ‘I thought Bjorn worked very hard, to be fair to him.

‘It took him a little while to settle in but I think he got through an enormous amount of work.

‘It was tough for him, he hasn’t done enough training with the lads just yet.

‘Just at the end we just felt maybe that, with the freshness of Kanu, he may find a pass.

‘A couple of times he nearly did it for us to get maybe a winner.

‘But I thought Bjorn worked his socks off, as they all did.

‘He was part of a good team performance.’

Riise has made 35 appearances for Fulham since arriving from Lillestrom in the summer of 2009.

Yet just five of those have been Premier League starts.

He moved on an emergency loan deal to Sheffield United at the tail end of last season.

It was a 13-match spell during which he largely impressed Bramall Lane supporters.

The 31-capped international will now spend the next 93 days at Fratton Park under terms of his emergency loan.

He is currently the only player Pompey have taken on loan so far this season.