Football

Sep 162017
 

League One

4 – 1


Brett Pitman and Jamal Lowe each bagged a brace as Pompey outclassed Fleetwood at Fratton Park.

The skipper opened the scoring with a brave header, only for Devante Cole to impressively level early in the second half.

Lowe then took over, restoring the lead with a header before somehow finding the net from an acute angle.

And it was Pitman – sporting a bandaged nose from his earlier exploits – who curled home a fine fourth to wrap up the points.

A miserable afternoon for the visitors was wrapped up late on when Kyle Dempsey was dismissed for a second bookable offence.

Kenny Jackett made one change from the side beaten at Northampton earlier in the week.

It came in the centre of midfield, where Adam May dropped out of the squad to be replaced by Ben Close.

The visitors had an early chance when Cian Bolger came forward for a George Glendon corner and headed narrowly over.

But the Blues were inches away from breaking the deadlock themselves moments later, with Pitman doing well to connect with Lowe’s pass and scooping the ball just past the post.

It was otherwise a slow start to proceedings, though, with little in the way of goalmouth action to excite the crowd.

Damien McCrory’s afternoon came to an abrupt end on 21 minutes when the defender limped off to be replaced by Dion Donohue.

And the newcomer bent a shot just off target from 20 yards after Matty Kennedy had found him with a corner.

But Pompey did forge ahead just before the break when Nathan Thompson crossed from the right and PITMAN arrived at the far post to head home.

The price was a bloodied nose, which saw the Blues skipper disappear down the tunnel for treatment and re-emerge with a new numberless shirt.


Half Time

(1 – 0)


There was a fairly pedestrian start to the second half, but Cole brought the contest to life with a fantastic leveller on 52 minutes.

He was teed-up by Lewie Coyle and unleashed a superb half-volleyed strike that left Luke McGee helpless.

Pitman tried to hit back at the other end of the pitch, although his 25-yard drive was comfortable for Alex Cairns between the Cod Army sticks.

But the Blues did restore their advantage on 57 minutes after Kennedy’s effort had been deflected behind for a corner.

LOWE had spoken earlier in the week about never having scored with his head, but arrived at the far post to nod in Donohue’s corner.

Fleetwood were still a threat, though, and Cole’s shot squirted narrowly wide following a quick break up the pitch.

Dempsey then slid a pass through to Conor McAleny, who should at least have tested McGee with his effort.

And the visitors were made to pay for their profligacy on 70 minutes, thanks to a fine individual effort from LOWE.

He collected the ball from Conor Chaplin and burst into the box before finding the target with fierce finish from the tightest of angles.

And any doubts about the outcome vanished soon after, as PITMAN curled home an exquisite shot that stroked the inside of the post on its way into the net.

It soon went from bad to worse for Fleetwood, as Dempsey’s clumsy challenge on substitute Gareth Evans earned him a second yellow card – and subsequent red – from referee Dean Whitestone.

Pitman then made way for Oliver Hawkins and was afforded a standing ovation from the Fratton faithful as he trooped off.

And there were more cheers when the final whistle blew a few minutes later to confirm a thoroughly deserved Blues victory.

Pompey (4-2-3-1): McGee; Thompson, Burgess, Clarke, McCrory (Donohue 21); O’Keefe, Close; Lowe, Pitman (c) (Hawkins 86), Kennedy; Chaplin (Evans 74)
Goals: Pitman 40, 78, Lowe 57, 70
Subs not used: Bass, Talbot, Naismith, Main

Fleetwood (3-5-2): Cairns; Bolger (Cargill 59), Pond (c), Eastham; Coyle, O’Neill (McAleny 46), Glendon, Dempsey, Bell; Cole, Hiwula (Hunter 72)
Goals: Cole 52
Sent off: Dempsey (two yellow cards)
Booked: Bolger
Subs not used: Neal, Ekpolo, Grant, Burns

Referee: Dean Whitestone

Attendance: 17,192 (115 away fans)

Portsmouth FC

Sep 122017
 

League One

3 – 1


Pompey’s inconsistent start to the season continued as they were beaten 3-1 by Northampton at a sodden Sixfields Stadium.

The visitors were well below-par in the first half and trailed to a Chris Long strike and Matt Clarke’s unfortunate own-goal.

But they dominated after the break and Matty Kennedy deservedly pulled one back, with several more chances to level the game soon following.

A healthy travelling support were not able to celebrate a leveller, however, and Long netted again for the hosts to wrap up victory for the Cobblers.

Kenny Jackett made one enforced change from the side that won at AFC Wimbledon three days earlier.

Oliver Hawkins suffered a nasty head wound in that fixture and was replaced up front by Conor Chaplin.

A mixture of driving rain and strong winds made conditions difficult for both sets of players throughout the contest.

Pompey carved out a couple of half-chances in the early stages before Kennedy curled a 20-yard effort narrowly over the bar.

But it was the hosts who almost broke the deadlock on 15 minutes, with Matt Grimes’ free-kick causing confusion between Luke McGee and Clarke before eventually swinging out of play.

It was only a brief respite for the Blues, however, as the Cobblers did forge ahead just a few moments later.

Shaun McWilliams slipped a fine pass through to Long and although McGee came off his line to narrow the angle, the striker neatly slotted home.

Unfortunately, McWilliams’ evening was soon cut short, as he went down injured and had to be stretchered from the pitch.

That did not stop the Cobblers’ charge, though, and some poor defending allowed them to double their advantage on 32 minutes.

Grimes delivered a free-kick from wide on the right and no Pompey player was able to get it clear, with the helpless Clarke only able to turn the ball into his own net at the far post.

It seemed to stun the Blues into action and they had a few opportunities to reduce the deficit before the interval.

Northampton almost provided a helping hand when Ash Taylor diverted Jamal Lowe’s cross against his own post.

Stuart O’Keefe then tried a long-range effort deep into stoppage-time that Matt Ingram did well to tip over the bar.


Half Time

(2 – 0)


Pompey had been poor before the break, but whatever Jackett told them during the interval seemed to do the trick.

They came roaring out of the blocks and soon reduced the deficit when O’Keefe teed-up KENNEDY for a fine finish into the bottom corner.

Adam May then had an effort deflected over before Lowe arrived at the far post to head Damien McCrory’s cross just past the post.

The Blues kept pouring forward and Brett Pitman received the ball inside the box, only for some decent Cobblers defending to prevent him getting a shot away.

Lowe then had another excellent opportunity to draw the visitors level, as there was time for him to bring Kennedy’s cross under control before a wild shot that flew wide.

Jackett made his first switch of the evening just before the hour mark, as May made way for Ben Close in midfield.

Lowe seemed to be involved in everything that was happening and soon after being booked for a foul on Daniel Powell, his low centre was deflected into the arms of a grateful Ingram.

It was pretty much one-way traffic and when McCrory’s free-kick was only partially cleared, Kennedy sent the ball back into the box, where it was turned wide by Chaplin.

But rising hopes were dashed on 70 minutes when Northampton scored against the run of play to strengthen their advantage.

There was some good work on the right by Brendan Moloney and Crooks, with the latter’s cross flicked on by Alex Revell for Long to lash home his second of the night.

Pompey, to their credit, kept trying to get the ball into their opponents’ box, but the Cobblers were holding firm at the back.

They forged a decent opening late on, however, when McCrory whipped a fine free-kick into the box, where Christian Burgess’ header was kept out by Ingram.

And the keeper made an even better stop on 87 minutes, flinging himself to the right to palm clear O’Keefe’s cleanly-struck attempt and ensure there was no late drama.

Northampton (4-4-2): Ingram; Moloney, Taylor, Pierre, Buchanan (c); Crooks, McWilliams (Kasim 29), Grimes, Smith (Powell 56); Revell (Richards 78), Long
Goals: Long 18, 70, Clarke 32 (og)
Subs not used: Cornell, Barnett, Poole, Waters

Pompey (4-2-3-1): McGee; Thompson, Burgess, Clarke, McCrory; May (Close 57), O’Keefe; Lowe, Pitman (c), Kennedy; Chaplin
Goals: Kennedy 49
Booked: Thompson, Clarke, Lowe
Subs not used: Bass, Talbot, Donohue, Bennett, Naismith, Main

Referee: Darren Drysdale

Attendance: 5,855 (1,153 Pompey fans)

Portsmouth FC

Sep 092017
 

League One

0 – 2


Goals from Brett Pitman and Conor Chaplin helped Pompey secure their first away victory of the season against AFC Wimbledon.

It was Pitman who broke the deadlock in the first half at Kingsmeadow after first winning and then converting a penalty.

Chaplin came off the bench immediately following the interval and took just five minutes to wrap the points up.

Kenny Jackett made three changes from the side narrowly beaten at home by Rotherham the previous week.

Damien McCrory was handed a debut at left-back, while there were first starts for both Matty Kennedy and Nathan Thompson.

Chaplin dropped to the bench, while there was no place in the matchday squad for Brandon Haunstrup or the injured Jack Whatmough.

There was also a change of system, with the wing-backs dropped in favour of a more familiar four-man defensive line.

AFC Wimbledon included a couple of familiar names in their line-up, giving starts to former Fratton stars Paul Robinson and Andy Barcham.

A large grey cloud made its way ominously across the sky as the first half progressed, although the action on the pitch was fairly sedate to start with.

There were a couple of half-chances, but certainly nothing of note as both keepers enjoyed a watching brief.

Barcham did enjoy a surging run through the Blues back-line, only to end the move with a wild effort that flew over the bar.

Matty Kennedy then did well to pick out Pitman in the box, but the visiting skipper had strayed narrowly offside.

It was midway through the first period when the first noteworthy opportunity finally arrived, as Dean Parrett curled a shot narrowly past the post.

Adam May was slightly more off target at the other end of the pitch, with his effort on the bounce clearing the stadium.

Pompey threatened more on 31 minutes following some great work by Jamal Lowe to beat his man down the right.

But Pitman slipped at the worst possible moment before recovering and seeing a shot deflected just off target.

The resulting corner was swung in by McCrory and led to an almighty scramble, with Matt Clarke eventually poking wide.

It was the visitors who broke the deadlock on 38 minutes, however, after Pitman was pushed to the ground by Barry Fuller.

Referee Kevin Johnson immediately pointed to the spot and PITMAN dusted himself down to confidently send George Long the wrong way.

A stretching Oliver Hawkins was then only able to send the ball into the keeper’s arms following some good build-up from Kennedy and Lowe.

The home fans were left angry by a couple of challenges just before the break, feeling that Pitman should have been punished for a clash with Robinson that left the defender with a large gash on its head.

There was then a nasty collision between Hawkins and Callum Kennedy that resulted in both players sprawled on the turf.

Johnson decided to blow for half-time and Pompey’s striker was left bandaged and covered in blood, while the Wimbledon full-back had to be stretchered off.


Half Time

(0 – 1)


A large flash of lightning and clap of thunder meant that the start of the second half had to be delayed for a few minutes.

Hawkins, unsurprisingly, was not present when the sides did emerge, with Chaplin on to replace him up front.

And it was CHAPLIN who doubled the advantage just five minutes after the restart, showing typical predatory instincts to capitalise on Anthony Hartigan’s fluffed clearance and slot home.

Another substitute almost reduced the Dons’ deficit at the other end, though, with Luke McGee doing just enough to put off Lyle Taylor as he bore down on goal.

Wimbledon were trying to find a route back into the game and Christian Burgess headed George Francomb’s cross clear, while McCrory’s block kept out Taylor’s follow-up.

But the Blues almost extended their lead on 68 minutes, with a powerful free-kick from Pitman superbly kept out by Long.

The visitors were comfortably holding onto their advantage, although Harry Forrester bundled his way into space before McCrory cleared the danger.

Pompey had understandably tempered their ambitions, although an audacious 35-yard lob from May had to be tipped over by a back-pedalling Long.

The hosts’ day soon got even worse when Burgess attempted an over-head kick and inadvertently caught Robinson.

It was clearly accidental and Burgess was booked, but the defender had to go off and the Dons had already made all three of their substitutions.

But, in truth, a comeback always looked unlikely for Wimbledon, as Pompey comfortably saw out the closing stages to secure all three points.

AFC Wimbledon (4-3-3): Long; Fuller (c), Robinson, Nightingale, Kennedy (Hartigan 46); Parrett (Forrester 57), Francomb, Trotter; Appiah, McDonald, Barcham (Taylor 57)
Subs not used: McDonnell, Sibbick, Kalambayi, Kaja

Pompey (4-2-3-1): McGee; Thompson, Burgess, Clarke, McCrory; May, O’Keefe; Lowe, Pitman (c), Kennedy (Bennett 67); Hawkins (Chaplin 46)
Goals: Pitman 38 (pen), Chaplin 50
Booked: O’Keefe, Kennedy, Burgess
Subs not used: Bass, Talbot, Close, Donohue, Naismith

Referee: Kevin Johnson

Attendance: 4,585 (786 Pompey fans)

Portsmouth FC

Sep 032017
 

League One

0 – 1


Pompey suffered their first home defeat since March, as Rotherham left Fratton Park with all three points.

Jon Taylor netted the only goal during the first half of a televised contest that improved as it went on.

The Blues were much better after the break, but were unable to convert any of the numerous chances they carved out.

Kenny Jackett made four changes from the side that drew at Wigan the previous week.

He handed debuts to Stuart O’Keefe and Oliver Hawkins, while fellow deadline day signings Damien McCrory and Matty Kennedy had to be content with a place on the bench.

Matt Clarke returned from the groin injury that had kept him sidelined since pre-season and there was also a start for Conor Chaplin.

That saw a switch to a 3-4-1-2 system, with Brandon Haunstrup and Jamal Lowe occupying the wide roles, and skipper Brett Pitman playing behind Chaplin and Hawkins.

The rain was falling heavily when the game got underway and the action on the pitch was doing little to brighten the mood.

It was a fairly lethargic opening to proceedings, with both sides struggling to keep hold of the ball, perhaps hindered by the wet conditions.

The first chance fell for the hosts, though, and Pitman ran at the Rotherham defence, beat his man and fired narrowly over the bar.

But the Millers soon threatened themselves, with Michael Ihiekwe failing to find the target before O’Keefe bravely blocked Lee Frecklington’s effort.

Kieffer Moore than tried his luck from the edge of the box, but could not make a clean connection and the ball bobbled safely into Luke McGee’s arms.

There were not too many clear-cut openings, but the Blues did have opportunites to break the deadlock.

Haunstrup saw a shot deflected past the post after meeting Adam May’s delivery, while Hawkins’ long-range attempt only flew narrowly wide.

Instead it was Rotherham who took the lead on 36 minutes, as Taylor latched onto a ball down the right and lashed home a powerful strike.

Pompey immediately set about trying to find a leveller and Clarke failed to divert Chaplin’s corner on target.

A superb cross Haunstrup cross from wide on the left was then headed over by Lowe, as the hosts went in behind at the break.


Half Time

(0 – 1)


Jackett made a change of personnel and system for the start of the second half, with a return to four at the back.

Jack Whatmough and Chaplin both failed to emerge from the tunnel and were replaced by debutants Nathan Thompson and Kennedy.

And the latter made in instant impression with a cross that Millers keeper Richard O’Donnell could not get to.

The ball landed at the feet of Lowe at the far post and he took a touch before sending in a low drive that was deflected behind.

Pompey fans were baying for a penalty when Hawkins took a boot to the face on 57 minutes, although referee Gavin Ward was not interested.

There was then a lighter moment just past the mark, as Pitman and Kennedy both tried to keep the ball in play and the former ended up taking out the latter!

The hosts were looking much more dangerous than before the break and when a bandaged Hawkins met May’s free-kick, his header had to be cleared from the line by Darren Potter.

Jackett made a final throw of the dice on 70 minutes, with Hawkins given a generous ovation as he made way for Kal Naismith.

But the Scottish forward was getting patched up on the sidelines following a challenge with O’Donnell when the Blues came close to levelling on 79 minutes.

It was a dangerous low ball into the box from a slightly out-of-position Clarke, but a stretching Lowe could not quite make a connection at the far post.

Pompey poured forward in the closing stages, which were played out almost entirely in Rotherham’s half.

And the display of six additional minutes gave the Fratton faithful hope of salvaging something, but the visitors held on for victory.

Pompey (3-4-1-2): McGee; Burgess, Whatmough (Thompson 46), Clarke; Lowe, May, O’Keefe, Haunstrup; Pitman (c); Chaplin (Kennedy 46), Hawkins (Naismith 70)
Booked: Burgess
Subs not used: Bass, McCrory, Close, Donohue

Rotherham (4-2-3-1): O’Donnell; Cummings, Ihiekwe, Wood, Purrington; Potter, Vaulks; Williams (Forde 54), Frecklington (c) (Towell 90+1), Taylor (Newell 85); Moore
Goals: Taylor 36
Booked: Potter, Purrington, Vaulks
Subs not used: Bilboe, Ajayi, Clarke-Harris, Ball

Referee: Gavin Ward

Attendance: 17,118 (436 away fans)

Portsmouth FC

Aug 312017
 

Matty Kennedy

Loan : Cardiff City – Portsmouth



Pompey have signed Matty Kennedy from Cardiff on a season-long loan deal, subject to international clearance.

The Scottish winger becomes the fourth deadline day arrival at Fratton Park, following the captures of Oliver Hawkins, Stuart O’Keefe and Damien McCrory.

Blues boss Kenny Jackett said: “Matty’s a very skilful attacking midfielder with the great ability to go past players.

“He also has a good record of assists and will be able to provide for our strikers with quality crosses.

“He played against us in the Carabao Cup and produced an impressive performance, so I’m sure he’ll be a very effective player for us.”

Kennedy began his career with Kilmarnock and had a spell at Everton before signing for Cardiff in February 2015.

He appeared in three games for the Welsh outfit this season – including August’s cup clash – and has represented Scotland up to under-21 level.

Portsmouth FC

Aug 312017
 

Nicke Kabamba

Loan : Portsmouth – Colchester United



Nicke Kabamba has joined Colchester on loan until January.

The 24-year-old striker has made six appearances since joining Pompey from Hampton & Richmond in January.

Blues boss Kenny Jackett said: “In terms of League football he’s still very young.

“This move gives him the opportunity to play some senior games and continue his route towards the Pompey first team.”

Portsmouth FC

Aug 312017
 

Damien McCrory

Loan : Burton Albion – Portsmouth



Pompey have signed Damien McCrory on loan from Burton until January.

The 27-year-old Irishman is primarily a left-back, but can also be utilised in a more advanced position.

Blues boss Kenny Jackett said: “He’s an experienced player who provides competition for Brandon Haunstrup in that role.

“It’s a specialist position and we’ve been looking to bring someone in since Tareiq Holmes-Dennis’ unfortunate injury on the opening day.

“He’s won promotion from this division before and has also played in the Championship, so we’re delighted to bring him in on loan.”

McCrory started his career at Plymouth and enjoyed a successful stint with Dagenham before joining Burton in 2012.

He has made almost 200 appearances for the Brewers and represented Republic of Ireland at youth level.

Portsmouth FC

Aug 312017
 

Michael Smith

Released



Portsmouth Football Club can confirm that Michael Smith has left the club by mutual consent.

The striker netted 10 goals in his 37 appearances for the Blues after arriving – initially on loan – in February 2016.

Three of those came in League Two last term, with a crucial equaliser at Cheltenham that helped secure the title.

Smith also bagged a hat-trick at Yeovil in a 4-3 group stage defeat in the Checkatrade Trophy.

Michael Smith subsequently signed for Bury

Portsmouth FC

Aug 312017
 

Stuart O’Keefe

Loan : Cardiff City – Portsmouth



Pompey have signed midfielder Stuart O’Keefe from Cardiff on a season-long loan, subject to international clearance.

The 26-year-old has previously helped Crystal Palace win promotion from the Championship and featured for them in the Premier League.

Blues boss Kenny Jackett said: “We’re very pleased to bring Stuart in for the rest of the season.

“He brings experience and aggression into our midfield and will complement the young ball-playing guys in that area of the pitch.”

O’Keefe progressed through the ranks at Southend before joining the Eagles and then arriving at Cardiff in 2015.

He has scored twice in 45 appearances for the Welsh club and appeared against Pompey in the Carabao Cup earlier this season.

Portsmouth FC

Aug 312017
 

Oliver Hawkins

Transfer : Dagenham and Redbridge – Portsmouth



Pompey have signed Oliver Hawkins from Dagenham & Redbridge.

The towering 25-year-old striker has arrived for an undisclosed fee and penned a three-year deal at Fratton Park.

Blues boss Kenny Jackett said: “We’re really pleased to get Oliver over the line and I’m looking forward to working with him.

“He’s someone I’ve watched for a long time and is capable of stepping out of non-league and doing well for us, complementing the players we’ve already got.

“He will obviously add some physicality to our squad. He holds the ball up and is a big threat in the box – in fact he’s useful in both boxes.”

Hawkins started his career with North Greenford United and enjoyed prolific spells with Hillingdon Borough, Northwood and Hemel Hempstead before signing for Dagenham in January 2016.

He netted 18 goals for the Daggers in the National League last season, including hat-tricks against Wrexham and Solihull.

Portsmouth FC