Nov 212017
 

League One


 

Peterborough United    2

 


 

Portsmouth    1

 


Pompey’s winning run was brought to an end with a 2-1 defeat to Peterborough at London Road.

It was a fairly even contest, but a couple of fine deliveries from Marcus Maddison ultimately proved the difference.

The Posh midfielder provided the assist for Jack Marriott to open the scoring and then saw his free-kick headed into his own net by Matt Clarke.

Conor Chaplin came off the bench to pull a goal back for the Blues, but they were unable to find a leveller.

Kenny Jackett made two changes from the side that beat Southend at Fratton Park on Saturday.

Curtis Main made his second league start of the season in place of Brett Pitman, who missed out with a hamstring injury.

Matty Kennedy also returned in an attacking role wide on the left, with Kyle Bennett dropping to the bench.

But it was Jamal Lowe on the opposite flank who caused the hosts plenty of problems in the early stages.

One promising move saw him surge half the length of the pitch and whip in a cross that was met by Kal Naismith and deflected past the post.

And Naismith was then left alone at the far post to head stand-in skipper Gareth Evans’ corner back across goal, although the Posh defence were able to hack clear.

Peterborough soon began to settle, however, and dominate possession without creating too much of note.

They did go close on 18 minutes when Danny Lloyd threaded a pass through to Gwion Edwards, who lifted the ball over Luke McGee and against the crossbar.

Then, after Ben Close’s effort had been blocked, United charged straight down the other end and McGee – who along with Christian Burgess was facing his former club – palmed behind Maddison’s deflected effort.

But it was Pompey’s turn to threaten more towards the end of the first half and a fierce attempt from Main clipped the outside of the post.

There was one sensational cross-field pass from Oliver Hawkins to pick out Kennedy on the left, although the winger cross was claimed by keeper Conor O’Malley and the sides went in level at the break.


Half Time

(0 – 0)


The opening to the second half was also a pretty cagey affair, with little action to get either of the goalkeepers’ gloves dirty.

Maddison’s free-kick – given for a foul on the edge of the box by Kennedy – was headed clear by Main.

The striker was then involved at the other end of the pitch, sliding in but unable to make contact with Naismith’s teasing low delivery.

Naismith soon had a chance of his own and finally forced O’Malley into a meaningful save with a powerfully-struck effort from the edge of the box.

But it was Peterborough who finally broke the deadlock just before the hour mark when Maddison sent in a low cross from the left and Marriott arrived to bundle the ball home.

Jackett responded by making his first substitution, as the hard-working Main made way for Chaplin in attack.

It was Posh looking more likely to add to the scoring, however, and Hawkins had to turn one effort just past his own post, while Steven Taylor fired narrowly over from a corner.

But they needed a helping hand to double their advantage on 70 minutes after Burgess had been booked for a foul on Maddision.

It was the midfielder who dusted himself down to take the free-kick, which was inadvertently turned into his own net by Clarke.

Chaplin almost reduced the deficit soon after, although his miskicked shot was cleared from the line by a well-placed Anthony Grant.

But CHAPLIN did find the target on 78 minutes, sliding the ball into the net after O’Malley could only parry clear Danny Rose’s effort.

There were a few nerves starting to show for Peterborough as they tried to hang on to their now slender lead.

But for all of Pompey’s attacking intent, they were unable to test O’Malley again as time ran out in the search for a point.

Peterborough (3-5-2): O’Malley; Baldwin (c), Taylor, Tafazolli (Hughes 46); Lopes, Grant, Maddison (Anderson 85), Doughty, Edwards; Marriott, Lloyd
Goals: Marriott 58, Clarke 70 (og)
Booked: Grant, Edwards
Subs not used: Bond, Penny, Forrester, Kanu, Miller

Pompey (4-2-3-1): McGee; Evans (c), Hawkins, Burgess, Clarke; Close, Rose; Lowe, Naismith, Kennedy (Donohue 81); Main (Chaplin 64)
Goals: Chaplin 78
Booked: Burgess
Subs not used: Bass, Thompson, O’Keefe, May, Bennett

Referee: Craig Hicks

Attendance: 5,217 (841 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

Aug 262017
 

League One

1 – 1


Chaplin to the rescue

Conor Chaplin came off the bench to rescue a point for Pompey at promotion favourites Wigan.

It did not look a likely outcome when Ivan Toney fired the hosts ahead early in the contest and they then dominated the rest of the first half.

The Latics hit the woodwork on three occasions, but Chey Dunkley’s red card turned the tide in the Blues’ favour.

And Chaplin’s header ensured that the noisy travelling faithful had plenty to cheer on the long trip home, despite Gareth Evans also being dismissed late on.

Kenny Jackett made three changes from the side that drew with Walsall the previous week.

Dion Donohue was handed a debut wide on the left, with Jamal Lowe returning from suspension to lead the line and Kyle Bennett also given a recall.

Kal Naismith dropped to the bench, while there was no place in the squad for Milan Lalkovic or the injured Drew Talbot.

Wigan immediately showed why they are the favourites for League One promotion and it took just eight minutes for them to break the deadlock.

Nick Powell threaded a pass through to Gavin Massey and he slid the ball across the face of goal for Toney to tap home from close range.

That failed to temper the hosts’ attacking intent and the only surprise at half-time was that they failed to extend their advantage.

It was a combination of Luke McGee and the woodwork that came to Pompey’s rescue to limit the damage.

The keeper made a fine save with his feet to deny Toney a second when the striker looked to convert a dangerous Massey delivery.

Reece James then teed-up Powell, whose fierce strike cannoned back off the crossbar on 22 minutes.

The Blues had created little at the other end of the pitch, with an uncharacteristic heavy touch from Brett Pitman denying him a shooting opportunity.

Wigan, by contrast, were looking dangerous with every attack and Christian Burgess did well to block Samy Morsy’s effort after the midfielder had initially given him the slip.

Pompey did provide more of a threat towards the end of the half and when Evans’ met a Donohue free-kick, his downwards header had to be scrambled clear.

A couple of corners also caused the Latics problems, but although Christian Walton flapped at one, they both ultimately came to nothing.

Paul Cook would have enjoyed seeing his new side dominate his old one, although that failed to stop Wigan’s boss berating the fourth official for some perceived poor refereeing decisions.

And he had more reason to moan when Toney, under pressure from Evans, could only turn Massey’s cross against the post.

The hosts looked like they would grab a second before the break, with Lee Evans’ strike heading for the net until a diving McGee managed to palm it behind.


Half Time

(0 – 1)


It had been virtually one-way traffic before the break, but the Blues came close to levelling just 56 seconds after the restart.

Brandon Haunstrup sent the ball into the box from wide on the left, only for Lowe to turn it wide from close range.

Wigan were soon back on the attack, however, and McGee was at his best once more to keep out Michael Jacobs’ fiercely-struck attempt.

The keeper then failed to hold another effort from the same player, but was quickly able to smother the loose ball.

Jackett made a double switch on 53 minutes in an attempt to spark a reversal of fortunes, with Donohue and Danny Rose withdrawn for Naismith and Ben Close.

And a Wigan player was also departing soon after – although there was nobody coming on to replace Dunkley.

The centre-back lashed out at Pitman off the ball and referee Robert Jones had no choice but to brandish a red card.

But it was the Latics who almost scored again on 69 minutes, with the post coming to Pompey’s rescue once more when an effort from substitute Terell Thomas beat McGee’s grasp.

The Blues were trying to make their numerical advantage count, but were finding it difficult to test Walton.

There was an equaliser for the large travelling support to cheer on 76 minutes, however.

Haunstrup swung in a fine cross from wide on the left and CHAPLIN – who had only just been brought on – deftly nodded it home.

It almost got even better for the visitors soon after, but Walton just about got down quick enough to palm clear Adam May’s daisy-cutter.

There were still chances at the other end, though, and Will Grigg should have done better than divert his far-post header straight into McGee’s arms.

But the Blues also had to play out the closing stages with 10 men when Evans’ foul earned him a second booking of the afternoon.

The fourth official’s display of six additional minutes spurred the home side on in their search for a winner.

But Pompey were able to see that out to secure a point and end Wigan’s 100 per cent start to the League One campaign.

Wigan (4-2-3-1): Walton; Byrne, Dunkley, Burn, James; Evans, Morsy (c); Massey (Colclough 83), Powell (Grigg 73), Jacobs; Toney (Thomas 61)
Goals: Toney 8
Sent off: Dunkley
Subs not used: Jones, Perkins, Gilbey, Hunt

Pompey (4-2-3-1): McGee; Evans, Burgess, Whatmough, Haunstrup; May, Rose (Close 53); Bennett (Chaplin 73), Pitman (c), Donohue (Naismith 53); Lowe
Goals: Chaplin 76
Sent off: Gareth Evans (two yellow cards)
Booked: Donohue, Pitman, Whatmough
Subs not used: Bass, Thompson, Davies, Kabamba

Referee: Robert Jones

Attendance: 9,685 (1,966 Pompey fans)

Portsmouth FC

Jul 222017
 
Friendly
Portsmouth 1 – 2 AFC Bournemouth

 

Chaplin on target in friendly defeat

Conor Chaplin was on target as Pompey were narrowly beaten by top-flight Bournemouth at Fratton Park.

The striker levelled in the second half after Lys Mousset had earlier fired the visitors into the lead.

But Benik Afobe almost immediately netted for the Cherries and, despite a spirited display, the Blues could not find another goal.

Pre-season conjures up images of baking hot days with plenty of drinks breaks.

But coats and umbrellas were needed at Fratton Park, as the rain fell steadily throughout the only home friendly of the summer.

Recent Bournemouth signings Asmir Begovic and Jermain Defoe returned to their former club, while ex-Cherry Brett Pitman skippered the hosts.

It was the Premier League side that made the brighter start, with Luke McGee doing well to keep out Tyrone Mings’ deflected drive.

Mousset then met Ryan Fraser’s cross with a firm header that had to be cleared by a well-placed Pitman.

And Bournemouth broke the deadlock on nine minutes, as Afobe got down the right and cut the ball back for Mousset to fire home.

But the Blues grew into the game as the first half progressed and a left-footed attempt by Kyle Bennett from outside of the box narrowly cleared the crossbar.

Pitman then had a shot inadvertently blocked by Chaplin before heading Kal Naismith’s cross just over the bar.

The Cherries still threatened, though, and when McGee could not get a strong enough hand to Afobe’s angled drive, Carl Baker had to hack the ball from the line.

But Pompey were not looking over-awed and both Baker and Naismith were not too far away with efforts from distance.

Half Time: Pompey 0 Bournemouth 1

 

There was almost a leveller early in the second half, but Begovic showed his class by keeping out Pitman’s drive.

Pompey did grab an equaliser on 52 minutes, however, as Pitman cushioned a header into the path of CHAPLIN, who coolly slotted home.

But they were not on level terms for long, with Afobe’s neat back-heel almost immediately restoring Bournemouth’s lead.

The visitors then made a host of substitutions just before the hour mark and Defoe was among those introduced.

There were soon cries for a penalty when Bennett’s cross appeared to strike the arm of Cherries skipper Simon Francis, but referee Andy Davies was not interested.

The raft of changes ultimately took the sting out of the game and it started to meander towards a conclusion.

But Chaplin got everyone off their seats late on by drilling a left-footed shot against the base of the post.

Tareiq Holmes-Dennis’ cross then had to be cleared behind, while the impressive Christian Burgess headed over from the resulting corner.

Pompey were ultimately unable to find a second leveller, but it was certainly a performance to take comfort from against Premier League opposition.

Pompey (4-4-1-1): McGee; Evans, Davies, Burgess, Holmes-Dennis; Bennett, Baker, Rose, Naismith (Lalkovic 69); Pitman; Chaplin
Goals: Chaplin 52
Subs not used: Bass, Talbot, Whatmough, Haunstrup, May, Close, Lowe, Main, Kabamba

Bournemouth (4-2-3-1): Begovic (Federici 59); Francis (c), S.Cook (Worthington 46), Cargill (Ake 59), Mings (Daniels 46); Surman (L.Cook 59), Arter (Gosling 59); Fraser (Ibe 59), Mousset (King 59), Gradel (Pugh 59); Afobe (Defoe 59)
Goals: Mousset 9, Afobe 54
Subs not used: Mahoney, Simpson, Whitfield

Referee: Andy Davies

Attendance: 7,182 (988 away fans)

Portsmouth FC

Jul 082017
 

Friendly

0 – 6


Chaplin bags treble in Westleigh Park rout

Conor Chaplin hit a hat-trick as Pompey continued their prolific pre-season form with a 6-0 thrashing of Havant & Waterlooville.

The rout began with a Lee Molyneaux own-goal, while the striker then ran riot with a treble before the interval.

He also teed-up Kal Naismith to add to the advantage early in the second half, while Curits Main wrapped things up from the penalty spot.

Tareiq Holmes-Dennis made his first appearance in a Pompey shirt following his loan signing from Huddersfield earlier in the week.

The hosts named former Fratton midfielder Wes Fogden in their starting line-up, but Matt Tubbs missed out with an injury.

It was a hot and sunny afternoon at Westleigh Park, but that did not stop the first half from being played at a hectic pace.

And it was the visitors who unsurprisingly looked the more threatening side throughout the opening 45 minutes.

They had already gone close on a couple of occasions when Kyle Bennett fired against the crossbar following some fine build-up play between Chaplin and Holmes-Dennis.

The woodwork came to the Hawks’ rescue again soon after, with Bennett this time having a shot deflected against the post.

There was a blow for Kenny Jackett’s side in between those chances, however, as Matt Clarke limped off the pitch injured.

But the breakthrough did finally arrive – albeit in somewhat farcical fashion – on 26 minutes.

Naismith’s corner caused havoc in the box and the ball eventually ricocheted off the unfortunate Molyneaux and into the net.

That was the signal for the floodgates to open and Pompey doubled their advantage just a few moments later.

Holmes-Dennis swung a delightful cross into the area from wide on the left and CHAPLIN was left with a simple finish at the far post.

The Hawks then had their best chance of the half with a quick counter-attack, but Alex Bass surged from his line to brilliantly deny Alfie Rutherford.

Pompey were not quite so profligate and CHAPLIN bagged his second of the afternoon on 39 minutes, collecting a ball down the line and cutting inside before smashing home a shot.

And CHAPLIN completed his hat-trick in stoppage-time with a first time finish into the bottom corner after being teed-up by Naismith.


Half Time

(0 – 4)


Pompey did not sit on their lead at the start of the second half and Chaplin was once again involved in their fifth goal.

The diminutive striker sent a dangerous low ball into the box from wide on the left, leaving NAISMITH with a simple tap-in.

A flurry of substitutes soon disrupted the flow, however, with Chaplin among those taking a well-earned rest.

But it was one of the players who came on that managed to add a sixth goal for the Blues on 76 minutes.

MAIN barged his way into the box and drew a foul from Alfie Whittingham, then picked himself up to slam home from the spot.

The visitors continued to threaten and Nicke Kabamba was inches away from connecting with Drew Talbot’s cross.

Milan Lalkovic then embarked on a mazy run through the Hawks defence before being denied by a fine save from substitute keeper Alan Walker-Harris.

But Lee Bradbury’s Hawks managed to see the remaining moments out to limit the damage in front of a healthy Westleigh Park crowd.

Hawks (3-5-2): Young (Walker-Harris 72); Woodford, Molyneaux (Wakley 64), Harris; Tarbuck, Lewis (c) (Whittingham 64), Carter (Stock 64 (Yokota 79)), Fogden (Ridge 64), Williams; Prior (Odubade 46), Rutherford (Hayter 46)
Sub not used: Robinson

Pompey (4-2-3-1): Bass; Evans (c) (Talbot 72), Burgess (Whatmough 72), Clarke (Davies 16), Holmes-Dennis (Haunstrup 46); May (Roberts 76), Rose (Close 57); Baker (Lowe 57), Naismith (Kabamba 72), Bennett (Main 72); Chaplin (Lalkovic 57)
Goals: Molyneaux 26 (og), Chaplin 30, 39, 45+1, Naismith 47, Main 74 (pen)
Sub not used: Collins

Referee: Alex Blake

Attendance: 2,700

Portsmouth FC

Feb 182017
 
League 2
Barnet 1 – 1 Portsmouth

 

Chaplin grabs late equaliser

Conor Chaplin hit a fine late leveller to rescue a point for Pompey in a scrappy contest at The Hive.

A largely turgid encounter looked to be heading for a goalless scoreline, with few chances to excite those in the stands.

But Mauro Vilhete converted a late free-kick to give the home supporters cause to cheer and deflate the large travelling army.

Substitute Chaplin perked them up in the dying moments, however, with a peach of a shot that left Bees keeper Josh Vickers with no chance.

Paul Cook unsurprisingly stuck with the same side that beat Blackpool earlier in the week – naming an unchanged starting 11 for a fourth successive game.

The first half was a distinctly forgettable affair, with neither outfit being able to find their rhythm in a scrappy encounter.

Barnet won a free-kick 30 yards out, but Ruben Bover’s delivery swung out of play in a moment that summed up the action on offer.

The visitors finally carved out a decent opening on 20 minutes when Kyle Bennett released Gary Roberts down the right and the latter’s cross was glanced narrowly wide by Eoin Doyle.

Then, at the other end, David Forde made a fine reaction save to stop Curtis Weston from volleying home Vilhete’s centre.

And it was the Bees who finished the half looking the stronger side, with the Blues guilty of some sloppy play on the ball.

Former Pompey loannee John Akinde did brilliantly to chest the ball down on 38 minutes and send a shot dipping inches over the crossbar.

Charlie Clough then got on the end of a corner and his header was deflected just past the post by a relieved Michael Doyle.

Half Time: Barnet 0 Pompey 0

HIGHLIGHTS

Second Half

Cook made a double switch at the start of the second half, as Bennett and Jamal Lowe were replaced by Chaplin and Danny Rose.

That saw Pompey match their opponents’ 4-4-2 system, with Roberts at the tip of a diamond midfield.

The visiting fans – who made up more than 50 per cent of the total crowd – were making a racket in the stands.

But there was little action of note happening on the pitch, as the second half continued in the same vein as the first.

Chaplin got crowded out after collecting Amine Linganzi’s pass and charging into the box, as chances eluded both sides.

The hosts did go close on 66 minutes after Akinde won a soft free-kick just outside the area and Bover curled it onto the roof of the net.

And the Blues began to show more urgency as the minutes ticked down, with Chaplin having a shot blocked.

They were starting to look the more dangerous side, although it took a fine Christian Burgess challenge to finally halt the rampaging Akinde.

Carl Baker came on for the tiring Roberts for the final 10 minutes as Cook made his last throw of the dice.

But it was Barnet who forged ahead 10 minutes from time when Justin Amaluzor was fouled just outside the box and Vilhete stepped up to curl the free-kick over the wall.

It looked like the hosts were going to hang on for all three points – although CHAPLIN had other ideas.

The substitute had not had much joy since entering the pitch, but found the net with a rocket of a shot from 25 yards that flew into the top corner.

He celebrated with the fans first and then those on the bench, and it proved enough to secure a share of the spoils.

Barnet (4-4-2): Vickers; Clough, Nelson (c), Santos, Johnson; Vilhete, Bover (Sweeney 69), Champion, Weston; Akinola (Amaluzor 75), Akinde
Goals: Vilhete 82
Subs not used: McKenzie-Lyle, Dembele, Taylor, Tutonda, Coulson

Pompey (4-2-3-1): Forde; Evans, Burgess, Clarke, Stevens; Linganzi, M.Doyle (c); Lowe (Rose 46), Roberts (Baker 80), Bennett (Chaplin 46); E.Doyle
Goals: Chaplin 89
Booked: Roberts
Subs not used: O’Brien, T.Davies, Naismith, Hunt

Referee: Mark Brown

Attendance: 4,571 (2,430 Pompey fans)

Portsmouth FC
Jan 142017
 
League 2
Portsmouth 2 – 1 Leyton Orient

 

Chaplin double secures win

Conor Chaplin bagged a brace as Pompey got their promotion challenge back on track by beating Leyton Orient.

It was a display of almost total dominance by the Blues and the margin of victory probably should have been greater.

Chaplin saw a penalty saved, but quickly put that out of his mind to open the scoring, only for Gavin Massey to grab an impressive leveller.

There was to be no shock outcome, however, as Chaplin grabbed his second of the afternoon – and seventh of the season – early in the second half.

Paul Cook made one change from the side that were beaten at table-topping Doncaster nine days earlier.

That saw Chaplin replace Kyle Bennett, as the hosts switched to a more traditional 4-4-2 system.

There were plenty of familiar faces in the opposition line-up, with former Blues Alex Cisak, Nigel Atangana and Paul McCallum all selected.

Both sets of fans held a minute’s applause before kick-off in memory of former Pompey and Orient defender Paul Went, as well as ex-England boss Graham Taylor.

On the pitch it was a totally dominant first half display from the hosts, who set about attacking their struggling opponents straight from kick-off.

Chaplin could not quite get a touch to Kal Naismith’s clever free-kick after nipping in between a couple of defenders.

Tom Parkes then made a mess of trying to clear Carl Baker’s cross and Cisak had to intervene to stop the ball dipping under the crossbar.

Naismith soon played a neat one-two with Michael Smith and burst into the box, only to then fire over the top.

The hosts had an even better chance to break the deadlock on 22 minutes when Sammy Moore tripped Enda Stevens just inside the box.

Referee Brett Hutxtable pointed to the spot, but Cisak guessed the right way to palm Chaplin’s shot wide – the fifth penalty that Pompey have missed this season.

It was only a brief respite for the beleaguered visitors, however, as CHAPLIN made amends just seconds later by arriving at the far post to turn home Baker’s low cross.

The Blues immediately set about trying to add to their lead and Baker sent an effort curling narrowly past the post.

And Smith was unlucky not to add his name to the scoresheet when he met Naismith’s corner, only to see his header cleared from the line by Parkes.

David Forde might as well have been sat in the Fratton End such was Pompey’s dominance in the early stages.

But his first involvement was to pick the ball out of the net, as Orient levelled with their maiden chance on 38 minutes.

Not that the keeper could have done much to stop a stunning strike from Massey that flew into the top corner.

And the action was soon back down the other end of the pitch, with Stevens’ cut-back going behind three of his waiting team-mates in the box.

There was still time for one more chance in stoppage-time, with Teddy Mezague making a brilliant block to deny Baker before Naismith drove the loose ball wide.

Half Time: Pompey 1 Leyton Orient 1

HIGHLIGHTS

Second Half

There was a surprise switch at the start of the second half, with Jamal Lowe introduced in place of Gareth Evans – who had picked up an injury before the break – to make his Blues debut.

That saw Baker drop to right-back, but it did not stop his attacking intent as he soon provided the assist for a second Pompey goal.

It was a fine cross in from the right and CHAPLIN showed his usual poaching instincts to arrive and head the hosts back into the lead.

There might have been another soon after when Cisak fumbled Stevens’ low cross, but the keeper grabbed the loose ball before Smith could pounce.

Orient were unsurprisingly showing more ambition than prior to the interval, but it was still the Blues controlling possession as the half progressed.

Naismith, in particular, was looking full of confidence, showcasing some silky skills to jink his way past challenges.

But there was almost a disaster for Pompey on 66 minutes when Christian Burgess did not spot Forde coming to collect the ball and headed narrowly past his own post.

It was soon back to normal, though, and only a slight deflection prevented Smith from turning in Naismith’s free-kick.

Amine Linganzi replaced the Scottish winger on 76 minutes, as Cook looked to inject more steel into the midfield.

But that did not mean the Blues were looking to sit on their lead and a sliding Smith was agonisingly close to reaching Chaplin’s centre.

Stevens then surged into the box from wide on the left and sent a powerful effort fizzing past the post.

Chaplin received a standing ovation as he left the pitch to be replaced by Bennett for the closing stages.

And it was a deserved reception for the diminutive striker, as Pompey saw out the final few minutes to secure a valuable victory.

Pompey (4-4-2): Forde; Evans (Lowe 46), Burgess, Clarke, Stevens; Baker, Rose, Doyle (c), Naismith (Linganzi 76); Smith, Chaplin (Bennett 87)
Goals: Chaplin 23
Booked: Doyle
Subs not used: O’Brien, T.Davies, Roberts, Hunt

Leyton Orient (5-1-2-1-1): Cisak; Judd, Hunt (c), Mezague, Parkes, Semedo (Palmer 89); Moore (Bowery 69); Atangana, Collins; Massey; McCallum
Goals: Massey 38
Booked: Atangana
Subs not used: Sargeant, Pollock, Kennedy, Nnomo, Koroma

Referee: Brett Huxtable

Attendance: 16,564 (607 away fans)

Portsmouth FC
Oct 292016
 

League Two


 

Cambridge United    0

 


 

Portsmouth    1

 


Chaplin heads winner for 10-man Blues

Conor Chaplin headed home his fifth goal of the season to ensure Pompey kept up their impressive record over Cambridge.

He converted Christian Burgess’ cross midway through the first half of a game that otherwise failed to excite.

But the Blues had to play the final 30 minutes with only 10 men following a lunge from Amine Linganzi.

Paul Cook made one change from the side beaten by Notts County at Fratton Park the previous week.

That came in the centre of defence, where Tom Davies dropped to the bench to make way for Matt Clarke.

There were plenty of Pompey connections in the hosts’ set-up, with James Dunne and Adam McGurk both starting for Shaun Derry’s side.

It was not a contest to excite those in attendance at Abbey Stadium – including 1,850 who travelled up from the south coast – in the opening stages.

A couple of Blues breaks petered out before the defence could be properly troubled, while David Forde comfortably dealt with McGurk’s header.

The same player then tried an acrobatic over-head effort from 25 yards that sailed over the bar as the first half continued to plod along.

It was the same story at the other end of the pitch, where Gary Roberts laid a free-kick off to Michael Doyle, only for the skipper to take a total air-shot from the edge of the box.

But then, from nothing, Burgess broke clear down the right and Pompey found themselves in the lead on 24 minutes.

The defender launched the ball into the box from just inside the opposition half and CHAPLIN – the smallest player on the pitch – sent a header looping into the net.

Burgess then breathed a sigh of relief seconds later when Uche Ikpeazu went down under his challenge.

Referee Ross Joyce was unimpressed by the home side’s appeals, however, with Dunne’s protests earning him a yellow card.

Pompey were now enjoying a spell of pressure and Will Norris did well to parry away Kyle Bennett’s fierce effort, while a low Enda Stevens cross had to be hacked behind.

This was a few minutes of excitement in an otherwise dull half of football, however, as the interval arrived without any more noteworthy moments.


Half Time

(0 – 1)


There was a chance for the Blues at the start of the second half when Doyle played a clever pass over the top.

Chaplin latched onto it and did well to beat his man and burst into the box, but then bent a shot wide of the post.

Both sets of supporters applauded in the 53rd minute in memory of Pompey fan Gary Martin, who would have turned 53 today.

On the pitch, the visitors were almost caught out when they failed to clear the danger and the ball fell for Ben Williamson.

The striker was left with only Forde to beat, only to drag his shot wide and let Pompey off the hook.

But the Blues were dealt a huge blow when they were reduced to 10 men just past the hour mark.

Linganzi lunged into a challenge on Conor Newton in the centre circle and although there did not appear to be too much contact, his studs were showing and Joyce brandished a red card.

Cook immediately looked to shore up his side with a double substitution, as Bennett and Chaplin made way for Danny Rose and Noel Hunt.

Cambridge set about trying to make their numerical advantage count and when Piero Mingoia’s cross was headed clear by Burgess, Dunne saw his follow-up deflected narrowly wide.

But with Burgess and Clarke expertly marshalling things at the back, Forde was enjoying a largely untroubled afternoon.

And the Blues saw out the final few moments to secure a return to winning ways on one of their favourite hunting grounds.

Cambridge (4-4-2): Norris; Halliday (Pigott 83), Legge (c), Roberts, Taylor; Mingoia, Dunne, Clark (Newton 58), Dunk; McGurk (Williamson 33), Ikpeazu
Booked: Dunne, Halliday, Ikpeazu
Subs not used: Gregory, Long, Coulsen, Gosling

Pompey (4-2-3-1): Forde; Evans, Burgess, Clarke, Stevens; Linganzi, Doyle (c); Baker, Roberts (T.Davies 90+3), Bennett (Rose 62); Chaplin (Hunt 63)
Goals: Chaplin 24
Sent off: Linganzi
Booked: Chaplin, Doyle, Hunt, Roberts
Subs not used: O’Brien, Buxton, Lalkovic, Smith

Referee: Ross Joyce

Attendance: 6,397 (1,850 Pompey fans)


Portsmouth FC

Oct 222016
 

League Two


 

Portsmouth    1

 


 

Notts County    2

 


Dominance counts for nothing

Pompey were caught by a couple of sucker punches as they fell to defeat against Nott County at Fratton Park.

They dominated for most of the contest, but were caught out at the back and fell behind to Adam Campbell’s neat finish.

Conor Chaplin levelled within a few minutes and it looked like the Blues would go on to secure all three points.

But some more sloppy play allowed Campbell to strike again and despite Aaron Collins’ red card, the Magpies held on for the victory.

Paul Cook stuck with the same side that picked up a point at table-topping Plymouth the previous week.

That meant a fit-again Matt Clarke had to be content with a place on the bench, as Tom Davies continued alongside Christian Burgess in defence.

There were a couple of familiar faces in the opposition line-up, with Carl Dickinson and Richard Duffy both starting for the visitors.

And it was the Magpies who were first to threaten, with Robert Milsom not able to guide his header past David Forde.

But Pompey dominated the opening stages, enjoying plenty of possession and showing attacking inset from the outset.

They should have broken the deadlock on six minutes, with Chaplin somehow stabbing Enda Stevens’ cross wide from just a few yards out.

Kyle Bennett also dragged a long-range effort past the post, but with County keeping so many men behind the ball, the hosts were struggling to test keeper Adam Collin.

They were almost caught on the break when Jonathan Forte laid the ball off for Milsom, whose effort grazed the top of the bar.

Chaplin then missed another golden opportunity when he raced onto a long clearance and bore down on goal.

He tried to slide it past Collin, but the keeper saved and Chaplin slipped as he tried to gather the loose ball.

Pompey were able to steal back possession, however, and Collin did well again to stop Carl Baker’s effort going in at the near post.

But despite the home side’s dominance, it was Notts County who opened the scoring on 21 minutes.

The Blues defence were far too slow to stop Campbell collecting Duffy’s pass, turning and firing a sharp shot past Forde.

They were not behind for long, though, and after missing two great chances, CHAPLIN ensured it was third time lucky.

Bennett and Gary Roberts combined well down the left and the latter fired in a low cross that the striker slammed home.

Rather than step up a gear following all that action, however, the game then hit a lull as the interval approached.

Benett and Campbell both hit long-range efforts high over the bar, while Baker struck a fierce drive straight at Collin as the first half petered out.


Half Time

(1 – 1)


There was an injury scare soon after the restart when Gareth Evans hurt himself while conceding a free-kick.

He received treatment on the sidelines before returning to the action, but spent the next few minutes hobbling around the pitch.

Pompey then created a decent chance when Chaplin crossed into the box, but Bennett is not famed for his heading abilities and diverted the ball wide.

Cook soon made his first switch, with Stevens appearing to pick up a hamstring injury and being replaced at left-back by Kal Naismith.

The Blues kept plugging away, but the chances were not coming along as frequently as they had before the break.

In an attempt to liven things up in attack, Chaplin was withdrawn and Curtis Main was tasked with finding a winner.

But, within seconds, the hosts instead found themselves behind, with Campbell racing through to slot past Forde.

The keeper – like the rest of his team-mates – was incensed, believing that Davies had been fouled in the build-up and his protests resulted in a yellow card.

Pompey’s final substitution soon followed, with Bennett making way for Milan Lalkovic wide on the left.

But it was Roberts who threatened next, stealing the ball form Louis Laing, only to see his low cross cut out.

And the Blues were soon handed a numerical advantage when Collins dived in late on Forde and was shown a straight red card.

They immediately set about trying to find an equaliser and Collin kept out Main’s header from a pin-point Baker delivery.

Burgess was thrown up the field as an extra striker, with the hosts keen to push forward at every opportunity.

The Fratton faithful were buoyed by a display of six additional minutes from the fourth official and Baker twice went close to finding a leveller.

First, his shot was superbly saved by Collin from point-blank range and then, from the resulting corner, he narrowly cleared the crossbar.

Roberts also fizzed a shot inches past the post, as Notts County held firm to leave with all three points.

Pompey (4-2-3-1): Forde; Evans, T.Davies, Burgess, Stevens (Naismith 59); Linganzi, Doyle (c); Baker, Roberts, Bennett (Lalkovic 74); Chaplin (Main 70)
Goals: Chaplin 27
Booked: Forde, Doyle
Subs not used: O’Brien, Clarke, Rose, Smith

Notts County (4-1-4-1): Collin; Tootle, Laing, Hollis, Dickinson (c); Duffy; Campbell (Smith 90), Richards, Milsom, Forte (Rodman 90); Collins
Goals: Campbell 21, 71
Sent off: Collins
Booked: Laing
Subs not used: Loach, Hewitt, Edwards, O’Connor, Burke

Referee: Nigel Miller

Attendance: 17,269 (364 away fans)


Portsmouth FC