Apr 182022
 

Portsmouth FC 2021/2022


A League 1
Morecambe 1
Portsmouth 1


FORM GUIDE

DRAWN WON WON LOST DRAWN DRAWN LOST DRAWN WON WON

Pompey were denied a third successive League One victory after conceding deep into stoppage-time at Morecambe.

A moment of magic from Sean Raggett looked to be enough to earn all three points for the battling Blues.

But substitute Jonah Ayunga controversially converted in a congested penalty area right at the death to boost the Shrimps’ hopes of beating the drop.

Danny Cowley made three changes from the side that secured a dramatic win over Lincoln on Good Friday.

Ronan Curtis was rewarded for coming off the bench to net the winner, while there were also starts for Ryan Tunnicliffe and Shaun Williams.

Aiden O’Brien and Louis Thompson dropped to the bench and Joe Morrell missed out completely after going off early against the Imps with a dead leg.

Trevor Carson started between the sticks for the home side, who had fellow former Fratton loanee Toumani Diagouraga on the bench.

The visitors started brightly and when Clark Robertson nodded the ball down, Raggett had a shot blocked and Tunnicliffe then fired over.

But it was Morecambe who began to look more threatening and Dylan Connolly bent the ball inches past the post after Cole Stockton’s pass sent him racing away.

Williams tried his luck at the other end of the pitch, but although his effort was cleanly struck, it flew straight into Carson’s arms.

Pompey then had Gavin Bazunu to thank for a series of smart stops that prevented the home side from forging ahead.

He just about got his fingertips to a low Arthur Gnahoua shot to tip the ball against the inside of the post, where it then ricocheted to safety.

And the keeper was at it again moments later to prevent Stockton from turning home a Greg Leigh delivery.

The danger was not over, though, and Bazunu had to recover quickly to save the striker’s follow-up effort with his feet.

It was not until the end of the first half that the Blues began to find a bit of rhythm and pass the ball around with fluidity.

And they made their late pressure count when Robertson lifted a pass into the box and Curtis rose to nod it into the mixer.

The ball fell to the feet of RAGGETT, who brought it under control and spun before hooking a superb shot against the upright and into the net.


Half Time

Morecambe 0

Portsmouth 1


Leigh threatened for the hosts once the action restarted, but after doing the hard work to get into a good position, he dragged his effort wide

George Hirst then got forward at the other end and bent an attempt narrowly off target in a lively opening to the half.

But the Blues were almost undone in comical fashion on 54 minutes when there was hesitation over who should deal with a pass through the defence.

Bazunu eventually came out to clear and kicked the ball against Gnahoua, with the ricochet sending it inches past the post.

Ousmane Fane then teed up Stockton with a square pass across the edge of the box, only for the striker to fire straight at Bazunu.

Cowley responded with a couple of changes just past the hour mark, as Williams and Michael Jacobs made way for Thompson and O’Brien.

Pompey were looking for a second goal and Hirst fired a low shot wide after doing well to nab possession on the edge of the box.

A final throw of the dice from Cowley came on 72 minutes, with Mahlon Romeo on for Marcus Harness.

That came after a Bazunu clearance had been charged down by Adam Phillips and the ball flew wide, while the Morecambe midfielder then wastefully shot wide after being found by Stockton.

The hosts stepped up the pressure in search of a late leveller and Diagouraga thought he had found one, only for referee Robert Madley to spot a hand being used as the ball was bundled into the net.

But they were finally able to celebrate deep into stoppage-time when Bazunu came to collect a Leigh corner.

He was unable to hold on amidst a sea of bodies, though, and Ayunga forced the ball home, with Madley ignoring Pompey appeals for what looked to be a foul.

Morecambe (4-1-4-1): Carson; Leigh, Bennett, Bedeau, Gibson; Fane (McCalmont 77); Connolly (Diagouraga 68), Phillips, Wildig (c) (Ayunga 60), Gnahoua; Stockton
Goals: Ayunga 90+3
Booked: Leigh
Subs not used: Smith, Cooney, O’Connor, McLoughlin

Pompey (4-2-3-1): Bazunu; Carter, Raggett, Roberson (c), Ogilvie; Tunnicliffe, Williams (Thompson 63); Harness (Romeo 72), Curtis, Jacobs (O’Brien 64); Hirst
Goals: Raggett 41
Subs not used: Webber, Vincent, Mingi, Walker

Referee: Robert Madley

Attendance: 4,893 (806 Pompey fans)

Mar 052022
 

Portsmouth FC 2021/2022


H League 1
Portsmouth 4
Accrington Stanley 0


FORM GUIDE

WON WON DRAWN WON WON WON LOST LOST LOST DRAWN

Pompey maintained their run of fine form by thrashing Accrington at Fratton Park – despite playing much of the contest with just 10 men.

George Hirst had provided an early lead, but the afternoon threatened to unravel when Marcus Harness was dismissed midway through the first half.

Instead, however, the Blues merely stepped up their performance and Sean Raggett’s header gave them a healthy advantage at the break.

Stanley tried their best to battle back, but further goals from Hirst and the impressive Ryan Tunnicliffe wrapped up a comfortable victory.

Danny Cowley made two changes from the side that fought from behind to beat Oxford on home soil earlier in the week.

Tunnicliffe and skipper Clark Robertson both returned to the starting line-up, as Joe Morrell and Denver Hume dropped to the bench.

The visitors almost enjoyed a perfect start, as a long-range effort from Josh Woods dipped narrowly over the crossbar.

A corner routine then saw Tunnicliffe send in a fine delivery, but Accrington had too many bodies back for a shot to get through to test Toby Savin.

But the breakthrough did arrive for the Blues on 16 minutes after a quick counter from a Stanley corner.

Mahlon Romeo combined well with Harness on the right and cut the ball back for HIRST to divert into the bottom corner.

It quickly went from ecstasy to agony for the Fratton faithful, though, as they were reduced to 10 men.

Harness made a reckless two-footed challenge from behind on Ross Sykes and referee Carl Brook immediately reached for his back pocket to show a red card.

Pompey were still looking to attack despite that setback and it took a fine sliding challenge from Michael Nottingham to prevent Hirst getting a shot away.

But a second goal did arrive from the resulting corner, as RAGGETT rose above Sykes to emphatically convert a Tunnicliffe cross.

Accrington tried their best to get back into the contest, but the hosts were defending resolutely, with one fine interception from Hayden Carter drawing warm applause.

There were a couple of nervy moments late in the half, however, and Gavin Bazunu twice had to come to the rescue.

He got down quickly to deal with a low Woods drive and then made an even better stop to deny Rosaire Longelo, who had been left in far too much space from a corner.


Half Time

Portsmouth 2

Accrington Stanley 0


The home side were fuming soon after the restart, when Harry Pell – who had been brought off the bench – scythed down Louis Thompson.

He was only shown a yellow card for the challenge, with Pompey players understandably pointing out the official’s earlier punishment for Harness.

The boos turned to cheers on 56 minutes, though, as the hosts extended their advantage even further.

It was similar to the second goal, with HIRST this time the man to barge past Sykes and emphatically convert a Tunnicliffe corner.

Pompey’s set-pieces were causing plenty of problems and another Tunnicliffe flag-kick was unconvincingly palmed away by Savin.

Accrington were trying to cause threats of their own and Pell’s looping header had to be tipped over by Bazunu.

They went even closer from the resulting corner, as Sykes’ effort was blocked and the ball pinged around the box before being fired wide.

But, incredibly, it was the Blues who scored again on 69 minutes and it was all down to some great play from Aiden O’Brien.

He picked up the ball inside his own half and ran up the pitch, bursting between Sykes and Ethan Hamilton before cutting back for TUNNICLIFFE to fire home.

Cowley used his bench to bring some fresh legs on, as Thompson and Hirst made way for Morrell and Tyler Walker.

And there was even time for Jay Mingi to come on for his debut in place of O’Brien, who has already become a fans’ favourite on the south coast.

Accrington saw plenty of the ball during the closing stages, but the Blues remained resolute to add a clean sheet to their three points.

Pompey (3-4-1-2): Bazunu; Carter, Raggett, Robertson (c); Romeo, Tunnicliffe, Thompson (Morrell 72), Ogilvie; Harness; O’Brien (Mingi 78), Hirst (Walker 73)
Goals: Hirst 16, 56, Raggett 28, Tunnicliffe 69
Sent off: Harness
Booked: Robertson, Romeo
Subs not used: Webber, Vincent, Hume, Jewitt-White

Accrington (3-4-1-2): Savin; Sykes, Nottingham, Amankwah (Longelo 34); Rodgers (Leigh 52), Conneely (c) (Pell 46), Butcher, McConville; Hamilton; Woods, Bishop
Booked: Pell, Nottingham
Subs not used: Isherwood, Rich-Baghuelou, Morgan, Adedoyin

Referee: Carl Brook

Attendance: 15,091 (144 away fans)

Mar 012022
 

Portsmouth FC 2021/2022


H League 1
Portsmouth 3
Oxford United 2


FORM GUIDE

WON DRAWN WON WON WON LOST LOST LOST DRAWN LOST

Pompey increased their unbeaten run to five games by seeing off Oxford in a compelling contest at a damp Fratton Park.

They fell behind to an early Marcus Browne strike, only for Sean Raggett and George Hirst to both net just before the interval.

A stunning Hayden Carter strike left them cruising after the break, only for Luke McNally’s late goal to ensure a fingernail-chewing finale.

Danny Cowley made five changes from the side that dramatically drew with Fleetwood at the weekend.

Aiden O’Brien was rewarded for his last-gasp leveller from the bench by coming into the starting line-up.

And the forward was joined in the team by Connor Ogilvie, Mahlon Romeo, Louis Thompson and Hirst.

Clark Robertson, Ryan Tunnicliffe and Tyler Walker all dropped to the bench, while Reeco Hackett missed out through injury and Ronan Curtis began a two-match ban.

There were familiar faces in the opposition ranks, as Ryan Williams and Steve Seddon both started, with Simon Eastwood named on the Oxford bench.

For the second time in the matter of days, Pompey were caught napping in the early stages and found themselves behind.

Nathan Holland slipped a pass through to Browne, who showed some neat footwork before angling home a fierce shot.

The hosts tried to hit back and began to dominate possession, without making a breakthrough in the final third.

And the Blues were growing increasingly frustrated at the amount of time their opponents were taking over every set-piece.

They kept persevering, although it looked like the interval would arrive without Jack Stevens having to make a meaningful touch between the sticks.

But Pompey found themselves level late in the first half after Denver Hume played the ball across the edge of the box.

It was collected by Joe Morrell and he lifted a cross into the centre, where RAGGETT rose to power home a fine header.

And it got even better in stoppage-time, as HIRST timed his run perfectly to collect a Marcus Harness pass and coolly slotted the ball into the bottom corner.


Half Time

Portsmouth 2

Oxford United 1


The visitors felt they should have had a penalty shortly after the restart, as Matty Taylor went down under Thompson’s challenge, but their appeals received short shrift from referee Sam Allison.

Pompey took some time to find their feet again, but extended their lead thanks to a superb strike on 58 minutes.

Oxford could only clear the ball as far as CARTER, who saw plenty of space in front of him to take a couple of touches before firing home an unstoppable 25-yard strike.

The lead was now comfortable, but the points were certainly not guaranteed and Gavin Bazunu got down sharply to his left when Sam Long hooked the ball towards the bottom corner.

Cowley made a switch to add some fresh defensive legs on 73 minutes, as Hume made way for Robertson.

And they almost wrapped things up moments later, when Hirst got on the end of O’Brien’s cross with a firm header that Stevens somehow kept out from point-blank range.

Another change immediately followed, with Harness withdrawn and Tunnicliffe handed an opportunity to impress in the closing stages.

It was looking like being a comfortable conclusion to the evening, but Oxford threw a spanner in the works.

With just under 10 minutes remaining, Sam Baldock cut the ball back for McNally to fire home and ensure a nervy conclusion.

But, backed by a noisy Fratton faithful, the Blues managed to see out the closing stages to put another three points on the board.

Pompey (3-4-3): Bazunu; Carter, Raggett (c), Ogilvie; Romeo, Morrell, Thompson, Hume (Robertson 73); Harness (Tunnicliffe 75), Hirst (Walker 84), O’Brien
Goals: Raggett 42, Hirst 45+2, Carter 58
Booked: Carter
Subs not used: Webber, Vincent, Jewitt-White, Mingi

Oxford (3-4-1-2): Stevens; McNally, Long, Brown; Williams, Kane, Brannagan (c), Seddon (Whyte 64); Holland (Forde 82); Browne (Baldock 64), Taylor
Goals: Browne 3, McNally 81
Booked: Long
Subs not used: Eastwood, Mousinho, McGuane, Henry

Referee: Sam Allison

Attendance: 15,113 (1,370 away fans)

Feb 122022
 

Portsmouth FC 2021/2022


H League 1
Portsmouth 4
Doncaster Rovers 0


FORM GUIDE

WON WON LOST LOST LOST DRAWN LOST LOST WON DRAWN

Pompey produced a ruthless second half display to blow away bottom-of-the-table Doncaster at Fratton Park.

The opening 45 minutes were distinctly forgettable, but it was a completely different story after the interval.

A firm header from Reeco Hackett opened the scoring and the lead was soon doubled by George Hirst.

Aiden O’Brien then came off the bench for his home debut and instantly found the net to leave Rovers deflated.

But there was still time for the superb Sean Raggett to head home deep into stoppage-time to double his tally for the week.

Danny Cowley made three changes from the side that saw off Burton, also on home soil, earlier in the week.

Marcus Harness returned in an unfamiliar wing-back role on the right, while Hackett occupied the opposite flag.

Skipper Clark Robertson came into the back three, as Connor Ogilvie, Mahlon Romeo and Denver Hume all dropped to the bench.

The contest took a while to liven up and half-chances were the order of the day for much of the first period.

Michael Jacobs was crowded out as he tried to get a shot away, while Josh Martin’s free-kick at the other end somehow evaded everyone on its way out of play.

The visitors were first to seriously threaten, courtesy of a Reo Griffiths effort that was gathered by Gavin Bazunu at the second attempt.

Louis Thompson then released Harness on the right and his low centre flew agonisngly behind three of his team-mates in the box.

But Rovers almost broke the deadlock on 26 minutes and it took an excellent Raggett clearance to deny them.

Matt Smith combined well with Tommy Rowe to tee-up Joe Dodoo, whose close-range shot was heading for the net until the Pompey defender managed to get it clear.

Jonathan Mitchell then made a couple of regulation saves to deny first Hirst and soon after the in-form Jacobs.

There was a moment of controversy just before the break when Ronan Curtis went down in the box under pressure from a couple of defenders, but referee Tom Reeves ignored his appeals.


Half Time

Portsmouth 0

Doncaster Rovers 0


Hackett swung in a great delivery shortly after the restart, with Joseph Olowu doing just enough to put off Hirst and stop the striker making a connection.

Raggett was then called upon to make another brave block inside the area, this time from Martin’s shot.

But it was the Blues who finally broke the deadlock on 56 minutes, when Harness swung in an excellent cross from the right.

Hirst was unable to get on the end of it, but HACKETT got above Kyle Knoyle at the back post to find the net with a bullet header.

And things got even better for the hosts just past the hour mark after Ben Jackson nodded the ball straight into the path of HIRST.

The striker superbly brought the ball under control and raced clear before squeezing a shot past Mitchell.

Cowley freshened things up with a substitution soon after, as Tyler Walker made way for Ryan Tunnicliffe.

With the pressure eased, Pompey started to play some neat passing football and a Jacobs curler was held by Mitchell following Tunnicliffe’s exquisite flick.

The hosts were looking to wrap things up and Mitchell just about managed to prevent Harness from finding the net from an acute angle.

January arrival O’Brien was handed a run out for the final 10 minutes, as Jacobs made way to warm applause.

And O’BRIEN marked his Fratton bow by putting the result beyond doubt just a few seconds later, beating Knoyle to bundle Curtis’ low centre over the line.

Cowley’s final switch saw the livewire Thompson make way for Ogilvie, but still the Blues looked to attack.

It took the fingertips to Mitchell to stop them scoring again, as he turned behind a long-range Curtis free-kick.

Doncaster looked like all their energy had been sapped clear and the Blues controlled the closing stages.

And they put the cherry on the cake right at the death, as a fine free-kick into the box by Hackett was firmly nodded home by RAGGETT.

Pompey (3-4-3): Bazunu; Carter, Raggett, Robertson (c); Harness, Thompson (Ogilvie 83), Jacobs (O’Brien 80), Hackett; Curtis, Harness, Walker (Tunnicliffe 67)
Goals: Hackett 56, Hirst 63, O’Brien 81, Raggett 90+5
Booked: Thompson
Subs not used: Webber, Romeo, Jewitt-White, Hume

Doncaster (4-1-4-1): Mitchell; Knoyle, Younger, Olowu, Jackson (Agard 70); Gardner; Griffiths, Smith, Rowe (c), Martin (Barlow 78); Dodoo (Odubeko 60)
Subs not used: Jones, Williams, Seaman, Clayton

Referee: Tom Reeves

Attendance: 14,767 (295 away fans)

Feb 082022
 

Portsmouth FC 2021/2022


H League 1
Portsmouth 2
Burton Albion 1


FORM GUIDE

WON LOST LOST LOST DRAWN LOST LOST WON DRAWN WON

Pompey finally registered their first League One victory of 2022 by seeing off stubborn Burton at Fratton Park.

It was a deserved outcome, although the hosts probably should have made life easier for themselves following a dominant first half display.

Sean Raggett headed them in front and Michael Jacobs continued his fine individual form by doubling the leas before the break.

But former Fratton loanee Gassan Ahadme reduced Albion’s deficit shortly after the restart, meaning the rest of the contest was nervier than it might have been.

Danny Cowley made two enforced changes from the side that were cruelly beaten at Oxford at the weekend.

Joe Morrell saw his appeal for a harsh sending off dismissed, so began a three-match ban and made way for Tyler Walker.

The other switch was like-for-like, as Mahlon Romeo recovered from an ankle injury to replace Kieron Freeman, who was suffering from concussion.

Pompey came tearing out of the blocks and there were just 35 seconds on the clock when they had a chance to opening scoring.

Hayden Carter got free and found Ronan Curtis, who escaped one challenge before seeing his effort deflected wide.

Jacobs then found space to get forward and hit a low shot that was parried clear by Ben Garratt, with William Kokolo mopping up the loose ball.

The resulting corner was sent into the mixer by Jacobs, but Connor Ogilvie could only get a glancing touch.

There was a drop in pace after that flurry of activity, with the match turning into a slightly cagey affair.

But the Blues started to get back on top and a lovely ball from George Hirst started an attack, but he could only head over when the cross came in from Jacobs.

The pair combined again moments later, swapping passes in the area before the Leicester loanee’s shot was deflected behind.

And it was from the resulting corner that the deadlock was broken, as RAGGETT rose highest to head home Jacobs’ delivery.

It came as no surprise to see that man JACOBS double the lead before the break, catching Joe Powell dithering and nipping in to slot the ball past Garratt.

Burton did have an opportunity to reduce their deficit before the whistle blew, with Gavin Bazunu having to get down to deal with Ciaran Gilligan’s strike.


Half Time

Portsmouth 2

Burton Albion 0


The hosts looked to keep attacking once the action restarted, only for their opponents to find a lifeline.

Mahlon Romeo and Carter got in each other’s way as the ball ran across the box and Terry Taylor’s angled effort was turned home by Gassan.

Powell then tried to sneak a free-kick inside Bazunu’s near post, but was unable to keep his effort down.

Pompey were struggling to replicate the attacking fluency on display at times before the break, although a Jacobs corner caused problems in Brewers box before eventually being hacked clear.

And they came close to restoring their two-goal lead on 67 minutes after Louis Thompson’s persistence had found Jacobs in space.

His low centre was only cleared as far as Curtis, whose shot was turned over the bar by the leg of Garratt.

The keeper then came off his line to deny Walker a first Blues goal after the ball had been flicked on by Hirst.

But Burton had a chance of their own moments later, with Ogilvie having to time his tackle to perfection to dispossess Harry Chapman inside the box.

Cowley then decided to add some fresh legs in the midfield engine room, as Thompson made way for Ryan Tunnicliffe.

And a second substitution followed soon after, with Denver Hume replaced on the left by Reeco Hackett.

There were comical scenes when a decision went against the visitors, leading to their manager Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink throwing his papers in the air and jumping up in frustration.

He was shown a yellow card for his outburst by referee Craig Hicks, while Clark Robertson came on for Jacobs during the pause in play.

And the Blues then saw out the closing stages with relative ease to climb above their opponents in the League One standings.

Pompey (3-4-1-2): Bazunu; Carter, Raggett (c), Ogilvie; Romeo, Thompson (Tunnicliffe 73), Jacobs (Robertson 85), Hume (Hackett 80); Curtis; Hirst, Walker
Goals: Raggett 33, Jacobs 41
Booked: Raggett, Curtis
Subs not used: Webber, Jewitt-White, Harness, O’Brien

Burton (3-4-3): Garratt; Shaughnessy, Leak, Borthwick-Jackson; Hamer, Mancienne (c) (Saydee 82), Taylor (Chapman 63), Kokolo; Gilligan, Gassan (Moult 86), Powell
Goals: Gassan 50
Booked: Mancienne, Powell, Taylor, Chapman
Subs not used: Kovář, Blake-Tracy, Maddox, Lakin

Referee: Craig Hicks

Attendance: 13,407 (96 away fans)

Sep 212021
 

Portsmouth FC 2021/2022


H League 1
Portsmouth 2
Plymouth Argyle 2


FORM GUIDE

DRAWN LOST LOST LOST LOST DRAWN WON WON LOST WON

Sean Raggett scored deep into stoppage-time to ensure Pompey and Plymouth would draw 2-2 for the third meeting in succession.

It appeared as though the Blues were slipping to a fourth successive League One defeat after Ryan Hardie raced clear to score twice in the second half at Fratton Park.

That came after Lee Brown had doubled his tally for the season by converting a low free-kick for the hosts in the early stages.

Argyle were seemingly heading for the third tier summit, but Pompey kept pushing and were rewarded for their efforts with Raggett’s late contribution.

Danny Cowley made three changes from the side beaten by Cambridge – also on home soil – at the weekend.

Kieron Freeman, Joe Morrell and John Marquis all returned to the starting line-up, as Paul Downing, Miguel Azeez and Ellis Harrison dropped to the bench.

It meant a switch to a 3-4-1-2 system, with Freeman and Shaun Williams either side of Raggett at the back.

Ronan Curtis moved into a more advanced position alongside Marquis, while Marcus Harness floated in behind.

And the change had an instant impact, as the home side broke the deadlock with less than six minutes on the clock.

Conor Grant was booked for bringing down Mahlon Romeo just outside the box, although Pompey players felt the punishment should have been harsher.

Curtis shaped to shoot, but instead it was BROWN who took the free-kick, slotting it under the leaping wall and into the net.

There was a moving tribute to young Blues fan Sophie Fairall, who lost her brave battle with cancer earlier in the week.

Both sets of fans broke out into applause in the 10th minute, with all the players all stopping to join in.

There was then almost another goal when a low Romeo delivery was only cleared as far as Ryan Tunnicliffe.

He tried to sneak the ball inside the near post, but Mike Cooper got down to his left to push it behind.

The contest turned niggly as the first half developed, with referee Carl Brook dishing out a total of six bookings – three for either side – before the break.

Plymouth threatened themselves as the action progressed and Gavin Bazunu dealt with Luke Jephcott’s long-range effort.

Hardie then met Grant’s pass into the box with a neat flick that flashed a matter of inches past the post.

At the other end, Brown tried to repeat his earlier trick in stoppage-time, but this time slammed a free-kick straight into the wall.


Half Time

Portsmouth 1

Plymouth Aryle 0


The hosts were looking for a strong start to the second half, only to concede within three minutes of the restart.

It came from their own corner, with the ball hacked up the pitch and Freeman only able to head it into the path of Hardie.

The striker raced up the pitch with only the keeper to beat and neatly lifted home his shot to draw Argyle level.

There was a positive reaction from the Fratton faithful, who continued to get behind their side after that setback.

But the goal certainly seemed to knock the players off their stride, with a few sloppy passes seeing moves break down.

Plymouth were next to seriously threaten, with Bazunu off his line to deny Jephcott and the Blues then surviving a scramble in their box.

There was soon a chance at the other end, though, as Romeo’s effort was blocked by Ryan Broom, while Curtis could not get enough power on his header when the ball ran loose.

Romeo was looking particularly lively for the Blues and met Harness’ cross with a fierce volley that rattled the post, although he had strayed narrowly offside.

And they went close again moments later following some neat passing play involving Morrell and Harness.

The latter’s low centre was turned across the face of goal by Curtis, but a stretching Marquis could not guide the ball on target.

Both sides were looking capable of scoring a winner, with the action quickly switching from one end of the pitch to the other.

It was Plymouth who went ahead on 80 minutes, though, after Williams misjudged a Panutche Camara pass and Hardie broke clear to score his second of the night.

A gamble was needed and Freeman and Brown were sacrificed for forwards Reeco Hackett-Fairchild and Harrison.

But Argyle were using up whatever time they could to see out the closing stages – and it appeared they had done their job.

Then, in the final seconds of stoppage-time, Curtis swung in a fine cross that was nodded down by Harrison and RAGGETT turned the ball home from close range.

There was a mixture of relief and delight as Fratton Park erupted, with the final whistle sounding moments later.

Pompey (3-4-1-2): Bazunu; Freeman (Harrison 87), Raggett, Williams; Romeo, Tunnicliffe, Morrell, Brown (c) (Hackett-Fairchild 84); Harness; Curtis, Marquis
Goals: Brown 6, Raggett 90+5
Booked: Raggett, Curtis, Harness
Subs not used: Bass, Downing, Thompson, Azeez, Hirst

Plymouth (3-5-2): Cooper; Wilson, Scarr, Galloway; Edwards (c), Camara, Houghton, Broom (Law 85), Grant; Jephcott (Agard 90+2), Hardie (Garrick 87)
Goals: Hardie 48, 80
Booked: Grant, Edwards, Houghton
Subs not used: Burton, Gillesphey, Randell, Shirley

Referee: Carl Brook

Attendance: 13,375 (824 away fans)

Feb 272021
 

Portsmouth FC 2020/2021


H League 1
Portsmouth 1
Gillingham 1


FORM GUIDE

DRAWN WON LOST LOST WON DRAWN WON LOST LOST WON

Pompey dropped more League One points at Fratton Park after being held to a draw by mid-table Gillingham.

They forged ahead through Sean Raggett’s header, only for some sloppy defending to gift Vadaine Oliver a leveller before the interval.

Both sides had chances to secure victory, but failure to take them was – taking into account the sides’ respective positions in the table – more costly for the hosts.

Kenny Jackett made one enforced change from the side that won at in-form Oxford earlier in the week.

Callum Johnson missed out with a calf injury, so Haji Mnoga came in for just his second league start for the club.

It meant that Ronan Curtis continued to be used as a striker, partnering Ellis Harrison in a 4-4-2 system.

There was a familiar face in the opposition line-up, with former Fratton loanee Stuart O’Keefe starting for the Gills, while John Akinde was named among the substitutes.

It did not take long for the game to explode into life, with the hosts going close to breaking the deadlock after breaking quickly up the pitch from a corner.

Andy Cannon and Harvey White combined to find Curtis and he slipped a pass across to Marcus Harness, whose effort came back off the post.

Harness then tried to convert a dangerous Curtis delivery from wide on the left, but could only hook the ball over.

It was not all one-way traffic, though, and Craig MacGillivray did well to adjust his body and save when Connor Ogilvie’s header deflected off Curtis.

There were appeals for a penalty at the other end after Raggett and Rasmus Nicolaisen both tried to attack a corner.

Neither could make a clean connection, though, with the ball bouncing up and striking the arm of Tom O’Connor, but referee Tim Robinson decided any contact was accidental.

Pompey were looking the more likely side to open the scoring and Jack Bonham got down to save after Harrison met White’s cross.

The duo reversed roles a few minutes later and this time a well-struck effort from White was again kept out by the Gills keeper.

And the Blues did finally make the breakthrough on 32 minutes, as Harness skinned Ogilvie and sent the ball into the box.

RAGGETT timed his run to perfection, racing into the centre to stoop and send a header past the helpless Bonham.

But Gillingham hit back to draw level before the break – and it was a poor goal for the hosts to concede.

Lee Brown tried to chest the ball back to MacGillivray, but his touch was not strong enough, allowing Oliver to nip in and score.

There was still time for both sides to carve open another great opportunity before the whistle below.

Curtis showed a neat touch to bring the ball down inside the box and drill in a low shot that was again kept out by the impressive Bonham.

And MacGillivray then kept out a thunderous Olly Lee effort moments later, with Raggett on hand to do the mopping up.


Half Time

Portsmouth 1

Gillingham 1


Pompey came tearing out of the blocks and Jack Tucker made a key interception when Harrison tried to play a cute pass through to Curtis.

Head physio Bobby Bacic was then kept busy, having to enter the pitch to treat Harrison and Nicolaisen in quick succession following collisions.

Pompey had the ball in the back of the net just before the hour mark, when Brown beat Jordan Graham and squared for Harrison to slot home.

But the hosts were furious that Robinson decided the left-back had fouled his man and awarded a free-kick.

That was the last touch of the ball for Harrison, with Jackett deciding to replace him up front with John Marquis.

The Blues were trying to force their way through and an effort from White was pushed behind by Bonham.

Then, from the resulting corner, the keeper beat away Tom Naylor’s angled header, with the loose ball not landing for Raggett at the back stick.

But the hosts had fallen a bit flat as the action progressed and were looking for an attacking spark to get them back on track.

Instead it was their opponents who might have scored on 78 minutes, with Oliver unable to keep his header down from a Graham cross.

A second switch soon followed for Pompey, with Ryan Williams adding some fresh legs in place of Curtis.

And after Mnoga was booked for a clumsy challenge on Ogilvie, Jackett also decided to swap the teenager for Jack Whatmough.

There were half-chances for Tom O’Connor and Kyle Dempsey, as Gillingham tried to snatch a late winner.

The best fell to Akinde deep into stoppage-time, with the striker racing through as Pompey committed men forward, only for MacGillivray to come off his line and make a key save.

Pompey (4-4-2): MacGillivray; Mnoga (Whatmough 85), Raggett, Nicolaisen, Brown; Harness, Naylor (c), Cannon, White; Curtis (Williams 79), Harrison (Marquis 59)
Goals: Raggett 32
Booked: Mnoga
Subs not used: Ward, Daniels, Byers, Hiwula

Gillingham (4-4-2): Bonham; Jackson, Cundy, Tucker, Ogilvie; Graham, Dempsey (c), O’Keefe, O’Connor; Lee (Akinde 73), Oliver
Goals: Oliver 40
Booked: O’Keefe
Subs not used: Bastien, McKenzie, Morton, Johnson, Woods, Willock

Referee: Tim Robinson

Jan 192021
 

Portsmouth FC 2020/2021


H League 1
Portsmouth 4
AFC Wimbledon 0


FORM GUIDE

WON WON LOST LOST WON DRAWN WON WON WON LOST

Pompey moved to within a point of the League One summit following a comfortable victory over struggling AFC Wimbledon.

It was the first Fratton fixture in more than a month and the hosts brushed off the wet conditions to seal another valuable three points in the battle for promotion.

The damage was done in the opening 45 minutes, with leading marksman John Marquis breaking the deadlock with a close-range finish.

Ryan Williams then doubled the lead in impressive fashion, while Sean Raggett headed home a third goal before the interval.

And Ben Close came off the bench to complete an enjoyable evening for the Blues with a neat effort late on.

Kenny Jackett unsurprisingly stuck with the same side that had secured victory at Fleetwood a few days earlier.

It meant that new loan signing Harvey White had to be content with a place on the bench, where he was joined by Ronan Curtis, who had completed his self-isolation period.

There was a minute’s applause before kick-off in memory of former Pompey midfielder Bobby Kellard, who passed away earlier in the month at the age of 77.

The game took a while to get going, with neither side helped by the heavy rain that was swirling around the ground.

It was the hosts who had the first decent chance on 15 minutes, with Sam Walker getting down to parry clear a bending Andy Cannon effort.

Craig MacGillivray was not being troubled at the other end, although a corner caused a few concerns before it was prodded wide in a packed area.

Pompey were showcasing some neat build-up play – despite the tough conditions – without finding an end product.

But that arrived on 28 minutes when Michael Jacobs slipped a pass across to Callum Johnson, who sent the ball in from the right.

It was met by a glancing Williams header that was heading for the far corner, with MARQUIS nipping in at the back post to force the ball home.

Jack Whatmough might have doubled the lead with a bullet header from a Marcus Harness cross, but the ball was directed straight at Walker.

The Blues did have a second goal soon after, though, as Marquis laid the ball off for WILLIAMS, who took a couple of touches before curling a fine left-footed strike into the net from the edge of the area.

And there was time for a third just before the interval, when Jacobs sent a dangerous free-kick into the mixer.

It was attacked by both Whatmough and RAGGETT, but the latter got there first to firmly head the ball home.


Half Time

Portsmouth 3

AFC Wimbledon 0


The visitors started the second half brightly and Ryan Longman’s shot was blocked by Raggett, while a dangerous corner also had to be negotiated.

And they almost reduced their deficit when Jack Rudoni rose to meet a fine Luke O’Neill cross, only to guide his header past the post.

It was soon Pompey’s turn to threaten following some good play from Marquis, who slipped a pass across to Harness, although Williams was not able to flick home the winger’s delivery.

A teasing Lee Brown corner was then not properly deal with and Marquis tried to scoop the ball into the net, but could not find the target.

Jackett made a switch just past the hour mark, with the lively Jacobs withdrawn and replaced on the left by Curtis.

Pompey were cruising, but a deflected cross from Nesta Guinness-Walker – the great-grandson of Obi-Wan Kenobi actor Alec Guinness – had to be scrambled around the post by MacGillivray.

A further double change followed, with White coming on for his debut alongside Ellis Harrison, as Cannon and Marquis made way.

The newcomer soon made a good sliding challenge that would have drawn warm applause from the Fratton faithful, had any of them been inside the ground.

Pompey then saw off a spell of Dons pressure and Harrison had two chances to extend the advantage in quick succession.

A drilled effort was parried away by Walker, while he then headed a Curtis cross down and the ball bounced over.

But it was left for substitute CLOSE to wrap things up, racing onto Curtis’ pass and neatly slotting the ball into the bottom corner.

Pompey (4-4-1-1): MacGillivray; Johnson, Whatmough, Raggett, Brown; Harness, Naylor (c), Cannon (White 70), Jacobs (Curtis 64); Williams (Close 83); Marquis (Harrison 70)
Goals: Marquis 28, Williams 36, Raggett 44, Close 89
Subs not used: Turnbull, Nicolaisen, Hiwula

AFC Wimbledon (3-5-2): Walker; O’Neill (Kalambayi 64), Nightingale (c), Czoka; Alexander, Rudoni, Woodyard, Reilly, Guinness-Walker; Pigott, Longman (Robinson 78)
Subs not used: Tzanev, McLoughlin, Oksanen, Hartigan, Chislett

Referee: Trevor Kettle

Nov 282020
 

Portsmouth FC 2020/2021


H FA Cup
Portsmouth 6
King's Lynn Town 1


FORM GUIDE

WON DRAWN WON DRAWN LOST WON WON LOST WON WON

Pompey eased into the third round of the Emirates FA Cup with a clinical display against non-league King’s Lynn at Fratton Park.

The television cameras had arrived on the south coast hoping to capture an upset, only for Rasmus Nicolaisen to open the scoring in just the second minute.

A stunning strike from Tom Naylor increased the lead and there were chances for it to be extended in the first half.

But the Blues got the job done after the interval, with Sean Raggett and Marcus Harness getting in on the act.

Dayle Southwell came off the bench to reduce the National League side’s deficit, but that was a rare bright spot for them.

Ellis Harrison soon increased their misery by scoring from the spot and Jordy Hiwula added an impressive sixth goal late on.

Kenny Jackett made five changes from the side that drew with Oxford in the league earlier in the week.

Three of them came at the back, where Alex Bass was preferred between the sticks, and Cam Pring and Nicolaisen also returned.

Ben Close and Ryan Williams were handed starts, with Craig MacGillivray, Lee Brown, Jack Whatmough, Andy Cannon and John Marquis all dropping to the bench.

There was a minute’s silence ahead of kick-off in memory of all those who have passed away during these tough times.

That includes footballing greats Diego Maradona and Ray Clemence, as well as former Pompey players Ray Hiron, Fred Smith, John Collins, Alan Garner, Malcolm Manley and Cyril Rutter

When the action started, fears of a giant-killing were quickly soothed, as Pompey took the lead after just 108 seconds.

Williams won a corner on the right and Pring swung the ball into the box for NICOLAISEN to head home his first goal for the club.

The visitors did not look over-awed in the opening stages, however, and Sonny Carey glanced a flag-kick narrowly wide.

Bass was then called into action and got down to his right to push away a cleanly-struck effort from Adam Marriott.

But the Blues soon began to take control and started to play some neat passing football to trouble the opposition defence.

And the pressure paid off on 30 minutes, as the skipper continued his run of fine goalscoring form to double the advantage.

It was a superb strike, with Ronan Curtis’ delivery laid off by Williams for NAYLOR to hit a 25-yard rocket that flew in off the underside of the crossbar.

The floodgates might have opened after that, as the hosts unleashed a deluge of pressure, with the Linnets hanging on as the interval approached.

Harrison – who was being held by Rory McAuley – saw his header saved by Archie Mair after a Close effort had been blocked.

There was then an almighty scramble in the King’s Lynn box, with Raggett and Williams unable to force the ball home, while a defender flung himself in the path of Nicolaisen’s effort.

And Curtis was inches away from getting his name on the scoresheet when he intercepted a loose ball and hit a fine 30-yard strike that rattled the bar.


Half Time

Portsmouth 2

King’s Lynn Town 0


The second half began at the same frantic pace as the first, with a perfectly-timed Kyle Callan-McFadden challenge stopping Close from racing clear.

But the hosts did increase their lead on 51 minutes, when RAGGETT charged towards the far post to firmly convert a Curtis corner.

King’s Lynn were still posing a threat going forward, but whenever their moves broke down, Pompey would break with menace.

And they soon had a fourth, as Harrison stole possession in the middle of the pitch and burst forward.

The striker then laid the ball off for HARNESS, who calmly slipped it into the bottom corner to kill any lingering hopes of a Linnets comeback.

Hiwula and Bryn Morris were both brought on, as Jackett gave Curtis and Naylor the chance to rest any tired limbs ahead of a midweek trip to Blackpool.

But the visitors reduced their deficit when McAuley held the ball up for Southwell to slot neatly into the net.

It was a brief reprieve for King’s Lynn, however, and Pompey had the chance to grab a fifth goal when Pring was fouled in the area by Ross Barrows.

Referee Will Finnie made the simple decision to point to the spot and HARRISON sent Mair the wrong way.

That was not the end of the action, though, and HIWULA opened his Blues account in impressive fashion, cutting inside from the left and curling home a fine strike.

Harness came close to wrapping things up in style following good work by Williams, but Mair was equal to his strike.

And Bass also kept his concentration at the other end, doing well to stop Southwell’s effort flying inside his near post.

But the contest almost finished the same way it had started – with a Nicolaisen goal. The defender nodded a Harness free-kick against the post seconds before the final whistle blew.

Pompey (4-4-2): Bass; Johnson, Raggett, Nicolaisen, Pring; Williams, Close, Naylor (c) (Morris 66), Curtis (Hiwula 59); Harrison (Marquis 81), Harness
Goals: Nicolaisen 2, Naylor 30, Raggett 51, Harness 58, Harrison 72 (pen), Hiwula 80
Booked: Naylor
Subs not used: MacGillivray, Whatmough, Brown, Cannon

King’s Lynn (3-4-3): Mair; Callan-McFadden, Smith, McAuley; Barrows, Clunan (c), Carey, Brown; Power (Gash 81), Marriott (Southwell 63), Loza (King 63)
Goals: Southwell 68
Booked: McAuley
Subs not used: Fleming, Richards, Jarvis

Referee: Will Finnie

Nov 242020
 

Portsmouth FC 2020/2021


H League 1
Portsmouth 1
Oxford United 1


FORM GUIDE

DRAWN WON DRAWN LOST WON WON LOST WON WON WON

Sean Raggett’s goal was not enough to earn victory for Pompey, as they were held to a draw by Oxford at Fratton Park.

It was probably not a surprising outcome given that all four meetings between the sides last term finished all square.

The hosts looked comfortable after Raggett’s firm header had broken the deadlock, but their opponents were invigorated by some switches in the second half.

And Alex Gorrin levelled for United from the penalty spot, while both teams then had chances to win the contest.

Kenny Jackett made two changes from the side that eased to a comfortable victory over Crewe at the weekend.

They both came in the full-back berths, where Cam Pring and Haji Mnoga made way for Lee Brown and Callum Johnson.

Former Oxford winger Ryan Williams was fit enough to appear on the bench following a hip injury, while ex-Blues stopper Simon Eastwood started for the visitors.

It was a fairly nondescript opening to the contest, with nothing to trouble either keeper in the opening stages.

The hosts were happy to let their opponents see plenty of the ball and then look to hit them on the break.

And Pompey took the lead with their first chance of the game on 19 minutes when RAGGETT decided to stay up after a Jack Whatmough free-kick had been partially dealt with.

Ronan Curtis swung the ball back in the area, where the defender got in front of three players to firmly head home.

They probably should have doubled the lead soon after, but John Marquis uncharacteristically fired high and wide from Ellis Harrison’s centre.

It was the Blues looking more likely to add to the scoring and when Whatmough met a Marcus Harness cross, his header cannoned back off the bar, with Harrison unable to force in the loose ball.

The striker then thought he had been brought down by Elliott Moore as he tried to race through on goal.

Both players glanced across to the officials, with the defender likely to have been shown a red card if referee Tim Robinson had not waved play on.


Half Time

Portsmouth 1

Oxford United 0


The visitors had to deal with a couple of dangerous left-sided deliveries from Curtis and Brown following the restart.

Pompey were working hard all over the pitch, with Curtis epitomising that by tracking back and halting a dangerous foray forward from Sean Clare.

They were not doing much to trouble Eastwood between the sticks, but the hosts were looking comfortable.

Karl Robinson responded by making a triple substitution and one of the newcomers, Marcus McGuane, immediately drew a fine save from Craig MacGillivray.

The Blues soon hit back at the other end, as Harrison met Brown’s cross with a neat flick that Eastwood tipped over the bar.

But United had a chance to level on 69 minutes when Robinson deemed Whatmough’s challenge on Dan Agyei to be foul, despite the defender protesting that he won the ball.

And Gorrin made no mistake from the spot, coolly sending MacGillivray the wrong way to draw the visitors level.

Pompey looked to restore their lead and a fine delivery from Tom Naylor was met by Curtis, who screwed his shot wide.

Andy Cannon and Harness made way for Bryn Morris and Williams, as Jackett injected some fresh energy into his midfield for the closing stages.

But it was the Oxford substitutes causing more problems and MacGillivray had to palm away a low Mark Sykes effort, with the ball thankfully not falling for the lurking Matty Taylor.

The Blues also had opportunities to turn one point into three, however, and Williams had two efforts blocked before Raggett glanced a header wide.

Curtis also headed Johnson’s delivery straight at Eastwood, as neither side managed to find a winner during a frantic finish.

But there was a melee after the final whistle, with Taylor escaping punishment for grabbing Curtis in an uncomfortable area.

Instead it was the Pompey winger that received a yellow card, along with Oxford defender John Mousinho.

Pompey (4-4-2): MacGillivray; Johnson, Whatmough, Raggett, Brown; Harness (Williams 82), Cannon (Morris 80), Naylor (c), Curtis; Marquis, Harrison
Goals: Raggett 19
Booked: Cannon, Raggett, Curtis
Subs not used: Bass, Nicolaisen, Pring, Close, Hiwula

Oxford (4-1-4-1): Eastwood; Long, Moore, Atkinson, Ruffels; Gorrin; Clare (Mousinho 86), Henry (c) (Sykes 62), Forde (McGuane 62), Shodipo (Obita 62); Agyei (Taylor 82)
Goals: Gorrin 69 (pen)
Booked: Clare, Taylor, Mousinho
Subs not used: Stevens, Kelly

Referee: Tim Robinson

Nov 072020
 

Portsmouth FC 2020/2021


A FA Cup
Ipswich Town 2
Portsmouth 3


FORM GUIDE

WON WON LOST WON WON WON LOST WON WON WON

Sean Raggett scored late in extra-time at Ipswich to send Pompey into the second round of the Emirates FA Cup.

The defender lashed the ball into the net just when it looked like penalties would be required to separate the two League One sides.

It did not look the contest was going to be a close when the Blues roared into a commanding lead through early Ronan Curtis and Tom Naylor goals.

But the Tractor Boys reduced their deficit through Jon Nolan and James Norwood came off the bench to draw them level after the break.

Kenny Jackett stuck with the same side that were so impressive in victory at Lincoln in the league on Tuesday evening.

That meant Cam Pring continued to deputise for Lee Brown – who injured his hamstring in the Sincil Bank warm-up – at left-back.

Oli Hawkins led the line for the hosts against his former club, while ex-Blues loanee David Cornell was between the sticks.

With Armistice Day approaching, there was a period of remembrance observed ahead of kick-off, while a bugler paid the Last Post.

And when the action started, Pompey got off to a blistering start and found themselves with a commanding lead inside the opening 13 minutes.

The first goal came after Ryan Williams was fouled 25 yards from goal by defender Mark McGuinness.

CURTIS stepped up to take the free-kick and managed to squeeze his effort between Cornell’s glove and the post.

The advantage was then doubled moments later, as Andy Cannon cut the ball back for NAYLOR to find the net – via a McGuinness deflection – from the edge of the area.

But that was Cannon’s last meaningful piece of action, as he soon limped off the pitch to be replaced by Ben Close.

The newcomer was immediately in the thick of the action, playing a fine pass through to Curtis, whose first time strike had to be turned behind by Cornell.

But the keeper – who did not make an appearance during his short stint with the Blues in 2015 – then almost saw a clearance charged down by the ever lively Ryan Williams.

Instead the ball flew to Marcus Harness and he won a corner that was taken by Cam Pring and headed clear by Hawkins.

Pompey were looking capable of adding to their lead, but instead found their advantage reduced just before the break.

Raggett intervened to stop Nolan’s header reaching Freddie Sears, but the ball flew straight back to the midfielder, who spun sharply and fired home.


Half Time

Ipswich Town 1

Portsmouth 2


The hosts then had a couple of opportunities to get back on level terms immediately after the restart.

Nolan’s effort was deflected narrowly past the post and Brett McGavin’s corner then almost snuck in at the near post, with Craig MacGillivray making the save with his legs.

Jackett soon made his second switch of the afternoon, as Callum Johnson made way and Haji Mnoga was given another chance to impress.

The game had quietened down a bit since Ipswich’s fast start, although a dangerous McGavin delivery into the box somehow evaded everyone on its path out of play.

Curtis showed some neat footwork at the other end of the pitch on 60 minutes, but his effort was comfortably dealt with by Cornell.

Hawkins was soon replaced by Norwood and the striker made an instant impact, racing between the Blues back-line and neatly slotting in an equaliser for the Tractor Boys.

Fellow substitute Gwion Edwards then came close to giving the hosts a lead, courtesy of a fierce strike that was beaten away by MacGillivray.

Ellis Harrison was also brought on to see if he could find a winner against his former club in the closing stages, with Curtis the man to head off.

It was Ipswich looking more likely to score again, though, and Emyr Huws nodded wastefully wide after meeting a McGavin corner.

And they almost did settle the tie in stoppage-time following a spot of pinball in the Pompey box, but Close was in the right place to stop the ball finding the net.

He then had a chance to score for the visitors a few moments later, but fired over from a Williams cut-back.


Full Time

Ipswich Town 2

Portsmouth 2


Teams are allowed to make an additional substitution if ties go into extra-time and Jackett immediately used his, swapping John Marquis with Bryn Morris.

And the visitors suddenly looked bright again, creating a few half-chances before Harness sent a shot crashing against the post.

Cam Pring then lifted a cross into the area from wide on the left, with Harrison rising to meet it and drawing a save from Cornell.

But the Blues did retake the lead in the second period of extra-time after Janoi Donacien had been booked for a foul on Harrison.

Harness’ delivery was met by Naylor, but his header was saved by Cornell. The loose ball was turned towards goal by Rasmus Nicolaisen, though, and RAGGETT made sure that it crossed the line.

And Mnoga almost added icing on the cake at the death, but could not keep his shot down after racing through on goal.

Ipswich (4-3-3): Cornell; Donacien, Nsiala (c), McGuiness, Kenlock; Huws (Judge 102), Nolan, McGavin; Bennetts (Edwards 67), Hawkins (Norwood 62), Sears (Lankester 94)
Goals: Nolan 43, Norwood 66
Booked: Hawkins, Donacien, Norwood
Subs not used: Holy, Wilson, Jackson

Pompey (4-2-3-1): MacGillivray; Johnson (Mnoga 50), Raggett, Nicolaisen, Pring; Naylor (c), Cannon (Close 23); Harness, Williams, Curtis (Harrison 74); Marquis (Morris 91)
Goals: Curtis 11, Naylor 13, Raggett 111
Booked: Pring
Subs not used: Bass, Downing, Hiwula

Referee: Andy Haines

Mar 102020
 

Portsmouth FC Season 19/20


H League 1
Portsmouth 2
Fleetwood Town 2


FORM GUIDE

DRAWN LOST LOST WON WON LOST WON WON LOST WON

Pompey had to settle for a point at Fratton Park against an in-form Fleetwood side also pushing for a place in the top two.

They conceded a sloppy opener to Barrie McKay, but Sean Raggett nodded the hosts back on level terms before the break.

Harry Souttar then turned the ball into his own net, with the Cod Army defender soon making amends by securing them a point.

Kenny Jackett made three changes from the side that were beaten on the road at Peterborough at the weekend.

Ellis Harrison missed that game after becoming a father for the first time, but was back to lead the line.

There were also returns for Ross McCrorie and Andy Cannon, as John Marquis dropped to the bench, while Jack Whatmough and the injured Ben Close missed out completely.

Pompey were first to threaten when the ball broke for Ronan Curtis in the box and, from a tight angle, he sent a shot dipping over the crossbar.

But it was relatively slow start to the contest, with a scything Glenn Whelan challenge on Ryan Williams the main point of focus, earning the midfielder a yellow card.

Fleetwood then capitalised on some sloppy play from the hosts to break the deadlock on 19 minutes.

Ched Evans cut the ball back for McKay and his first attempt was saved by Alex Bass, only for the keeper to get into a tangle with Steve Seddon.

It was McKay who was quickest to the loose ball and was able to force it home from a couple of yards out.

The same player then curled a teasing corner into the box and Tom Naylor was forced to head narrowly past his own post.

Fleetwood were looking more likely to add to the scoring and Jack Sowerby’s effort took a deflection, with Bass adjusting well to save.

Pompey finally began to move through the gears, with Harrison forcing Alex Cairns to drop a cross and have to grasp the ball at the second attempt.

And an equaliser did arrive on 36 minutes, when McCrorie’s fine delivery from deep on the right was met by RAGGETT, whose header looped over Cairns and into the net.

Lewis Gibson was booked late in the first half for a terrible dive in the box that, which – for some reason – peeved the Cod Army bench.

They were almost celebrating in stoppage-time, though, as Josh Morris curled a fine free-kick against the post.


Half Time

Portsmouth 1

Fleetwood Town 1


The hosts were caught napping immediately following the restart and Morris’ centre was pushed out by Bass, with Cameron McGeehan on hand to clear the danger.

But the Blues took the lead moments later, thanks to a searing burst of pace from Williams down the right.

He surged past Lewis Gibson to get on the end of Cannon’s pass and sent in a low delivery that was thundered into his own net by SOUTTAR.

Both sides were looking capable of adding to the scoring, although Harrison scuffed wide after being played through by Curtis.

The Cod Army then broke quickly up the pitch and Morris was left with just Bass to beat, with the keeper coming off his line to make a crucial save.

But the visitors were level on 55 minutes, as Souttar atoned for his earlier indiscretion by nodding home when a corner was headed back across goal by Evans.

Jackett made a double switch to try to regain the advantage, as Williams and McGeehan made way for Marcus Harness and Marquis.

The action continued to swing from one end to the next and Curtis could only nod wide at the back post after meeting a fine cross from Harness.

But there was generally a lack of quality from both sides in the final third, with a point enough to move the Blues up two places fourth.

Pompey (4-2-3-1): Bass; McCrorie, Bolton, Raggett, Seddon; McGeehan (Marquis 65), Naylor (c); Williams (Harness 65), Cannon, Curtis; Harrison
Goals: Raggett 36, Souttar 48 (og)
Booked: Curtis, Harrison
Subs not used: MacGillivray, Downing, Brown, Evans, Hawkins

Fleetwood (3-4-3): Cairns; Connolly, Souttar, Gibson; Coyle, Sowerby (Coutts 69), Whelan, Andrew (Burns 54); Morris (Madden 75), Evans (c), McKay
Goals: McKay 19, Souttar 55
Booked: Whelan, Gibson, Connolly, McKay
Subs not used: Crellin, Thorvaldsson, Biggins, Saunders

Referee: Darren Drysdale

Attendance: 16,775 (64 away fans)

Feb 082020
 

Portsmouth FC 2019/2020


A League 1
Tranmere Rovers 0
Portsmouth 2


FORM GUIDE

WON WON WON WON WON WON WON WON WON DRAWN

Sean Raggett and Ryan Williams were on target as Pompey won at Tranmere to set a new club record.

It is the first time they have won nine successive games in all competitions since entering the Football League in 1920.

Raggett opened his Blues account with an early close-range header and Williams made sure of the points with a low strike after the break.

The relegation-threatened Rovers kept battling away, but were all too often let down by their play in the final third.

Kenny Jackett made two changes from the side that beat Sunderland on home soil the previous week.

One was enforced, with Andy Cannon’s glute injury seeing Ben Close recalled to midfield and Cameron McGeehan pushed further forward.

Ellis Harrison also returned to lead the line and John Marquis dropped to the bench, where he was joined by Gareth Evans.

The hosts had received plenty of negative publicity for their pitch, which was lacking much grass and included big patches of sand in the wide areas.

Both sides found the conditions – not helped by the windy weather – difficult to deal with and there were plenty of misjudged passes.

But a lovely touch from Ronan Curtis provided an early opening and when his shot was beaten away by Scott Davies, the loose ball was cleared by Calum Woods before Williams could capitalise.

The deadlock was broken on 13 minutes, however, with Curtis providing the assist after he had been fouled by Kane Wilson.

A free-kick was swung into the box by the winger and although Christian Burgess could not make a connection, RAGGETT was in position to head home his opening Blues goal from a few yards out.

Tranmere fought back and almost gained an immediate leveller after Burgess had made a key block to deny former Fratton loanee James Vaughan.

The ball was sent straight back into the area and Andy Cook’s neat back-heel was well saved by Alex Bass from point-blank range.

Still the danger was not over, though, and Close had to go sliding in to prevent Kieron Morris having a free shot on goal.

Harrison had an attempt at the other end midway through the first half, but angled the ball wide after being teed-up by Curtis.

George Ray then did well to get ahead of Burgess at the far post and prevent the defender meeting Steve Seddon’s free-kick.

But it was Tranmere who finished the opening period on top and Bass got down well to stop Cook from nodding home Wilson’s cross.

A delivery from Corey Blackett-Taylor then appeared to present Cook with a free header, only for the striker to somehow miss the ball completely.

Another attempt from the same player soon crept pass the post after Woods had this time provided the cross.

And Burgess came to the rescue in stoppage-time to block Cook’s centre after Bass had come charging from his box and misjudged the bounce of the ball.


Half Time

Tranmere Rovers 1

Portsmouth 0


A couple of Seddon free-kicks caused the hosts problems once the action restarted, while Curtis scuffed a chance off target.

But the lead was doubled on 51 minutes after McGeehan slipped a neat pass through to Curtis, who had stayed onside.

The Republic of Ireland international’s cut-back went behind WILLIAMS, who recovered well to drill a low shot into the bottom corner from just outside the box.

Pompey kept looking for more goals, though, and a firm header from Harrison was sent straight into Davies’ arms.

Their opponents started to look more of a threat as the half progressed, although were constantly being let down by a poor final ball.

A corner – which Bass was booked for holding up – then led to an almighty scramble and Morris eventually prodded wastefully wide.

Rovers were seeing a lot of the ball, without doing much with it, while the visitors were trying to break quickly.

One delivery from Seddon was neatly flicked on by Harrison, but Davies was able to scramble behind before Close could pounce.

And Pompey saw out the closing stages with relative ease to continue their charge up the League One table.

Tranmere (4-4-2): Davies (c); Wilson (Ridehalgh 46), Ray, Monthe, Woods (Danns 59); Morris, Woodyard, McCullough, Blackett-Taylor; Vaughan (Ferrier 59), Cook
Booked: Vaughan
Subs not used: Pilling, Perkins, Gilmour, Jennings

Pompey (4-2-3-1): Bass; Bolton, Burgess, Raggett, Seddon; Naylor (c), Close; Williams, McGeehan, Curtis; Harrison
Goals: Raggett 13, Williams 51
Booked: Bass, Williams
Subs not used: MacGillivray, McCrorie, Whatmough, Brown, Evans, Harness, Marquis

Referee: Michael Salisbury

Attendance: 6,985 (1,379 Pompey fans)