Oct 042016
 

EFL Trophy


 

Portsmouth    2

 


 

Reading U23    2

 


Blues lose penalty shoot out

Curtis Main bagged a brace as Pompey fought from two goals down to draw with Reading U23s in the Checkatrade Trophy.

But it was the visitors who claimed a bonus point by winning a marathon penalty shoot-out, despite the heroics of goalkeeper Liam O’Brien.

Andrija Novakovich’s early finish and a Joseph Mendes penalty looked to have secured victory for the visitors.

But Main struck twice – the second of which was a fine first time finish – to haul the Blues level at a sparsely-populated Fratton Park.

The match attracted a crowd of just 1,355 – comfortably Pompey’s lowest post-war attendance for a competitive home fixture.

Paul Cook rung the changes for their second group stage fixture, with Matt Clarke the only player to keep his place from Saturday’s league defeat to Doncaster.

But they got off to a poor start, with the visitors breaking the deadlock after just six minutes.

Mendes showed blistering pace to latch onto Liam Kelly’s pass and coolly laid the ball back for Novakovich to slot home.

Most of the first half action then took place at the other end of the pitch, although the Blues never really tested keeper Anssi Jaakkola.

Thomas McIntyre did well to nip in and intercept a threaded pass from skipper Kyle Bennet before it could reach Michael Smith.

The two Blues players combined well again moments later, but after swapping neat passes the striker scuffed his shot wide.

Bennett then teed-up Adam Buxton down the right and the full-back’s cross had to be diverted behind by Danzell Gravenberch with Main waiting to pounce.

Pompey’s best chance of the half fell to Milan Lalkovic on 23 minutes, with his goal-bound effort just about scrambled to safety.

The Royals did threaten at the other end moments later, but O’Brien was able to gather Dominic Samuel’s fierce low drive at the other end.

And Ben Close hit a similarly powerful shot of his own, only for the ball to narrowly clear the crossbar.

But the Blues were dealt a blow just before the break when Buxton went down following a 50/50 challenge and had to be replaced by Gareth Evans.


Half Time

(0 – 1)


Pompey had a chance to level moments after the restart, but Jaakkola was wise to Evans’ neat flick after Bennett had sent a corner towards the near post.

Instead, they found themselves further behind when referee Oli Langford spotted an Amine Linganzi handball in the box.

Mendes stepped up to take the spot-kick and smashed the ball high into the net, giving O’Brien – who guessed the right way – no chance.

It did not take long for the hosts to reduce their deficit, however, as MAIN slid in to squeeze Evans’ cross past Jaakkola.

And it was MAIN who drew the Blues level just past the hour mark, converting Bennett’s pass with a fine first time finish into the bottom corner.

The striker was denied the chance to complete his hat-trick, though, as he was soon withdrawn for Kal Naismith.

Reading still had chances of their own as the game entered its closing stages and O’Brien got down well to save Novakovich’s deflected effort.

It was Pompey looking the more threatening, however, and Smith was inches away from meeting Naismith’s teasing cross.

Jaakkola then failed to hold substitute Adam May’s thumping strike and was relieved to see the ball land safe.

And it took a vital last-gasp challenge from Gravenberch to prevent Smith from being sent clear by Bennett’s incisive pass.

But the Royals wasted a glorious opportunity to snatch a stoppage-time winner when an unmarked Tyler Frost fired straight at O’Brien from just a few yards out.

That meant a penalty shoot-out would be held to see which team walked away with an additional point.

Smith, Naismith and Evans all scored, but Jaakkola denied both Bennett and Lalkovic and it looked like that was that.

O’Brien made a couple of stops of his own to take it to sudden death, however – and made another fine save to keep out Tennai Watson’s effort.

But May and Jack Whatmough both failed to beat Jaakkola, allowing Frost the chance to secure Reading an additional point.

Pompey (4-4-2): O’Brien; Buxton (Evans 44), Whatmough, Clarke, Haunstrup; Bennett (c), Linganzi, Close (May 73), Lalkovic; Smith, Main (Naismith 69)
Goals: Main 57, 63
Subs not used: Hall, T.Davies, Oxlade-Chamberlain

Reading U23 (4-4-2): Jaakkola (c); Watson, Gravenberch, McIntyre (Griffin 18), Blackett; Rinomhota, Frost, Kelly, Samuel; Novakovic (Richards 78), Mendes
Goals: Novakovic 6, Mendes 52 (pen)
Booked: Rinomhota
Subs not used: Moore, Vancooten, East, Bennett, Cardwell

Referee: Oli Langford

Attendance: 1,355 (133 away fans)


Portsmouth FC

Aug 312016
 
IN



Dominic Hyam

(20)
Reading


Blues bring in Reading defender

Pompey have signed defender Dominic Hyam on loan from Reading until January 8.

The 20-year-old is currently away on international duty with Scotland under-21s, who have matches against Macedonia on Thursday and Ukraine next Tuesday.

He is a graduate of the Royals’ youth set-up and has yet to make his senior bow for the Championship side.

But Hyam has previously gained first team experience with a number of loan spells and made 16 appearances for Dagenham last season.

Portsmouth FC
Aug 252015
 

Portsmouth 1 v 2 Reading

Conor Chaplin’s fine finish could not keep Pompey in the Capital One Cup, as Reading fought from behind to claim a narrow second round victory.

The teenager capped an impressive first half team performance by giving the hosts a deserved interval lead.

But the Championship side were much improved after the break and Nick Blackman drew them level before substitute Garath McCleary grabbed a late winner.

Paul Cook made eight changes from the side that drew with Morecambe in the league at the weekend.

Matt Clarke, Kyle Bennett and Gareth Evans – now being deployed at right-back – were the only survivors.

Saturday’s last-gasp goal hero Jayden Stockley came in up top, while Paul Jones took his place between the sticks.

There were also starts for Brandon Haunstrup and Adam Webster at the back and Ben Close, Danny Hollands, Adam McGurk and Chaplin in midfield.

It was an open start to proceedings, with both sides looking to get forward without creating any clear-cut chances.

Simon Cox sent a couple of shots off target for the visitors – wearing their distinctive African violet away kit – while Ali Al-Habsi did well to claim a McGurk cross before it could reach Stockley at the far post.

Jones did well to stop the Royals opening the scoring midway through the half when he denied Blackman from point-blank range.

Stockley then should have put Pompey ahead on 27 minutes after Bennett had collected a neat chipped pass from Hollands.

The winger showed great skill on the left and sent in a perfect cross for Stockley, who somehow managed to fire wide from just a few yards out.

Reading then broke quickly up the other end of the pitch and Jones was quickly off his line to deny Hal Robson-Kanu.

The visitors went close again on 37 minutes when Jones palmed away Chris Gunter’s cross and Cox hooked the loose ball over.

Instead it was Pompey who forged ahead moments later – thanks to a fine finish from CHAPLIN.

Al-Habsi beat the teenager to Hollands’ long pass, but made a complete mess of his attempted clearance.

Chaplin was forced out wide, but kept his composure to find the net with a fierce finish from the tightest of angles.

Half Time: Pompey 1 Reading 0

Pompey were not content to sit back on their lead once the second half got back underway.

The hosts made some promising incursions into their opponents’ area, while Al-Habsi did well to beat Webster to a dangerous Bennett cross.

Reading did threaten with a neat passing move just past the hour mark, but it ended with Danny Williams firing harmlessly over.

And the visitors were level on 64 minutes when Blackman cut inside from the right and slotted a neat finish into the bottom corner.

It was the Royals who were now looking the more threatening side and Clarke made a good block to deny Robson-Kanu.

Cook switched things up on 79 minutes, bringing on James Dunne for his first appearance of the season in place of McGurk, with Chaplin making way for Ben Tollitt soon after.

But it was a Reading substitute who made an impact by firing the visitors ahead, as McCleary was left alone to convert at the far post following some good build-up between Robson-Kanu and Stephen Quinn.

Matt Tubbs replaced Bennett for the final few minutes, but the Blues were unable to find a leveller and it was Reading who took their place in the third round draw.

Pompey (4-2-3-1): Jones; Evans, Webster, Clarke, Haunstrup; Close, Hollands (c); McGurk (Dunne 79), Chaplin (Tollitt 83), Bennett (Tubbs 89); Stockley
Goals: Chaplin 40
Subs not used: Murphy, Burgess, Atangana, Roberts

Reading (4-1-4-1): Al-Habsi; Gunter, Hector (c), Ferdinand, Obita; Norwood; Blackman (McShane 89), Williams (Tshibola 90+2), Quinn, Robson-Kanu; Cox (McCleary 69)
Goals: Blackman 64, McCleary 84
Booked: Robson-Kanu, Norwood, Williams
Subs not used: Moore, Stacey, Fernandez, Sa

Referee: Gavin Ward

Attendance: 18,190 (2,082 away fans)

Portsmouth FC