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Havant & Waterlooville 0 - Portsmouth 4

West Leigh Park

5th August 2008 7.45

Attendance:

Havant & Waterlooville vs. Portsmouth

A sultry summer's evening at West Leigh Park was the setting for Pompey's final pre season friendly before the (perhaps not so friendly) Wembley curtain-raiser on Sunday.

Having played only 24 hours earlier, it was no surprise that Pompey made wholesale changes to the starting line up, which was

GK Jamie Ashdown

LB Marc Wilson
RB Glen Johnson
CB Hermann Hreidarsson
CB Linvoy Primus (captain for the evening)

Midfield

LM Arnold Mvuemba
RM Glen Little
CM Sean Davis
CM Richard Hughes

Up front

John Utaka
Ben Sahar

On the bench were Jean-Francoise Christophe, Richard Duffy and Paris Cowan-Hall

Pompey dominated from the start, though Jamie Ashdown was the first keeper called into action with a save from the Hawks' No.9

Short passing out from defence and quick ball through the midfield was the order of the day and after 7 minutes Pompey were one up as Mvuemba threaded a ball through to Sahar who comfortably beat the keeper from 10 yards.

Sahar continued to show strong running throughout the opening 15 minutes and Utaka was given the freedom of the last third of the field by the Havant back four but over elaboration let him and a number of other players down at the last minute.

Sean Davis played his usual competitive game and had to apologise to the opposition and the referee on more than one occasion. After 20 minutes his shot from 25 yards was just the wrong side of the post with the 'keeper beaten. This was quickly followed by a header from Linvoy from a corner, which brought a huge cheer from the crowd.

The game lacked any width until Hermann switched to left back with Marc Wilson moving into the centre, allowing Hermann to make a number of charges up the wing but the crosses came to nothing. On the right hand side, Glen Little, who looked sluggish throughout, seemed content to confine his involvement to neat one-twos with Glen Johnson, allowing the latter to make regular forays up and down the touchline.

Five minutes from half time, Little decided that a cross in to the centre might pay better dividends than the normal return pass to Johnson and Sahar out jumped the central defender for a neat header in to the corner.

Half time Havant 0-2 Pompey

Richard Duffy replaced the ineffective Marc Wilson for the second half and slotted in at left back, allowing Hermann to resume a central position.

Pompey continued to dominate and another Johnson cross almost allowed Sahar his hat trick. Johnson then followed this up with a pile driver of a shot, which the keeper saved well. They then upped the pressure further and four successive corners saw Mvuemba, Johnson and Utaka all go close.

Jean-Francoise Christophe replaced Sean Davis after 75 minutes and immediately forced a corner, from which Johnson hit the cross bar.

With Havant visibly tiring, and making numerous changes (Guy Butters and Luke Nightingale both appearing as second half substitutes), Pompey were now in total control. A stirring run from Richard Hughes saw both Utaka and Mvuemba go close and both should probably have done better than they did. Havant's efforts on goal were restricted to long range shots, none of which troubled Jamie Ashdown.

With five minutes to go a cross field ball from Little found Utaka; his neat back heel to Mvuemba set up a stunning drive in to the top corner. 0-3

In the final minute a short corner found Richards Hughes who fed Glen Johnson and from an acute angle he thumped the ball high into the net for a goal richly deserved.

Final Score

Havant & Waterlooville 0-4 Pompey

Sahar 7, 40
Mvuemba 85
Johnson 89

Match Summary

A one sided game. Given what I have read about him on site, Glen Little was a big disappointment. He looked laboured in his movement and seemed very right footed. Sahar is a strong lad though both he and Utaka were non existent in the second half.

It was nice to see Linvoy in a Pompey shirt again though for the first 15 minutes he looked hesitant. Other than coming up for one corner he was content to be the last line of defence.

It was a shame Cowan-Hall didn't get a run out in the latter stages, particularly as Pompey were so dominant.

Glen Johnson was tireless in his efforts all game; he and Hermann were perhaps the class acts of the evening.

It's hard to decide what Harry will get from this game as I can't see more than 2 or 3 players making the starting line up on Sunday. Perhaps, given the previous game was only played the day before, that's all it was ever going to be.

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The Journalist

Writer: UKTony/pompey4me Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Wednesday August 6 2008

Time: 7:58AM

Your Comments

Cracking report Tone...thanks for the acknowledgement on the bottom, but all i can take credit for is navigator and eyes when you couldn't see the far touchline...lol. Apparentley the radio commentators were raving about Little, we didn't see much about hm last night though, did we.
pompey4me
thanks for the report tony - and p4me, he put your name to it too - much appreciated guys...
its funny how views from those on the radio differ to you 2, even more so as its not like they werent there - but i will trust your judgement tho :-)
pompeyrug
Then they must have been watching a different game. I think we stand by what we say, though he did supply the crosses for two of the goals - does that make him better? I was still unimpressed.
UKTony
Nice to see the legend that is Alan Knight during the pre match warm up
UKTony
Not easy to watch, take it all in & report back. We all see things & take things differently. Well done lads.
storagematt
I am liking this match report! I think UKTony should be a regular.
sneakay
Very good lads. What's the general feeling with Sahar? Do you think he will start many games this season? He seems lively.
ChrisW
We were impressed but struggled to picture him playing alongside the little and large dream team. Can't see him being content with a seat on the bench either.
UKTony
Matt; you're right it's not easy. You have to concentrate (and ask the bloke next door when you missed something or it was too far away) which dulls the enjoyment somewhat.
UKTony
Everyone else is raving about Glen little's performance... however it is perfectly plausable that some people think that two god crosses make a good game... Mvuemba sounded good though too!
pompeycarpet
Agree with you pompeycarpet about mvuemba he sounded good he didnt have much of a chance last season same as nugent but harry says he is looking for a right winger he should give a try to mvuemba.Johnson sounded class hopefully he will cut that afro now he has score !! lol . Good all round proformance hope to take that into sunday and the new season ! PUP.
stfc ballboy
from the reviews, everything seemed to revolve around sahar, johnson and mvuemba... they could all be great players for us - and all are still young... Does anyone know if we will have "first dips" on signining sahar if he does do well?
pompeycarpet
Carps, Johnson was truly several classes above eveyone else on the pitch. Sahar looked very good, but when is he gonna play? Who you gonna drop, Crouch or Defoe?? i can't see it. Arnie did well, but how will he do against prem opponents? Little just semmed content to let Johnson do everything for him. He never stayed wide, kept coming inside leaving Johnno exposed.
pompey4me
Tony, thought you would have used the televivian joke??!! lol
pompey4me
Damn; forgot all about it
UKTony
Pompey showed that when they wanted to pick the pace up they were more than capable of tearing Havant apart. Mvuemba i think is a central midfielder and i think playing him wide right would be wasting his talent. the sort of waste that we saw with Gary O'neil and Papa Bouba Diop. Mvuemba scored a great goal last night and the back heel from Utaka to set him up was a piece of class. Very disappointed in Little after the rave review given to me by a friend before the match. compared to last year the crowd seemed to be significantly smaller no doubt a reflection on the price rise that Havant saw fit to charge. I'm hoping that when they count up they'll find that they made more money last year, 15 for a preseason game at a non league ground is a bit steep.
Steve C
where are Campbell & Nugent didn't apear in either game are they fit?
pompeyyong
both on the injury table yong,, groins I think (both)
Chix
Richard Duffy... Richard Duffy .. are you having a laugh.. even the photo you guys set me of last night in inconclusive.. There is no such person as Richard Duffy.. it's just a name on the payroll to fool the tax man.. Richard Duffy indeed... pah !
Chix
Steve C. As written inthe report, and by myself above, I thought Little was a dissappointment. Doesn't look like th eanswer on the right does he. OK, that's only one game, but you can usually see enough in a player. I didn't even think he's a good crosser of the ball, rather floated them over instead of 'rifling' them across. Yep, I also commented on the cost, too steep.
pompey4me
Told you in the text message chix, Duffy was the one in blue!
pompey4me
Little will most likely be a good squad player. It sounds like all in all Utaka actually had a decent pre-season and could become a decent player on the right. Other than this Mvuemba sounded class and I fully think that he should be given a chance to step in and fight for a spot.
pompeywa
im still sticking with little being a much better player for us this season than people might think...
pompeyrug
Thanks Chix I was wondering why we have not seen them
pompeyyong
 

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