Jan 262021
 


LOST (H) League 1
Portsmouth 0
Lincoln City 1


Pompey were left cursing a controversial red card for Jack Whatmough as they were narrowly beaten by Lincoln at Fratton Park.

The defender was sent off for a challenge on Jorge Grant in the first half, despite appearing to win the ball cleanly.

It looked like the Blues would still hold on for a point, but Morgan Rogers came off the bench to grab a late winner for the visitors.

Kenny Jackett – in his 200th game in charge of Pompey – kept faith with the same side that were beaten by Hull at the weekend.

It meant that new signings George Byers and Charlie Daniels had to be content with a place among the substitutes.

The game started at an electric pace and a threaded Grant pass was just too heavy for Anthony Scully to get a vital touch on.

Ronan Curtis tried to get on the end of a teasing Callum Johnson’s delivery at the other end, but TJ Eyoma nodded clear.

Both sides were looking to launch quick attacks, although neither keeper was being particularly troubled by the end product.

That was until Craig MacGillivray had to get down to make a smart stop to deny Anthony Scully midway through the first half.

But the big talking point arrived on 29 minutes when Whatmough made a firm challenge on Grant and yet emerged with the ball.

The defender was miffed that referee Sam Purkiss blew for a foul and his look changed to one of incredulity when a red card was brandished.

Lincoln almost took immediate advantage when the free-kick was lofted forward and Conor McGrandles’ header had to be parried away by MacGillivray.

Skipper Tom Naylor had dropped back alongside Sean Raggett in defence, as Pompey fielded a 4-4-1 system.

It was, unsurprisingly, the visitors who finished the half on top and Pompey were fortunate to see McGrandles’ goal-bound header ricochet off Lee Brown’s leg and loop over.

And Tayo Edun was then inches away from breaking the deadlock just before the break, courtesy of a fizzing effort that rattled the crossbar.


Half Time

Portsmouth 0

Lincoln City 0


Marcus Harness was the man sacrificed to shore up the back-line after the break, as Rasmus Nicolaisen replaced him.

Purkiss continued to frustrate the home side when Scully clearly tugged down Johnson and, this time, kept his cards in his pocket.

Pompey were being forced back, as their opponents tried to find a breakthrough, but were making sure to get their bodies in between the ball and their goal.

Alex Palmer then dwelled far too long with the ball at his feet at the other end, with a sliding Curtis not quite able to make him pay.

But the keeper did better just past the hour mark to get a hand on Williams’ cross, taking the ball away from the waiting John Marquis and Curtis.

The hosts felt that a Curtis free-kick was blocked by the hand of Eyoma on 67 minutes, but their appeals were ignored by Purkiss.

MacGillivray was being well protected, but had to beat away an effort from McGrandles, with Nicolaisen hooking the loose ball over his own bar.

Marquis had worked hard up front without much reward and was replaced by the fresh legs of Ellis Harrison.

There were then penalty appeals at the other end when Rogers felt he was tripped by Nicolaisen, but again the referee was unmoved.

Williams was given a rest following his tireless display, as Michael Jacobs entered the fray on 76 minutes.

But the Blues’ resolve was finally broken on 79 minutes when McGrandles teed-up Rogers to slot the ball home.

Jackett immediately threw on Daniels and Byers for their debuts and the former almost set-up an equaliser.

He swung in a fine corner that was met by the head of Curtis, although a defender was able to head from the line.

Pompey tried their best to get men forward and find a last gap leveller, but the Imps held on to secure top spot in League One.

Pompey (4-4-1-1): MacGillivray; Johnson, Whatmough, Raggett, Brown (Daniels 81); Harness (Nicolaisen 46), Naylor (c), Cannon (Byers 81), Curtis; Williams (Jacobs 76); Marquis (Harrison 70)
Sent off: Whatmough
Booked: Harness, Raggett
Subs not used: Turnbull, White

Lincoln (4-1-4-1): Palmer; Eyoma, Jackson, Walsh, Edun (Melbourne 86); Bridcutt (c); Scully (Rogers 70), McGrandles, Grant, Johnson (Anderson 89); Hopper
Goals: Rogers 79
Booked: Edun, Jackson, McGrandles
Subs not used: Long, Montsma, Jones, Howarth

Referee: Sam Purkiss

Portsmouth FC Season 20/21

Dec 052020
 

League 1




Pompey celebrated the return of fans to Fratton Park with a convincing victory over promotion rivals Peterborough.

They dominated for much of the contest on a wet and windy south coast, but could not find a breakthrough before the interval.

Jack Whatmough finally broke the deadlock, though, and a Tom Naylor special made sure the points were safe.

It was a result that was gleefully welcomed by 2,000 Blues fans, who had waited almost nine months to see their side in action.

Kenny Jackett stuck with the same side that had been narrowly beaten at Blackpool earlier in the week.

There was a minute’s applause before kick-off in memory of Papa Bouba Diop, who tragically passed away last weekend at the age of just 42.

When the action started, Pompey looked bright in and out of possession and passed the ball around nicely.

But for all their neat play in the centre of the pitch, they were unable to test Christy Pym between the sticks.

Siriki Dembele went close for the visitors in the early stages with a long-range effort that flew not too far wide of the post.

The Blues were sending in plenty of deliveries at the other end, but Posh were defending them well, with striker Jonson Clarke-Harris coming back to good effect to deal with corners.

Former Fratton full-back Nathan Thompson was then forced into a hurried clearance to prevent Lee Brown from pouncing after Ryan Williams’ low centre had been flicked on by John Marquis.

Peterborough came close to scoring against the run of play on 34 minutes after Whatmough had sliced a clearance.

That sent Dembele through on goal, but Craig MacGillivray was off his line quickly to deny the forward.

The hosts soon had an opening of their own when Ronan Curtis stole possession and fed Williams, whose angled drive flew narrowly past the post.


Half Time

Portsmouth 0

Peterborough United 0


Pompey broke menacingly from a Posh corner early in the second half and Curtis burst away from inside his own half.

But the winger was cynically brought down by Thompson, who was deservedly shown the game’s first yellow card.

Marcus Harness then lifted the ball into the mixer and Williams had space to rise unmarked, but sent his header wide.

The Blues were certainly posing a threat and Frankie Kent did well to deny Curtis, who also skewed a shot wide from Callum Johnson’s cross.

Williams then outfought Fraser Blake-Tracy and fired in a shot that was parried by Pym, only for Curtis to fire the loose ball wide.

But the hosts finally made their pressure count just past the hour mark after Blake-Tracy had been booked for a foul on Johnson.

Brown swung in the free-kick from the right and WHATMOUGH rose above Kent to emphatically head home.

The visitors responded with a triple substitution, but soon found themselves further behind thanks to a moment of magic from the skipper.

NAYLOR, who headed a corner over a few moments earlier, received a pass from Andy Cannon 30 yards out and hit a rocket into the top corner to continue his recent goalscoring form.

It was still the Blues looking more likely to add to the scoring and Curtis sent a long-range free-kick dipping onto the roof of the net.

And, with the rain continuing to fall, they saw the contest out with relative ease, much to the delight of those in the stands.

Pompey (4-2-3-1): MacGillivray; Johnson, Whatmough, Raggett, Brown; Cannon, Naylor (c); Harness, Williams, Curtis; Marquis (Harrison 86)
Goals: Whatmough 61, Naylor 75
Booked: Cannon, Naylor, Brown
Subs not used: Bass, Nicolaisen, Pring, Morris, Close, Hiwula

Peterborough (4-1-2-1-2): Pym; Thompson (Mason 67), Kent, Beevers (c), Blake-Tracy (Kanu 67); Reed; Taylor, Hamilton (Broom 67); Szmodics (Eisa 74); Dembele, Clarke-Harris
Booked: Thompson, Blake-Tracy, Taylor
Subs not used: Gyollai, Brown, Clarke

Referee: Peter Wright

Attendance: 2,000

Portsmouth FC

Oct 032020
 

Match Report

Highlights

League 1




Marcus Harness netted a hat-trick as Pompey produced a dominant display at Burton to record their first league win of the season.

He struck in the second minute of each half, then wrapped up the three points with a fine turn and finish.

The first of his goals had been cancelled out by Lucas Akins, while Tom Naylor soon found his own net to ensure the Brewers led at the break.

But Harness – facing his former club – quickly levelled and, after Jack Whatmough had given the Blues the lead, finished things off to claim the matchball.

Kenny Jackett made two changes from the side that were beaten on home soil by Wigan the previous weekend.

Ellis Harrison returned to lead the line, while there were also starts for Lee Brown and Ryan Williams.

John Marquis, Cam Pring and Ronan Curtis all dropped to the bench, with the latter looking to make his 100th appearance for the club.

The visitors got off to a blistering start in the wet and windy conditions, taking the lead with just 79 seconds on the clock.

Michael Jacobs showed neat footwork in the box, but was tackled as he shaped to shoot and the ball fell for HARNESS to drill home.

The advantage should probably have been doubled moments later, with Williams racing through on goal and bending his shot the wrong side of the post.

Instead it was the Brewers who got the next goal of the game when Ryan Edwards cut the ball back for Kane Hemmings.

His effort was blocked by Tom Naylor, but the follow-up from Akins was deflected in off the Pompey skipper.

And there was more misfortune for the midfielder when he tried to clear Joe Powell’s cross and inadvertently sliced the ball into his own net to give Burton the lead.

The Blues tried to hit back and Harrison was perhaps a bit too eager, earning a booking for a crunching challenge on Ben Fox.

Jacobs was looking the most dangerous outlet down the left, but the visitors were just missing that final ball.

Williams did combine well with Harness on 35 minutes and the latter’s drive flew narrowly past the post.

Harness then had a great chance to level deep into stoppage-time, when Williams’ cross was parried into his path by Ben Garratt, but he was unable to convert from close range.


Half Time

Burton Albion 2

Portsmouth 1


The visitors came charging out of the blocks following the restart and Harrison’s header was just about diverted wide by Garratt.

But an equaliser did arrive from the resulting corner, with HARNESS neatly back-heeling the ball home after Harrison had initially got his head to Brown’s delivery.

Harrison tried to restore the lead after receiving a lovely lifted pass from Naylor, but – under pressure from two defenders – could only hook over the bar.

Then, when the striker was brought down 20 yards out, Jacobs curled the free-kick onto the roof of the net.

It seemed only a matter of time before Pompey would score again and when two defenders collided, Harrison drew a smart save from Garratt.

The resulting corner did lead to a goal on the hour mark, though, as Brown’s cross was nodded back into the mixer by Harrison for WHATMOUGH to slot home.

Jackett soon made his first change of the afternoon, with Curtis bringing up his Blues century by replacing Williams.

Pompey were winning plenty of corners and another one ended with Harrison drawing a save from Garratt.

They were looking completely dominant and so it came as no surprise when the fourth arrived on 74 minutes.

Curtis played the ball across to HARNESS, who beat his man with a delightful flick before lifting the ball over Garratt.

He then turned provider to create an opportunity for Curtis, but the Republic of Ireland international saw his effort blocked.

Harrison was given warm applause by the Blues bench as he made his way off and Marquis came on for the final few minutes.

And it was a similar story when Harness made way for Andy Cannon, as the closing stages were negotiated with ease to ensure Pompey broke their duck and leapt up the table.

Burton (4-1-4-1): Garratt; Fox, Brayford (c), O’Toole, Daniel; Quinn (Roles 66); Akins, Edwards, Powell (Lawless 80), Vernam (Vassilev 66); Hemmings
Goals: Akins 14, Naylor 20 (og)
Booked: Hemmings
Subs not used: O’Hara, Wallace, Gallacher, Gilligan

Pompey (4-2-3-1): MacGillivray; Johnson, Whatmough, Raggett, Brown; Naylor (c), Morris; Williams (Curtis 62), Harness (Cannon 90), Jacobs; Harrison (Marquis 86)
Goals: Harness 2, 47, 74, Whatmough 60
Booked: Harrison
Subs not used: Bass, Nicolaisen, Pring, Close

Referee: Tom Nield

Portsmouth FC

Aug 182018
 

Match Report

Highlights

League 1




Pompey continued their 100 per cent start to the league season with a convincing victory over Oxford at Fratton Park.

They dominated the contest, but it looked like a frustrating afternoon might be in store when Gareth Evans saw his penalty saved.

The Blues were more clinical after the interval, however, and Evans redeemed himself, while a Rob Dickie own-goal and Jamal Lowe effort gave the scoreline a more realistic gloss.

United staged a late rally and twice the struck the woodwork before Jack Whatmough found his own net.

But the visitors – who are without a league point – were unable to stage an unlikely comeback and Lowe wrapped things up impressively in stoppage-time.

Kenny Jackett made six changes from the side that exited the Carabao Cup on home soil earlier in the week.

Ben Thompson was handed an immediate debut in the centre of midfield, having finalised a loan switch from Millwall the previous day.

There were also starts for Craig MacGillivray, Whatmough, Lee Brown, Ronan Curtis and Oli Hawkins.

Luke McGee, Christian Burgess, Brandon Haunstrup, Ben Close, David Wheeler and Brett Pitman were the men to make way, with all of them dropping to the bench.

Pompey had not been overly convincing in their opening day home victory over Luton, but they completely controlled the first half against Oxford.

The contest was slow to get going, but it was the hosts who dominated in terms of both possession and chances.

Tony McMahon had to clear Tom Naylor’s header behind, while Curtis was unable to keep his effort down from a Lowe centre.

Hawkins was proving a constant nuisance, but could not find the target after Whatmough’s long clearance picked him out.

It was a lively display from Thompson in the centre of the pitch and he certainly endeared himself to the Fratton faithful with a crunching – yet fair – challenge on Marcus Browne.

And the host should have broken the deadlock when Hawkins stole possession from Jamie Hanson, only to then be scythed down by the Oxford midfielder.

Referee Lee Swabey immediately pointed to the spot, but Evans’ tame effort was comfortably dealt with Jonathan Mitchell.

The ball stayed in play, though, and when it was worked to Thompson outside the box, his drilled effort fizzed just past the post.

Pompey were totally on top and had another great opportunity, as Hawkins flicked on Thompson’s pass, but Naylor swiped at thin air from just a few yards out.

Evans had another chance after collecting the ball from Lowe, but could not force his shot through a sea of yellow-shirted bodies.

United were racking up the bookings, with Hanson, Cameron Brannagan and Shandon Baptiste all cautioned.

But there was a Fratton first when their coach Shaun Derry – formerly of the Blues – argued with the fourth official and – under new FA rules – was also shown a yellow card.

There was one more chance for the hosts just before the break, but Hawkins was unable to connect with Thompson’s low cross at the near post.


Half Time

Portsmouth 0

Oxford United 0


Pompey had not made the most of their dominance in the first half, but roared into the lead just after the interval.

Hawkins was unable to turn in Lowe’s delivery, but instead managed to lay the ball off for EVANS to steer home.

Naylor then clashed with Brannagan and both players required treatment, with the Blues midfielder returning to the pitch sporting a bandaged head.

It was still pretty much one-way traffic and the lead was deservedly doubled on 56 minutes – albeit in fortuitous circumstances.

Lowe caused more problems on the right and tried to pick out Evans in the box, only for DICKIE to get there first and turn the ball into his own net.

Oxford made a triple substitution just past the hour mark in a desperate attempt to find a route back into the contest.

Instead they found themselves further behind, as Pompey continued to torment their under-siege opponents.

A corner from Evans was helped on by Clarke and turned towards goal by Hawkins, with LOWE sticking out a boot to flick the ball past Mitchell.

The visitors finally came to life in the closing stages and Brannagan forced a decent save from MacGillivray.

Oxford then hit the post twice in quick succession, with James Henry and Jon Obika both denied in a lively conclusion.

Their hopes were raised when Whatmough inadvertently sliced McMahon’s cross into his own net, but that was as good as it got.

Instead it was Pompey who had the final say, as LOWE surged forward and curled home an exquisite finish to complete the rout.

Pompey (4-3-3): MacGillivray; Walkes, Whatmough, Clarke, Brown; Naylor, Evans (c), B.Thompson; Lowe, Hawkins, Curtis (Wheeler 80)
Goals: Evans 48, Dickie 56 (og), Lowe 65, 90+2
Booked: B.Thompson
Subs not used: McGee, Burgess, Haunstrup, Close, Chaplin, Pitman

Oxford (4-2-3-1): Mitchell; McMahon, Dickie, Nelson (c), Garbutt (Ruffels 61); Hanson, Brannagan; Mackie, Baptiste (Henry 61), Browne; Smith (Obika 61)
Goals: Whatmough 89 (og)
Booked: Brannagan, Hanson, Baptiste
Subs not used: Shearer, Norman, Mousinho, Whyte

Referee: Lee Swabey

Attendance: 18,093 (1,312 away fans)

Portsmouth FC

Feb 252017
 


League 2
Brunton Park

Carlisle United 0
Portsmouth 3


Roberts, Linganzi and Whatmough on target.

A scintillating second half performance from Pompey saw them beat promotion rivals Carlisle at Brunton Park.

Goals from Gary Roberts, Amine Linganzi and Jack Whatmough ensured it was an enjoyable afternoon for the Blues in the north-west.

Neither side managed to take advantage of their chances in a first half that had plenty of talking points, but was short on quality.

It was the visitors who moved through the gears after the interval, however, and a fine strike from Roberts gave them a deserved lead.

Linganzi then opened his account for the club with another impressive strike to end Carlisle’s hopes of a comeback.

And Whatmough wrapped things up deep into stoppage-time with his first ever senior goal for the club.

Paul Cook made one change from the side that draw at Barnet the previous week.

Jamal Lowe dropped to the bench to make way for Carl Baker on the right hand side of Pompey’s attacking midfield trio.

The hosts had the ball in the net inside the first minute, but there were no celebrations from Jamie Proctor, as the linesman had long since raised his flag for offside.

Baker then tried his luck with a low shot at the other end, with Mark Gillespie getting down to beat the ball away.

Both sides were showing plenty of attacking intent, although the quality was lacking in the final third.

A slip from Christian Burgess almost let Reggie Lambe through on goal, but David Forde came charging from his area to reach the ball first.

United were then forced to make a change on 15 minutes, as a clash of heads saw Shaun Brisley replaced by Tom Miller.

There continued to be space for both sides to expose and Forde got down well to parry clear Nicky Adams’ angled drive.

The hosts then managed to work the ball across to the unmarked Miller on the right, only for Roberts to get a vital block in.

There was another piece of bad news for Carlisle on 36 minutes, however, when Michael Raynes picked up an injury and joined central defensive partner Brisley on the sidelines.

Pompey were looking more threatening as the first half progressed and Roberts curled a free-kick narrowly wide from just outside the box.

But the home support were outraged that their side were not awarded a penalty a few moments later.

Forde failed to collect a cross for the first time and in the ensuing scramble, the ball bounced up and hit Gareth Evans on the arm.

Referee Richard Clark ignored the desperate cries for a spot-kick to be awarded, agreeing with the Blues’ right-back that it had not been a deliberate offence.

And Pompey almost rubbed salt into the wounds by breaking the deadlock just before the interval.

Carlisle failed to deal with Evans’ low delivery into the box and the ball ricocheted into Eoin Doyle’s path, only for the striker to somehow clear the crossbar with the goal gaping.


Half Time

Carlisle United 0

Portsmouth 0


Whatever Cook said to his players at the break appeared to do the trick as the visitors came charging out of the blocks.

And they had three excellent chances to open the scoring within the first three minutes of the second half.

First Enda Stevens got free down the left and his low cross was almost diverted into his own net by Gary Liddle.

Roberts teed-up Eoin Doyle to slot the ball home from close-range a few seconds later, but the striker had strayed into an offside decision.

And another effort from the loanee then took a massive deflection and was looping in until a back-pedalling Gillespie managed to tip it over.

It was not all one-way traffic, though, and Proctor should have guided the ball on target when he met Luke Joyce’s pin-point cross.

Pompey were then back on the attack and when Gillespie fumbled Linganzi’s header, Kyle Bennett’s follow-up was blocked.

The action continued at a hectic pace as the action once again switched to the other end, with Forde getting down to brilliantly turn Lambe’s shot around the post.

Cook made a double substitution – and a change of system – on 72 minutes, as he went in search of a breakthrough.

Whatmough and Conor Chaplin replaced Baker and Bennett, with Pompey switching to a 3-5-2 formation.

And the move paid dividends within seconds, although it was a man already on the pitch who fired the visitors ahead.

It was a fine solo effort for ROBERTS, who burst clear through the centre and beat Gillespie with an exquisite finish.

The midfielder received a warm round of applause as he made way for Kal Naismith for the final 10 minutes.

And the points were then wrapped up late on, courtesy of a 25-yard strike from LINGANZI that arrowed into the bottom corner.

There was a mixture of delight and relief from the 1,209 travelling fans, who had plenty to cheer in the stands.

But they had even more to celebrate in stoppage-time when Naismith picked out WHATMOUGH to drill his first goal for the club into the bottom corner.

Carlisle (4-2-3-1): Gillespie; Liddle, Raynes (c) (McQueen 36), Brisley (Miller 15), Gillesphey; Joyce, Jones; O’Sullivan (Ibehre 60), Lambe, Adams; Proctor
Booked: O’Sullivan, Miller
Subs not used: Crocombe, Bailey, Devitt, Waring

Pompey (4-2-3-1): Forde; Evans, Burgess, Clarke, Stevens; Linganzi, M.Doyle (c); Baker (Whatmough 72), Roberts (Naismith 80), Bennett (Chaplin 72); E.Doyle
Goals: Roberts 73, Linganzi 86, Whatmough 90+2
Subs not used: O’Brien, Rose, Lowe, Hunt

Referee: Richard Clark

Attendance: 7,197 (1,209 Pompey fans)

Portsmouth FC Season 16/17

May 072016
 

Match Report

Highlights

League 2




Freeman sent off as Blues lose to champions.

Pompey will host Plymouth in the first leg of the play-offs on Thursday evening after losing 2-1 to Northampton.

The champions took the lead through Jack Whatmough’s unfortunate own-goal in the opening stages.

Kieron Freeman then received his marching orders for a late challenge, only for a Kal Naismith stunner to draw the hosts level.

A series of attacking substitutions were made as the Blues searched for a winner, but instead James Collins secured all three points for the Cobblers.

Paul Cook made five changes from the side that won at Hartlepool the previous week.

Whatmough was handed his first start for more than a year in the centre of defence, with fellow academy graduates Brandon Haunstrup and Ben Close also featuring.

Ben Davies returned and skippered the side in place of Michael Doyle, while Adam McGurk came in up front.

Meanwhile, former Pompey players Ricky Holmes and John Marquis led the line for the visitors, who were afforded a guard of honour as they entered the pitch.

There were a plethora of awards handed out before kick-off, with Ben Davies picking up six from various supporters’ groups.

But it was Doyle who was named The News/Sports Mail Player of the Season – and the reaction from the fans indicated that it was deserved recognition.

Both sets of supporters then paid their respects to all the Blues fans who have sadly passed away over the past year with a minute’s applause.

Once the action got underway at a warm and sunny – and packed – Fratton Park, it was the visitors who looked more threatening.

Whatmough had to deal with a couple of dangerous crosses as a new-look Pompey side struggled for fluency.

But they were not too far away from opening the scoring on 12 minutes, with Adam McGurk flinging himself at Naismith’s cross and not quite making a clean connection.

Almost immediately, however, they found themselves behind as Whatmough inadvertently sliced Nicky Adams’ cross into his own net.

Pompey were not really playing with a recognised striker, as Gary Roberts occupied a ‘false number nine’ role, flanked by Naismith and McGurk.

They did start to create more as the half progressed, though, with McGurk curling a shot over and Naismith steering narrowly wide.

But Northampton still looked dangerous themselves and Marquis might have done better than firing wildly over after being picked out by Holmes.

Pompey should have been level on 33 minutes following a good move that started with a poor clearance from Cobblers keeper Adam Smith.

Roberts picked the ball up and it soon found its way, via Freeman, to Davies down the right flank.

The full-back sent in a low cross, but Smith redeemed himself by somehow denying Naismith from point-blank range.

Roberts then collected a lovely pass over the top from Close and spotted Smith off his line, although he could not quite chip the ball over the back-pedalling keeper.

Both sides picked up a booking before the break, with Davies and Lawson D’Ath penalised for fouls on Holmes and Haunstrup respectively.


Half Time

Portsmouth 0

Northampton Town 1


Pompey’s hopes of getting anything from the game were dealt a massive blow just after the restart when they were reduced to 10 men.

Freeman slid in to try to win the ball and although he did not really catch John-Joe O’Toole, referee Mark Brown decided it was dangerous.

He immediately brandished a red card to rule the on-loan Sheffield United utility man out of the play-offs.

But the hosts found themselves level just seconds later – thanks to a strike right out of the top drawer.

There did not look much on when NAISMITH advanced goalwards, but he hit a stunning, swerving 35-yard strike that arrowed into the net.

Cook was forced to make his first substitution on the hour mark, as Close limped off to be replaced by Adam May.

Haunstrup then had the ball in the back of the net, but Brown had already blown his whistle for a foul on Smith by McGurk.

Northampton soon enjoyed a period of pressure, with Marquis denied by Brian Murphy before Alfie Potter fired into the side netting.

Cook made an attacking switch on 69 minutes, as Conor Wilkinson replaced Whatmough for his debut.

That resulted in a defensive reshuffle which saw Gareth Evans drop to right-back and Davies move into the centre.

And Naismith was soon employed at left-back when Haunstrup made way for Ben Tollitt on 77 minutes.

Pompey now had an abundance of attack-minded players on the pitch, but the visitors soon made their numerical advantage count to retake the lead.

Cobblers skipper David Buchanan swung the ball into the box and Collins got a faint touch to turn it home.

Naismith tried to draw the Blues level with another attempt from long-range, but this time Smith dived across goal to make the save.

And Pompey were unable to find a late leveller as the visitors secured victory to cap a memorable campaign.

But plenty of fans still stayed behind to salute the Blues as they returned to the pitch after the final whistle for a lap of appreciation.

Pompey (4-3-3): Murphy; Davies (c), Whatmough (Wilkinson 69), Barton, Haunstrup (Tollitt 77); Freeman, Close (May 60), Evans; McGurk, Roberts, Naismith
Goals: Naismith 48
Sent off: Freeman
Booked: Davies, McGurk, Evans
Subs not used: Jones, Stevens, Doyle, Oxlade-Chamberlain

Northampton (4-4-2): Smith; Lelan, Diamond, Prosser, Buchanan (c); D’Ath (Hoskins 80), O’Toole, Rose, Adams (Potter 62); Marquis (Collins 67), Holmes
Goals: Whatmough 13 (og), Collins 81
Booked: D’Ath
Subs not used: Clarke, Cresswell, Taylor, Byrom

Referee: Mark Brown

Attendance: 18,746 (2,807 away fans)

Portsmouth FC