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 boost promotion hopes
Pompey ran riot at Colchester to strengthen their position inside League Two’s top three.
It was a display of attacking supremacy from the Blues, who arguably deserved to win by more than the four-goal margin.
Eoin Doyle got the ball rolling during a first half that saw the visitors grow stronger as it progressed.
And they moved comfortably through the gears after the interval, as Kyle Bennett, Danny Rose and Michael Doyle all got in on the act.
Paul Cook stuck with the same side that comfortably beat Crawley earlier in the week.
But it was the hosts who made the brighter start and Brennan Dickenson did well down to the left, only to let himself down with the ball into the box.
Pompey soon began to settle and threaten going forward themselves, though, with some neat attacking play.
Eoin Doyle could not quite get on the end of an excellent Carl Baker cross, while a snap-shot from Kal Naismith was safely held by Colchester keeper Sam Walker.
Then when a cross was only partially dealt with by the United defence, Enda Stevens followed up with a volley that Walker was able to collect.
But the Blues did break the deadlock on 22 minutes, with Naismith sending the ball back into the box after his corner had been blocked and Eoin DOYLE heading home from close range.
He was not too far away from adding another soon after, but could not quite get on the end of Bennett’s near-post delivery.
And the on-loan Irishman then capitalised on some hesitancy by George Elokobi to deal with Stevens’ floated pass, only to send his shot over the bar.
Meanwhile, there was little to trouble the visitors at the other end of the pitch, as they comfortably held on to their lead at the break.
Colchester United 0
Colchester replaced Sammie Szmodics with Tarique Fosu at the interval in an attempt to improve their fortunes.
But instead Pompey found themselves further ahead just seconds after the restart – much to the delight of their large travelling army.
And it was BENNETT who doubled his tally for the week when, following good work down the right, Naismith selflessly squared for the winger to tuck home.
United came close to reducing their deficit moments later, but a stretching Chris Porter could not quite reach Dickenson’s cross.
But the Blues were still looking to get forward themselves and when Colchester switched off from a throw, Bennett picked the ball up and neatly side-stepped his man before blazing the shot wide.
Stevens then collected Naismith’s shot free-kick and beat a defender, only to see his arrowed drive deflected just past the post.
United were looking all at sea and it came as no surprise when Pompey extended their advantage further just past the hour mark.
Eoin Doyle did well to slide the ball through to ROSE, who saw his first shot blocked by Walker before neatly dinking home at the second attempt.
The keeper was almost caught out by Naismith moments later, but quickly back-pedalled to claw the ball clear.
Colchester had not created much at the other end and when they finally did get forward, it led to Pompey’s fourth goal.
The visitors broke quickly up the pitch from a corner, with Michael DOYLE surging forward to tuck away his first of the season after Naismith’s initial effort had been saved.
That was Naismith’s last bit of action, as he was immediately replaced by Noel Hunt, with Gary Roberts and Conor Chaplin joining him on the pitch soon after.
And there were no nerves in the closing stages as Pompey comfortably saw the game out to complete an enjoyable afternoon in Essex.
Colchester (4-2-3-1): Walker; Wright (Vincent-Young 66), James, Elokobi, Briggs; Garvan (Bonne 68), Lapslie; Murray, Szmodics (Fosu 46), Dickenson; Porter (c)
Subs not used: Barnes, Wynter, Kinsella, Pyke
Pompey (4-2-3-1): Forde; Evans, Burgess, Clarke, Stevens; Rose, M.Doyle (c); Baker, Naismith (Hunt 74), Bennett (Roberts 77); E.Doyle (Chaplin 84)
Goals: E.Doyle 22, Bennett 46, Rose 61, M.Doyle 73
Subs not used: O’Brien, T.Davies, Linganzi, Lowe
Referee: Darren England
Attendance: 6,504 (2,244 Pompey fans)
Pompey collected their first victory of the season thanks to a late Gary Roberts brace against Colchester.
The visitors did not offer much in attack, but looked like they might be leaving the south coast with a point after frustrating the Blues.
Roberts won and scored a penalty to relieve the tension, however, and then grabbed a second moments later to secure all three points.
Paul Cook made one change from the side that were beaten at Morecambe earlier in the week.
That came up front, where Michael Smith missed out completely and was replaced by Curtis Main.
The blustery conditions made things difficult for both sides early on, with several passes going astray.
But it was the Blues who settled the quickest and carved out the majority of the chances before the break.
The first of those arrived after six minutes when Roberts swung in a cross that Main flicked narrowly past the post.
Kyle Bennett then played a neat one-two with Roberts down the left, only to see his low delivery cleared by Doug Loft.
Pompey were dominating possession without really troubling United keeper Sam Walker and Carl Baker headed wide after being found in the box.
The hosts were winning plenty of corners, however, and one from Bennett caused a scramble in the box before eventually being hacked clear.
Despite being penned back in their own half, Colchester looked dangerous on the break, although David Forde was not exactly being overworked.
It was the Blues still doing most of the attacking, however, and they started to put more pressure on the opposition back-line as the break drew closer.
Their best chance came on 40 minutes and it was Roberts who once again started the move.
He cut the ball back for Main, but Walker made a fine save to keep out the striker’s shot and then used his feet to stop Danny Rose from converting the loose ball.
Colchester United 0
Pompey started the second half on the front foot and, with Main waiting to pounce, Walker had to quickly recover after fumbling Baker’s shot.
The keeper looked more assured moments later, however, when he gathered a Roberts cross-shot at his near post.
But the chances began to dry up and Cook attempted to inject some fresh impetus into proceedings with a double switch.
The crowd had been calling for Conor Chaplin and he was brought on alongside Noel Hunt, with Bennett and Main making way.
Walker immediately came for – and missed – a Roberts corner, but got away with it as there was no-one at the far post to capitalise.
Forde might have been a virtual spectator, but he had not let his concentration slip and made a key save on 70 minutes to deny Craig Slater.
Chaplin did well soon after, beating his man and chipping the ball up to the far post, where it was just out of reach for a stretching Baker.
But the Blues did finally break the deadlock on 80 minutes, thanks to a penalty that was won and converted by ROBERTS.
He was clearly tripped inside the box by Drey Wright before stepping up and sliding the ball straight down the middle.
And the Fratton faithful were soon celebrating a second goal when ROBERTS raced onto a fine pass from Chaplin.
He just about beat the onrushing Walker to the ball, which looped up and landed in the net to double the Blues’ advantage.
Colchester tried to find a route back into the game, but Forde made a decent double save to deny Chris Porter and Doug Loft late on and preserve the clean sheet.
Pompey (4-2-3-1): Forde; Talbot, Burgess, Barton, Stevens; Rose (Linganzi 86), Doyle (c); Baker, Roberts, Bennett (Hunt 62); Main (Chaplin 62)
Goals: Roberts 80 (pen), 84
Subs not used: O’Brien, T.Davies, Evans, Lalkovic
Colchester (4-2-3-1): Walker; Brindley, Eastman, Prosser (c), Kinsella; Lapslie, Loft; Guthrie (Wright 59), Slater (Bonne 82), Dickenson; Johnstone (Porter 71)
Booked: Guthrie, Kinsella
Subs not used: Bransgrove, Wynter, Vincent-Young, Szmodics
Referee: Charles Breakspear
Attendance: 15,967 (442 away fans)