Feb 042017
 
League 2
Wycombe Wanderers 1 – 0 Portsmouth

 

Deflected goal seals Blues defeat

Pompey received a second successive slice of misfortune as they lost out to a fluke goal at Wycombe.

After being frustrated by a ricochet against Exeter last week, it was a wicked deflection that saw Scott Kashket claim all three points for the Chairboys.

Both sides created chances in a lively encounter at Adams Park, but it was the hosts who were able to boost their promotion credentials.

Paul Cook made five changes from the side beaten at home by the Grecians the previous week.

Eoin Doyle came straight into the starting 11 following his deadline day loan arrival from Preston.

Behind him was a new attacking trio of Kyle Bennett, Gary Roberts and – making his full debut – Jamal Lowe.

There was also a space for Amine Linganzi in midfield, while Conor Chaplin, Carl Baker, Kal Naismith and Danny Rose all dropped to the bench.

Pompey came roaring out of the blocks and Roberts slipped the ball through to Lowe, who could only drag the ball wide in the opening seconds.

But it was the hosts who then started to dominate, with the giant frame of Adebayo Akinfenwa unsurprisingly causing a few problems.

For all their balls into the box, however, there was little to trouble David Forde between the Blues’ sticks.

Christian Burgess did particularly well to beat Kaskhket to Akifenwa’s flick and powerfully head clear.

The centre-back then tried his luck at the other end of the pitch and met two Roberts corners, but sent one straight at Jamal Blackman and the other wide of the post.

Pompey started to look the more threatening side as the first half progressed and Eoin Doyle was unable to beat the Chairboys keeper after taking a fine touch to beat Anthony Stewart.

They had an even better chance to break the deadlock on 33 minutes when Bennett sent Enda Stevens through on goal, but Blackman came racing from his line to deny the left-back.

But the Blues survived a nervy moment just before the break when Matt Clarke and Stevens combined to bring down Kashket on the edge of the box.

It was the Irishman blamed by referee Graham Salisbury and shown a yellow card, but Sido Jombati’s free-kick was poor and comfortably claimed by Forde.

Half Time: Wycombe 0 Pompey 0

HIGHLIGHTS

Second Half

Pompey enjoyed some joy at the start of the second half, with Eoin Doyle showing neat footwork down the left.

But the large band of travelling supporters saw their side fall behind in unfortunate fashion just moments later.

Forde dived to his left to keep out a routine shot from Kashket, but the ball took a massive deflection to leave the keeper stranded.

And the keeper then had to scramble back quickly to stop Burgess heading into his own net just a few seconds later.

Bennett tried to catch Blackman out at his near post when the Blues won a free-kick on 52 minutes, but the ball flew narrowly past the post.

The winger then whipped in a cross following a spell of patient build-up play, although there was nobody to meet it at the back stick.

Pompey were dominating possession by this point, with Wycombe doing most of their attacking work on the break.

Bennett played a neat one-two with Roberts on 67 minutes, but his low cross did not quite sit up right for Eoin Doyle in the box.

Cook made a double switch soon after in the hunt for an equaliser, with Lowe and Bennett withdrawn for Baker and Naismith.

And it was Baker who came close to immediately grabbing a goal, taking advantage of a mix-up at the back and hooking narrowly over.

Blackman then did well to stop Eoin Doyle netting from a tight angle, while Baker drilled an effort just past the post.

Chaplin was thrown on for the closing stages as Pompey poured forward and a display of eight additional minutes sparked hopes of a point.

Stevens, Baker and Chaplin all went close as the seconds ticked down, but the Blues were unable to salvage anything.

Wycombe (4-3-3): Blackman; Jombati, Stewart, Pierre (De Havilland 60), Jacobson; O’Nien, Gape, Wood; Kashket (Thompson 89), Akinfenwa, Hayes (c) (Saunders 46)
Goals: Kashket 48
Booked: Wood, Stewart, Saunders, Kashket
Subs not used: Richardson, Bean, Weston, Jakubiak

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

Referee: Graham Salisbury

Attendance: 6,028 (1,800 Pompey fans)

Portsmouth FC
Nov 052016
 
FA Cup 1
Portsmouth 1 – 2 Wycombe Wanderers

 

Early cup exit for Blues

Pompey crashed out of the Emirates FA Cup at the first hurdle with a home defeat to fellow League Two outfit Wycombe.

They were poor before the break and deservedly trailed to Paris Cowan-Hall’s close-range finish.

There was a marked improvement after it, though, and Gareth Evans drew the hosts level following the restart.

The tie appeared to be heading for a replay, only for Adebayo Akinfenwa to strike late on and book Wanderers a place in Monday’s second round draw.

Paul Cook made five changes from the side that won at Cambridge in the league the previous week.

Noel Hunt was handed a first start in attack, while Adam Buxton, Ben Close, Danny Rose and Milan Lalkovic all returned.

Conor Chaplin, Carl Baker and Kyle Bennett dropped to the bench and Pompey were missing the suspended duo of Michael Doyle and Amine Linganzi.

The hosts started brightly on a crisp afternoon on the south coast and won a number of corners that caused the Chairboys problems.

But Wycombe soon started to take control and almost forged ahead when Matt Bloomfield drilled in a low shot that cannoned back off the post.

They went close again moments later, with David Forde just about getting a leg to Cowan-Hall’s effort and diverting the ball wide.

And Wanderers were unable to make it third time lucky when Dominic Gape struck a long-range shot past the post.

But it seemed like only a matter of time before the visitors breached the Blues’ goal and the opener did arrive on 27 minutes.

There was a slight touch of fortune about it, however, with Forde punching clear Michael Harriman’s free-kick, only for the ball to ricochet off the back of Christian Burgess.

Former Pompey youth player Cowan-Hall was in the right place to follow up and head home from just a few yards out.

That failed to spark an upturn in the attacking fortunes of the Blues, though, with Wycombe still looking the more threatening.

There were half-chances for Cowan-Hall and Luke O’Nien, but their best chance of doubling the lead came in stoppage-time.

A corner found Akinfenwa at the far post, only for the imposing striker to head wide from close range.

Half Time: Pompey 0 Wycombe 1

HIGHLIGHTS

Second Half

Pompey had failed to trouble Jamal Blackman before the break, but the keeper was picking the ball out of his net just a couple of minutes after the restart.

Enda Stevens whipped in a teasing cross from the left and EVANS found space in the box to deftly tuck home.

They might have scored another moments later, but Blackman tore from his line to beat Gary Roberts to Close’s threaded pass.

Cook made a double switch just past the hour mark, with Lalkovic and Buxton withdrawn for Bennett and Baker.

But it was Wycombe who almost retook the lead 65 minutes, with Akinfenwa seeing one shot blocked and then the second saved by Forde.

Baker went close himself moments later, however, with a fierce 30-yard strike that was brilliantly palmed over by Blackman.

Cook then made a final throw of the dice on 75 minutes, with the in-form Chaplin replacing Hunt up front.

But the Blues were indebted to Forde for keeping them on a level pegging with two key saves soon after.

The first saw him just about get something to a shot from Myles Weston that took a wicked deflection to divert it off course.

Then, for the second, he dived backwards to palm over Akinfenwa’s cleanly-struck dipper from outside the box.

Both sides appeared keen to avoid a replay, showing plenty of attacking intent as the seconds ticked down.

But it was the hardy band of travelling supporters celebrating late on when Akinfenwa converted Garry Thompson’s cross.

There was hope of another leveller when the fourth official displayed an additional six minutes to be played.

The Chairboys held on to their slender lead, however, to ensure that cup magic was in short supply for Pompey.

Pompey (4-2-3-1): Forde; Buxton (Baker 64), Burgess, Clarke, Stevens; Close, Rose; Evans, Roberts (c), Lalkovic (Bennett 64); Hunt (Chaplin 75)
Goals: Evans 47
Booked: Close
Subs not used: O’Brien, T.Davies, Naismith, Smith

Wycombe (4-3-3): Blackman; Harriman, Stewart, Pierre, Jacobson; O’Nien, Gape, Bloomfield; Hayes (c) (Thompson 77), Akinfenwa (Bean 89), Cowan-Hall (Weston 72)
Goals: Cowan-Hall 27, Akinfenwa 84
Booked: O’Nien
Subs not used: Brown, Jombati, De Havilland, Kashket

Referee: Gavin Ward

Attendance: 8,130 (510 away fans)

Portsmouth FC
Sep 102016
 
League 2
Portsmouth 4 – 2 Wycombe Wanderers

 

Blues move up to second

Pompey fought from behind against Wycombe to stretch their winning streak to four league matches.

Paul Hayes’ opener was not in the script, but Christian Burgess’ leveller lifted everyone and Gary Roberts then converted a penalty.

An equaliser from Hayes dampened the mood, but a superb Conor Chaplin strike restored the Blues’ lead before the break and Carl Baker made sure of the points after it.

Paul Cook unsurprisingly stuck with the same side that beat Crawley so convincingly the previous week.

It was the hosts who threatened first at a damp and gloomy Fratton Park, with showers frequently interrupting proceedings.

Gary Roberts slipped a quick free-kick through to Milan Lalkovic, but his cut-back was well claimed by Jamal Blackman with Curtis Main waiting to pounce.

The Wycombe keeper was pretty conspicuous with his bleached blonde hair and decked out in a garish pink and luminous green kit.

But it was his opposite number who was next called into action and David Forde denied Aaron Pierre after a Sam Wood cross had caused chaos in the Blues box.

And the visitors were ahead on 10 minutes, with Hayes left in too much space to convert Garry Thompson’s volleyed delivery.

That appeared to spark Pompey into life, although they were growing frustrated at the Chairboys’ attempts to slow things down.

There were cries from the crowd and bench that the visitors were spending too long over set-pieces and referee Tim Robinson was forced to calm an irate Cook down.

And the Blues soon started doing their talking on the pitch, with Main’s header deflected over by Pierre after Baker had picked the striker out.

Unfortunately, Main injured himself during the challenge and was forced to disappear down the tunnel to be patched up.

But he failed to reappear, and Chaplin was brought on to replace him – but not before Wood had almost doubled Wanderers’ lead with an effort that bounced off the crossbar and into the arms of a grateful Forde.

The Blues were starting to take control of proceedings and the newcomer saw his curling effort blocked.

Lalkovic was then unable to dig the ball out from under his feet following a good Enda Stevens’ ball into the box.

But the hosts were level on 34 minutes as Baker picked up a Lalkovic corner and although his shot was saved by Blackman, BURGESS was on hand to bundle the ball over the line.

Chaplin and Baker then both saw strikes blocked as Pompey tried to turn up the pressure and forge ahead.

And that is exactly what they did late in the half after Gareth Evans met Baker’s cross and saw his header blocked by the arm of Sido Jombati.

Robinson pointed straight to the spot and ROBERTS stepped up to emphatically continue his prolific streak with a rocket into the roof of the net.

But, amazingly, there was still time for both sides to add a further goal each in a breathless end to the first half.

First, there was no Blues defender picking up Hayes, who was able to volley a fine curling finish past Forde.

It looked like the sides would go in level at the break, only for a moment of genius from CHAPLIN to lift the Fratton faithful.

The striker ran onto Roberts’ pass, lifted the ball over Anthony Stewart and then, with Blackman off his line, calmly sent a header looping over the keeper and into the net.

Half Time: Pompey 3 Wycombe 2

HIGHLIGHTS

Second Half

Lalkovic did not return following the interval, with Kal Naismith instead taking up the attacking role wide on the left.

Wycombe had a chance to level soon after the restart, but Stewart was unable to guide Wood’s cross on target.

There was immediately an even better chance at the other end, with Roberts somehow failing to turn home Chaplin’s cross from just a few yards out.

But the Blues did increase their advantage on 53 minutes, as Stevens sent the ball to the far post, where BAKER was waiting to squeeze in a volley at Blackman’s near post.

That did not stop Pompey from trying to add to the lead, however, and Naismith bent a shot narrowly over

Blackman then made a mess of dealing with a couple of routine Chaplin efforts, only to escape any punishment.

Wycombe threw on a couple of strikers in Dayle Southwell and Adebayo Akinfenwa to try to find a way back into the game.

It was still Pompey looking more likely to add to the scoring, though, and Stevens was not quite able to beat Blackman from an acute angle following a flowing passing move.

Ultimately, there were to be no more goals, but that mattered not as the Blues saw the rest of the game out to move up to second in the table.

Pompey (4-2-3-1): Forde; Evans, T.Davies, Burgess, Stevens; Rose, Doyle (c); Baker, Roberts (Hunt 88), Lalkovic (Naismith 46); Main (Chaplin 25)
Goals: Burgess 34, Roberts 43 (pen), Chaplin 45+3, Baker 53
Booked: Roberts, Baker, T.Davies
Subs not used: O’Brien, Clarke, Linganzi, Smith

Wycombe (4-1-4-1): Blackman; Jombati (Akinfenwa 80), Stewart, Pierre, Harriman; Rowe (McGinn 86); Thompson, Bloomfield, Gape, Wood; Hayes (c) (Southwell 80)
Goals: Hayes 10, 45
Booked: Pierre, Jombati, Thompson, Gape, Rowe, Blackman, Stewart
Subs not used: Richardson, De Havilland, Kashket, Freeman

Referee: Tim Robinson

Attendance: 16,262 (489 away fans)

Portsmouth FC
Apr 232016
 
League 2
Portsmouth 2 – 1 Wycombe Wanderers

 

Roberts and Chaplin secure victory

Pompey have all but secured a place in the top seven following a 2-1 victory over Wycombe at Fratton Park.

The completely controlled the first half and the impressive Gary Roberts deservedly fired them ahead.

Conor Chaplin then came off the bench to double the advantage and seemingly wrap up all three points.

But Sido Jombati’s fine free-kick set-up a nervy finale and there were plenty of chewed fingernails by the time referee Dean Whitestone blew the final whistle.

Paul Cook made three changes from the side so comprehensively beaten at York earlier in the week.

Two of them were enforced, with the injured duo of Adam Webster and Kyle Bennett making way for a fit-again Christian Burgess and Roberts.

The other switch saw Michael Smith drop to the bench and Kal Naismith come in wide on the left.

Wycombe were first to threaten once the game got started and Paul Jones had to gather the ball on the edge of his box to deny the rampaging Gozie Ugwu.

But as the half progressed, the hosts began to take complete control of proceedings in front of another large crowd.

Michael Doyle fed a fine pass through to Roberts, although he then cut the ball back to absolutely no-one.

Roberts, however, was at the heart of everything the Blues did going forward, dictating play with a number of clever passes.

Pompey kept knocking at the door in search of an opening goal and Gareth Evans fired into the side netting before Naismith’s cross was nervously dealt with.

They almost broke the deadlock on 23 minutes when Doyle dispossessed former Fratton loanee Marcus Bean in the centre to start an attack.

Roberts picked the ball up and his drive was parried clear by Ryan Allsop, while Danny Hollands’ follow-up was deflected safely into the keeper’s arms.

It was Roberts who went close again moments later, but after brilliantly controlling Christian Burgess’ pass and side-stepping a defender, he curled his shot over the bar.

Matt Clarke’s surging run then created a chance for the lively Marc McNulty and his effort was also narrowly off target.

Wycombe were struggling to hang on, with their rare attacks quickly blunted and their defence then having to deal with a wave of blue.

Naismith should have scored on 36 minutes, only to completely mis-hit his shot after being picked out in the box by Burgess.

The Fratton faithful did not have to wait long for a goal to celebrate, however.

It was ROBERTS who deservedly scored, sliding in to poke the ball home from close range following more excellent McNulty work down the right.

That failed to dampen Pompey’s attacking mentality and they continued to pour forward in search of more goals.

Naismith almost obliged just before the break after collecting a short corner, but his lashed effort cannoned back off the inside of the post.

Half Time: Pompey 1 Wycombe 0

HIGHLIGHTS

Second Half

Despite the hosts’ almost total dominance in the first half, they almost found themselves back on level terms just after the restart.

Ugwu rose highest to flick on Jombati’s cross and Jones flung himself to the left to palm the ball behind.

But Pompey then had a chance to double their lead, only for Roberts to hit a tame effort straight at Allsop when a pass for McNulty looked the better option.

Cook made a double substitution on the hour mark, with McNulty and Ben Davies making way for Chaplin and Kieron Freeman.

And CHAPLIN only had to wait seven minutes to get his name on the scoresheet and halt the Chairboys’ revival.

The striker latched onto an excellent long pass from Doyle and although his shot was scuffed, the ball trickled into the bottom corner.

That appeared to settle the nerves, but the tension soon ramped up when Wycombe reduced the deficit on 73 minutes.

Doyle was penalised for a foul on Bean on the edge of the box and Jombati stepped up to curl the free-kick over the wall and into the net.

There was a sense of panic around the stadium and that only grew when Jason McCarthy drilled in a shot that had to be hacked from the line by a well-placed Freeman.

Pompey were soon looking dangerous on the break, however, and Allsop did well to deny Roberts following a sumptuous pass over the top by Chaplin.

Wycombe were pushing men forward in search of a leveller and Garry Thompson’s volley was pushed clear by Jones.

Burgess then did well to clear the ball from a crowded box after a corner had led to a nervy scramble.

There were a few groans when the fourth official announced an additional five minutes, but Pompey held on to secure the victory.

Pompey (4-2-3-1): Jones; Davies (Freeman 60), Burgess, Clarke, Stevens; Hollands, Doyle (c); Evans, Roberts, Naismith (McGurk 77); McNulty (Chaplin 60)
Goals: Roberts 37, Chaplin 67
Booked: Chaplin
Subs not used: Murphy, Barton, Close, Smith

Wycombe (4-1-4-1): Allsop; McCarthy, Stewart, Pierre, Jombati; Rowe; Sellars (Liburd 82), Bean, Harriman (Kretzschmar 72), Hayes (c) (Thompson 67); Ugwu
Goals: Jombati 73
Booked: Stewart, Bean
Subs not used: Siegrist, Jacobson, McGinn, Sellers

Referee: Dean Whitestone

Attendance: 16,187 (737 away fans)

Nov 282015
 
League 2
Wycombe Wanderers 2 – 2 Portsmouth

 

Caolan Lavery and Adam Webster were on target as Pompey fought from two goals down to snatch a point at Wycombe.

It looked like they would leave empty-handed when Michael Harriman and Garry Thompson netted within the space of three first half minutes.

But Lavery grabbed a lifeline just before the interval before Webster levelled with a thumping header after it.

Paul Cook made one change to the side that romped to a 6-0 victory over York during the week.

Adam McGurk came into the attacking three behind lone striker Lavery, with Gareth Evans dropping to the bench.

Jayden Stockley was also named among the substitutes having missed the last nine games with an ankle injury.

There was not much excitement to warm the crowd up in the opening stages, with chances at a premium.

Marc McNulty could only head a Ben Davies free-kick wide, while Danny Hollands was forced to divert a corner over his own crossbar at the other end.

The hosts tried to liven things up with a clever free-kick routine midway through the first half, but after Sam Wood cheekily flicked the ball up, Paul Hayes could only fire into the wall.

Wycombe were gifted the lead on 28 minutes, however, when Brian Murphy charged from his box and sent a clearance straight to Luke O’Nien.

The midfielder’s effort was blocked, but the ball fell to Harriman, who calmly finished from 30 yards with Pompey’s keeper yet to get back into position.

And things soon got even worse for the visitors as, less than three minutes later, Harriman got clear down the right and swung in a dangerous cross that Thompson fired home.

The Blues tried to hit back, with Lavery and Kyle Bennett both denied by some last-gasp defending from the Chairboys.

But it took a fine stop from Murphy to stop them falling further behind on 38 minutes, with the keeper spreading himself to deny Wood from point-blank range.

Pompey had been well below-par, although they finished the half with a flourish and Aaron Pierre diverted Enda Stevens’ low cross just past his own post.

And the visitors grabbed a lifeline in stoppage-time after McNulty beat the offside trap to latch onto Christian Burgess’ threaded pass and unselfishly squared for LAVERY to slot home.

Half Time: Wycombe 2 Pompey 1

HIGHLIGHTS

Second Half

Cook made a switch at the start of the second half, with Hollands making way for Adam Barton in midfield.

Pompey soon had a chance when Davies delivered a free-kick into the area, but Wycombe were able to scramble clear and referee Mark Haywood ignored Webster’s pleas for a penalty.

WEBSTER was celebrating on 55 minutes, however, when he was left unmarked to convert Davies’ corner with a bullet header that was too powerful for Chairboys keeper Matt Ingram to keep out.

Hayes had his own chance from a set-piece moments later, but he could only divert the ball straight into Murphy’s arms.

The Blues then surged straight down the other end and Pierre made a decent block to keep out McGurk’s effort.

Cook made his second switch on 67 minutes, with Evans getting a chance to impress in place of McGurk.

He soon made an impact, but after ghosting in at the near post, was unable to divert a corner from Davies on target.

And Evans was in the thick of action again moments later, only to be denied by a vital Anthony Stewart block after Lavery had done well to hold the ball up.

Bennett was next go close when he cut along the edge of the box before firing in a shot that Ingram did well to beat away.

And Burgess thought he should have been awarded a penalty on 84 minutes after going to ground under Pierre’s challenge while trying to attack a corner.

Pierre then fouled Lavery right on the edge of the box and Davies’ free-kick was pushed clear by Ingram.

It was Pompey who were doing all the attacking as the game entered its closing stages, but they were unable to find a late winner.

Wycombe (4-4-2): Ingram; McCarthy, Stewart, Pierre, Jombati; Harriman (Kretzschmar 90+3), Bloomfield, O’Nien, Wood; Hayes (c) (Amadi-Holloway 81), Thompson
Goals: Harriman 28, Thompson 30
Booked: McCarthy, Pierre
Subs not used: Richardson, Rowe, Banton, Sellers, Ugwu

Pompey (4-2-3-1): Murphy; Davies, Burgess, Webster, Stevens; Hollands (Barton 46), Doyle (c); McGurk (Evans 67), McNulty, Bennett (Tollitt 89); Lavery
Goals: Lavery 45+2, Webster 55
Subs not used: Bass, Clarke, Chaplin, Stockley

Referee: Mark Haywood

Attendance: 5,816 (1,976 Pompey fans)

Portsmouth FC