|Diane Kruger||15 Jul
|Matt Tubbs||15 Jul
|Forest Green Rovers|
Striker moves to Forest Green
Pompey and Matt Tubbs have agreed a deal for the striker to leave Fratton Park and join Forest Green.
The 31-year-old scored 14 goals in 40 appearances for the Blues after signing from Bournemouth in January 2015.
Tubbs said: “I’d like to thank the fans for their support and also chairman Iain McInnes for giving me the chance to play for this fantastic club.
“Pompey belong in a higher league, but the club is moving in the right direction and I wish them well.
“This is a new and exciting chapter for me. Forest Green were unlucky not to win promotion last season and hopefully I can help them create history by becoming a League club.”
Everyone at Pompey would like to thank Matt for his service to the club and wish him well for the future.
After the disappointment of the play off defeat Paul Cook has started to trim the squad for next season.
Brian Murphy, Chad Field and Snorre Nilsen have been released following the expiration of their contracts.
Adam McGurk, Kal Naismith and Matt Tubbs have been transfer listed. Options taken up on Tollitt, May and Close. Talks continue with Hollands and Davies.
Good to see Tollitt kept, the only real surprise in Naismith who was just starting to show some promise.
Matt Tubbs joins Eastleigh on loan till the end of season
While the progressive Pompey continue to drive forward, they have left behind the prolific 31-year-old.
Today’s loan move to Eastleigh for the remainder of the season was long-anticipated.
Stewart Donald’s club have realistic aspirations of reaching League Two. Tubbs is a natural fit.
He arrived at Fratton Park in January 2015 with much expectancy and, unlike so many recruits in recent times, didn’t disappoint.
During Tubbs’ early days with the Blues, they dropped as low as 18th in League Two under Andy Awford.
Yet once opening his account against Hartlepool upon his fifth appearance, there was never any danger of Pompey being dragged into non-league football.
Tubbs went on to score nine goals in 23 appearances – in the process establishing a decent strike partnership with Ryan Taylor.
There was the hat-trick at Cambridge United in February 2015, a team he flourishes against.
He also netted in wins over Hartlepool, Luton and Mansfield in addition to three draws. By the season’s end, his goals had contributed to 15 points.
Regardless, the club closed the campaign in 16th – its lowest finish in a 95-year Football League existence.
Yet League Two’s golden boot winner would soon endure a frustrating time.
Paul Cook arrived in May armed with a new system involving one striker in attack.
Despite starting the opening four league matches at the head of a 4-2-3-1 formation, the ongoing concern was Tubbs was not a natural in the role.
Jayden Stockley and Adam McGurk were soon catapulted above him, before both were struck down by injury.
Tubbs returned and netted in wins over Cambridge and Newport – yet failed to make a Blues squad since October 31.
Ironically, Cook has returned to a 4-4-2 in the last two matches, with Tubbs still rigidly out-of-favour.
On Saturday he instead played Fifa Soccer with young fans at Fratton Park, continuing to fulfil club duties.
Now, after 40 games and 14 goals, he has answered the SOS call from another club.
And we all know he will not let them down.
|Newport County||0 – 1||Portsmouth|
Matt Tubbs grabbed the only goal as Pompey maintained their excellent away record with victory at bottom club Newport.
The winner arrived in first half stoppage-time after the visitors had dominated without creating many clear-cut chances.
The game’s other big talking point was a change of officials after referee James Adcock was forced off injured.
Paul Cook made two changes from the side that won at Cambridge the previous week.
Adam Webster and Kal Naismith both made their first league starts of the season, with Matt Clarke dropping to the bench and Gareth Evans starting a three-match ban.
Also among the substitutes were recent loan signing Caolan Lavery, utility man Rommy Boco and fit-again goalkeeper Brian Murphy.
Pompey made a bright start and Gary Roberts sent a fine ball across the face of goal that none of his team-mates could make a connection with.
At the other end, Webster did well to turn behind Zak Ansah’s low cross and Aaron McCarey punched clear from the resulting corner.
But the Blues soon started to dominate possession and enjoy their usual patient passing game.
Kyle Bennett created a great chance on 17 minutes when he bamboozled his man down the left and sent a delivery into the box, but Roberts’ effort was blocked by Scot Bennett.
Roberts had another chance after Pompey advanced down the middle moments later, with his chipped effort flying wide.
The home support were growing frustrated by their side’s inability to keep hold of the ball, but Newport were not really being put under too much pressure.
And Lenell John-Lewis had the ball in the back of Pompey’s net on 31 minutes, only for the goal to be disallowed for a foul on Christian Burgess in the build-up.
There was then a lengthy stoppage as Adcock limped to the sidelines and had to be replaced by fourth official Wayne Barratt.
That drew comical – and somewhat uncaring – chants of ‘You’re Not Fit To Referee’ from the amused spectators.
It led to four minutes of stoppage-time and Pompey managed to forge ahead in the second of them.
Bennett sent a fine threaded pass through to TUBBS, who clinically slotted the ball into the bottom corner to send the large travelling contingent wild with delight.
Half Time: Newport 0 Pompey 1
The first action of the second half – once a qualified referee from the crowd had been sourced to take over fourth official duties – saw Scott Barrow booked for a late challenge on Tubbs.
It was a scrappy first few minutes, although both sides had the chance to score within a few seconds of each other on 53 minutes.
When Naismith won a free-kick on the edge of the box, Bennett quickly played it to Roberts, whose fierce drive was blocked.
Newport then broke quickly up the other end of the pitch and the moved ended with Mark Byrne firing inches past the post.
The hosts had another opportunity when Adam Barton conceded a free-kick in a dangerous position, but Tommy O’Sullivan’s curling effort was comfortable for McCarey.
Cook decided the time was right for a change just before the hour mark and Naismith made way for debutant Rommy Boco.
Pompey were struggling to find any fluency, although Bennett did see a long-range drive sail narrowly wide.
Another substitution followed on 68 minutes as Danny Hollands replaced Barton in the centre of midfield.
And the Blues had a great chance to wrap the points up soon after following a great move down the left involving Bennett and Enda Stevens.
County keeper Joe Day managed to get a hand to the latter’s low cross and the ball was agonisingly out of reach for either Tubbs or Roberts to poke home.
Pompey’s final change came on 75 minutes and saw Lavery come on for his debut in place of goalscorer Tubbs.
And the closing stages passed by pretty much incident-free as the Blues secured another three-point haul on the road.
Newport (3-5-2): Day; Partridge, Bennett, Donacien; Barnum-Bobb, O’Sullivan, Byrne (c), Elito, Barrow (Rodman 65); John-Lewis (Collins 65), Ansah (Boden 59)
Subs not used: Taylor, Holmes, Taylor, Klukowski
Pompey (4-2-3-1): McCarey; Davies, Burgess, Webster, Stevens; Doyle (c), Barton (Hollands 68); Naismith (Boco 59), Roberts, Bennett; Tubbs (Lavery 75)
Goals: Tubbs 45+2
Subs not used: Murphy, Clarke, Atangana, Chaplin
Referee: James Adcock (Wayne Barratt 40)
Attendance: 3,298 (1,087 Pompey fans)
Cambridge United 1 v 3 Portsmouth
Pompey continued their impressive away record by battling from behind to claim all three points in an eventful game at Cambridge.
Robbie Simpson controversially fired the hosts ahead early on and that led to frayed tempers which boiled over at the break.
United captain Mark Roberts were dismissed following a scuffle and the Blues made good use of their numerical advantage.
They did the damage with two goals in under two minutes, with Leon Legge inadvertently beating his own keeper before Matt Tubbs fired Pompey ahead.
And it was Tubbs who netted again just before the end to make sure that the visitors returned home with a maximum haul, although Gareth Evans soured the mood slightly when he was sent off late on.
Paul Cook stuck with the same side that drew with Yeovil at Fratton Park the previous week.
The hosts named Sam Beasant – son of former Pompey stopper Dave – between the sticks in their starting line-up.
And Gary Roberts tried to catch him out straight from kick-off with a shot from inside his own half that the keeper was wise to.
Aaron McCarey then had come off his line at the other end to punch clear a dangerous Cambridge cross.
But the hosts did take the lead on four minutes – although the Blues were furious that the goal was allowed to stand.
A flag was raised when Simpson raced onto Luke Berry’s pass and slotted home, but – after speaking with his assistant – referee Sebastian Stockbridge ruled in favour of the hosts.
Pompey soon settled into their usual patient passing game and a number of precise crosses were causing United problems, with Ben Davies a particular threat.
But they were unable to make that pressure count by testing Beasant, who had no more than a couple of half-chances from distance to deal with.
The cheers from the travelling supporters were instead of the ironic variety whenever an offside decision went their way.
Roberts was doing his best to find a way through and also tried his luck with a 35-yard pile-driver that fizzed over the crossbar.
He created a promising opportunity by dispossessing Elliot Omozusi on 32 minutes, only for Evans to waste it by firing wildly across the face of goal.
But there were to be no more major moments of drama until after the half-time whistle was blown.
A scuffle then broke out between the two teams and assistant manager Leam Richardson came onto the pitch to usher his players away and down the tunnel.
In the melee, Cambridge skipper Roberts pushed McCarey to the ground and was sent off by Stockbridge, while Richardson was ordered to watch the rest of the game from the stands.
Half Time: Cambridge 1 Pompey 0
It was the 10-man hosts who were first to threaten when the game restarted and McCarey was down quickly to smother Ryan Donaldson’s effort.
Pompey immediately had a chance down at the other end, but Kyle Bennett could not guide Enda Stevens’ cross on target.
Cambridge were sitting increasingly deeper as the Blues tried to find a way through and Bennett forced a decent stop from Beasant just past the hour mark.
Cook made his first switch on 66 minutes and it was certainly an unusual move, with Adam Webster replacing Matt Clarke and Burgess moving up front.
And, within the space of just a few seconds, Pompey had scored twice to turn the game completely on its head.
The first came when United defender LEGGE, under pressure from Tubbs, steered a decent Evans cross into his own net.
And the large away following were in dreamland moments later, as TUBBS showed his poacher’s instinct to convert Roberts’ pass from close range.
Burgess immediately dropped back into defence and a second substitution followed on 75 minutes, with Kal Naismith replacing Bennett.
Pompey did not have too much to deal with at the other end as they looked to see out the rest of the game.
And they even managed to grab a third goal in fortunate fashion late on, with a clearance hitting Naismith and rebounding off the bar for TUBBS to head home.
The only sour note was a stoppage-time dismissal for Evans, who was shown a straight red card for a late challenge on Omozusi.
Cambridge (4-4-2): Beasant; Omozusi, Legge, Roberts (c), Demetriou; Donaldson (Newton 73), Berry, Hughes, Dunk (Morrissey 83); Corr, Simpson (Taft 46)
Goals: Simpson 4
Sent off: Roberts
Booked: Corr, Newton
Subs not used: Taylor, Hughes, Gaffney, Akintunde
Pompey (4-2-3-1): McCarey; Davies, Burgess, Clarke (Webster 65), Stevens; Barton (Atangana 89), Doyle (c); Evans, Roberts, Bennett (Naismith 75); Tubbs
Goals: Legge 67 (og), Tubbs 68, 87
Sent off: Evans
Subs not used: Bass, Haunstrup, Hollands, Chaplin
Referee: Sebastian Stockbridge
Attendance: 6,607 (1,866 Pompey fans)
Luton Town 1 v 2 Portsmouth
Matt Tubbs came off the bench to grab a late winner at Luton as Pompey continued their unbeaten start to the league campaign.
Gareth Evans had given the Blues an early lead, only for Craig Mackail-Smith to cancel it out from the penalty spot.
It looked like the game was heading for a stalemate, until Tubbs popped up late on to send the large travelling support wild with delight.
Jayden Stockley came in as the lone striker in the Blues’ usual 4-2-3-1 system, with Tubbs dropping to the bench.
The visitors enjoyed plenty of possession in the opening stages, without being able to carve out a decent opening.
But they broke the deadlock with their first proper chance on eight minutes – although there was a slice of fortune involved.
Enda Stevens’ cross was cleared by former Pompey trainee Luke Wilkinson, but the ball ricocheted straight into his team-mate Scott Cuthbert and fell kindly for EVANS to slam home.
The lead did not last long, however, as Nigel Atangana barged into Josh McQuoid in the box and referee Peter Bankes pointed straight to the spot.
Mackail-Smith stepped up to take the penalty and confidently slotted the ball into the bottom corner.
After that frenetic opening, the game suddenly fell a bit flat, with the Blues unable to find the attacking fluidity that had been so evident in previous games.
Kyle Bennett did look dangerous when he burst down the left on 21 minutes, but Elliot Justham was quickly off his line to prevent Stockley from making a connection.
They soon received a let-off at the other end, though, when a poor touch from Christian Burgess forced Brian Murphy to exit his area and head clear.
Ryan Hall picked up the loose ball and surged into the box, only for Pompey’s keeper to make a quick recovery and smother the danger.
Bankes would then have breathed a sigh of relief on 34 minutes when he inadvertently intercepted Evans’ pass, but Cameron McGeehan fired wide to spare the official’s blushes.
The game suddenly livened up just before the break and Justham held a curling effort from Bennett before Mackail-Smith headed a Stephen O’Donnell cross wide.
Justham then did well to deny Stockley from close range, but had a simpler task in keeping out Gary Roberts’ angled shot.
Half Time: Luton 1 Pompey 1
It was the hosts who started the second half brighter, although it took until 54 minutes for them to create a serious scoring opportunity.
Pompey would have been responsible for their own downfall, however, after a mix-up between Burgess and his defensive partner Matt Clarke.
Mackail-Smith picked up the loose ball as Luton bore down on goal, but his pass for McGeehan was not quite right and the midfielder fired wide.
The Blues soon carved out a chance of their own as Stockley bent in a dangerous low cross that was just out of reach for the onrushing Evans.
Evans then met a Bennett corner with a glancing header that was heading for the bottom corner until a well-placed Olly Lee cleared it from the line.
Both sides looked capable of grabbing a winner, although it was Pompey who had the next opportunity when Evans was crudely felled by Hall.
Roberts stepped up to take the free-kick from 25 yards out and his effort struck the top of the wall and looped narrowly over the bar.
Cook made his first substitution on 73 minutes as Stockley made way for Tubbs, with Conor Chaplin replacing Bennett moments later.
Both sides continued to show plenty of attacking intent, although some resolute defending meant the goalkeepers were not being overly tested.
But there was still time for a late winner as Chaplin latched on to a long ball and held off a defender to get a shot away.
Justham stuck out an arm to palm clear the teenager’s effort, but TUBBS was on hand to convert the loose ball.
Luton (4-1-4-1): Justham; O’Donnell, Cuthbert (c), Wilkinson, Griffiths; O’Brien (Lee 46); McQuoid, McGeehan, Smith, Hall (Ruddock 82); Mackail-Smith (Marriott 71)
Goals: Mackail-Smith 15 (pen)
Booked: Smith, McGeehan, Wilkinson
Subs not used: Tyler, McNulty, McCourt, Green
Pompey (4-2-3-1): Murphy; Davies, Burgess, Clarke, Stevens; Atangana, Doyle (c); Evans, Roberts (McGurk 82), Bennett (Chaplin 75); Stockley (Tubbs 73)
Goals: Evans 8, Tubbs 90
Subs not used: Jones, Webster, Haunstrup, Hollands
Referee: Peter Bankes
Attendance: 9,083 (1,032 Pompey fans)
|Plymouth Argyle||1 – 2||Portsmouth|
Pompey extended their winning run to three matches thanks to a couple of penalties in Plymouth.
They looked bright early on, but did not go ahead until the stroke of half-time when Enda Stevens was fouled and Matt Tubbs scored from the spot.
Gary Roberts was then brought down late on and stepped up to open his Blues account.
Gregg Wylde immediately reduced the deficit, but the visitors held on to leave the large army of travelling supporters feeling ecstatic.
Paul Cook reverted to the side that beat Dagenham in the league the previous Saturday.
That meant Brian Murphy, Christian Burgess, Stevens, Nigel Atangana, Michael Doyle, Roberts and Tubbs all returned after the midweek Capital One Cup triumph over Derby.
Pompey looked full of confidence following their back-to-back victories and came close to taking the lead in just the second minute.
Gareth Evans burst through the centre, only to be denied first by Plymouth keeper Luke McCormick and then skipper Curtis Nelson.
Kyle Bennett tried his luck from the edge of the box soon after, although McCormick was again equal to it, sticking up a hand to palm the ball over.
It was the Blues looking the more dominant side and Roberts met Evans’ cross with a volley that was deflected over.
The hosts did begin to apply some pressure towards the end of the half, however, and it took a fine save from Murphy to keep out Graham Carey’s fierce volley.
But the action was soon back up the other end and after Tubbs had swiped at thin air when well-placed inside the area, Atangana drilled a low effort straight at McCormick.
It looked the sides would be going in level at the break – however, there was still time for some late drama.
Referee Steve Martin pointed to the spot following a challenge by Hiram Boateng on Stevens and TUBBS stepped up to emphatically smash home the penalty.
Half Time: Plymouth 0 Pompey 1
It was the Blues who were first to threaten after the interval when Evans cut inside from the right and fizzed a shot narrowly wide.
And Tubbs also had an opportunity to grab his second of the afternoon, breaking into the box and flashing an effort past the post.
But the visitors were not looking as fluent as they had been before the break and were guilty of losing possession too easily.
Cook decided to make his first switch on 69 minutes as goalscorer Tubbs made way for Jayden Stockley up top.
The striker made an immediate impact – but not in a good way, as Martin showed him a yellow card for a challenge on Nelson.
Plymouth’s captain made way after being cut above his eye and replacement Ryan Brunt almost levelled, but could only turn Carey’s corner wide.
Another Carey set-piece was swung into the Blues box on 76 minutes and it was agonisingly out of reach for several of his team-mates.
Bennett saw his shot clear the crossbar at the other end as Pompey attempted to stem Plymouth’s attacking tide.
And Stockley came close to increasing the visitors’ lead when he met Roberts’ corner and was only denied by a good low McCormick save.
Victory did seem secure on 86 minutes, however, when Roberts burst into the box and was clumsily tripped by Gary Sawyer.
Martin pointed to the spot for the second time and, with Tubbs off the pitch, ROBERTS stepped up to hammer the ball into the bottom corner.
A stunning volleyed finish from Wylde ensured a nervy finale, but the Blues held on to secure all three points.
Plymouth (4-2-3-1): McCormick; Mellor, Nelson (c) (Brunt 72), Hartley, Sawyer; McHugh, Boateng; Tanner, Carey, Wylde; Reid
Goals: Wylde 89
Booked: Boateng, Mellor, Sawyer
Subs not used: Bittner, Purrington, Cox, Simpson, Bentley, Harvey
Pompey (4-2-3-1): Murphy; Davies, Burgess, Clarke, Stevens; Atangana (Hollands 71), Doyle (c); Evans, Roberts (McGurk 90), Bennett; Tubbs (Stockley 69)
Goals: Tubbs 45+2 (pen), Roberts 86 (pen)
Booked: Davies, Stockley, Hollands
Subs not used: Jones, Webster, Haunstrup, Chaplin
Referee: Steve Martin
Attendance: 11,476 (1,719 Pompey fans)
Bognor 1 – 1 Portsmouth
Matt Tubbs was on target in sunny Sussex as Pompey continued their pre-season programme with a 1-1 draw at Bognor.
The striker completed a flowing attacking move to give the visitors an early advantage against their non-league opponents at Nyewood Lane.
But they were dealt a double blow as Gary Roberts went off injured at half-time before Alfie Rutherford secured a share of the spoils.
Pompey lined up in Cook’s favoured 4-2-3-1 formation and immediately set about trying to pass their way through the Rocks defence.
They were enjoying plenty of possession and Roberts saw a shot deflected inches past the post in the opening stages.
Teenage Blues keeper Alex Bass had been loaned to the hosts and his first piece of action was to claim a Christian Burgess header from the resulting corner.
But the Blues broke the deadlock thanks to a fine flowing move on eight minutes.
Michael Doyle’s incisive pass sent Enda Stevens clear down the right and he squared the ball for TUBBS to roll home.
The striker almost doubled the advantage moments later when he met Gareth Evans’ knock-down at the far post, only to be denied by a last-gasp Craig Robson challenge.
There were further half-chances from both Evans and Tubbs as the visitors continued to dominate as the half progressed.
But Bognor then, out of the blue, created a couple of excellent opportunities, with skipper Jason Prior’s acrobatic bicycle kick narrowly missing the target.
Stuart Green was next to go close, courtesy of a fiercely-struck volley from the edge of the box that crashed against the crossbar.
Half-Time: Bognor 0 Pompey 1
Cook made just one change at the start of the second half, with Roberts – who picked up an injury just before the break – making way for Adam McGurk.
Pompey did not look as fluid as they had before the interval, with the chances drying up at both ends.
But Bognor found themselves level on 57 minutes when Rutherford stole the ball from Paul Robinson and coolly stroked the ball past Paul Jones.
The Blues immediately went on the attack, with both Evans and Doyle narrowly failing to find the target.
McGurk had a better opening on 65 minutes, but could only fire straight at Rocks keeper Lyall Beazley after cutting inside from the right.
Goalscorer Tubbs was then withdrawn, with triallist Theo Robinson replacing him in the Pompey attack.
However, it was Doyle who came close to restoring their advantage on 75 minutes with a bending effort that beat Beazley’s dive, but also the post.
The Blues continued to push forward in search of a late winner, but the Rocks were resilient and held on for a draw.
Bognor (4-4-2): Bass (Beazley 46); Crane, Robson, El-Abd, Wollers (Horncastle 70); Parsons (Pearce 56), Green, Thomson (Sanders 52), Tuck (Beck 56); Prior (c) (Rowlatt 76), Dodd (Rutherford 46)
Goals: Rutherford 57
Pompey: Jones; Davies, P.Robinson (c) (Nilsen 86), Burgess (Field 86), Stevens; Atangana, Doyle; Roberts (McGurk 46), Bennett, Evans (Hassan 87); Tubbs (T.Robinson 66)
Goals: Tubbs 8
Subs not used: Poke, Haunstrup, Close
Referee: Ashley Slaughter