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Pompey depart Carling cup

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Pompey predictably crashed out of the League cup tonight, we were denied the services of top performers O'Hara and Boateng who were cup-tied along with Tommy Smith and Mike Williamson.
Hermann Hreidarsson surprisingly started, I felt he may of been rested after his long term injury, while the Utaka/Webber strike partnership that was called for got an airing. Vanden Borre started at right-back trying to prove he is an option, while Belhadj provided width to the left.

Pompey got off to a flier, Petrov sliced in a Webber corner in only the 10th minute, luck hasn't gone hand in hand with Pompey so far, but it was certainly a bit of fortune on the night.

But this is Pompey, not content with a bit of luck, Hreidarsson declined the chance to clear and Emile Heskey who only ever seems to score against Pompey was left one-on-one, he slotted past Begovic and the lead lasted 2 minutes.

Buoyed by their goal and Villa gained the upper hand, Milner skinned Brown alive and blasted home a second on 27th minutes, the match was following an all so familiar routine, lax defending and slopping finishing from the home side, an almost blueprint for the season.

The half was seen out under Villa pressure, Pompey were further out to sea than the Isle of Wight, all our frailties were evident and Grant could see the job at hand.

Second half and Pompey decided to make a fist of it, we held all the possesion but lacked a cutting edge, Vanden Borre was bombing forward at every opportunity, but the goal would not come, Hughes and Brown were tidy enough in the middle, but neither could find a killer ball, in fact neither could find a petty thief of a ball, creativity is not the name of their game.

With 3/4's of the game gone, Villa added another, Young's cross deflected onto the head of Downing and the returning midfielder had a comeback goal, Pompey were undone once more, the scoreline may have looked harsh, but the difference in luck/quality/confidence was clear.

Pompey were still pushing, but never threatening, Piquionne had a couple of headers smothered uneasily by Guzan, and then Kanu squirted home from 6 yards to set up a grand finale, trouble is Pompey opened up once again, Young hit home a deflected effort within a minute, and Pompey had scored two and conceded within 2 minutes for the second time in the match, game over and a Pompey crowd left to go home soaked and defeated with 4 goals against fro the second time in 3 days.

Star Player

Vanden Borre, he may not be everyones blue-eyed boy, but he was the main outlet and showed great energy, probably the only highlight of the night.

Player Ratings


Played 2, let in 8, unlike Saturday though may have done better with a couple.

Vanden Borre


Ben Haim

Found Villa a handful


sloppy game by his standards


Leggy performance, done by Villa's pace.


Booked again


Too similar to Brown and thus kept us on the back foot.


Did little to justify a recall


Tried, failed


Big chance, but never had a sniff


Another chance, another inept effort.




couple of headers saved


got 5 minutes

Next up

On saturday we welcome Burnley to the park, we are rock bottom and out of form, Burnley have 1 point away from home, if we are to turn this around this is the day.

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Pompey are like the weather, it never rains but it pours
01/12/2009 21:58:00
so maybe now we can see van borre on the right wing and belhadj on the left of a stand 4-4-2 with o'hara and boateng in the middle, and while we're at it lets just not bother playing strikers they can't score anyway lets just have more attaking midfielders *rolls eyes*
01/12/2009 22:06:00
On saturday we must go all out attack, we are going to concede so lets try and outscore them!
01/12/2009 22:13:00
Got to agree, attack with the pace of Belhadj & VDB. Hopefully with KPB & O'Hara back in our midfield we should actually be able to move forward again. This really is the big one now....loose it and we're nailed.
01/12/2009 22:37:00
It just went all wrong again. I knew that if we played the team that did and Villa played a strong team (which they did) we wernt going to win.
01/12/2009 22:39:00
Having the two defensive midfielders was a waste of time. Let's have attckking midfielders who can get up for the crosses (if and when they come!) and support the front men.
01/12/2009 22:46:00
Our main problem before tonight was scoring. Tonight, we scored twice and conceded within about a minute both times. That needs to be sorted, immediately.
01/12/2009 23:19:00
i would put brown in aswell and have a 4,5,1 but it would be an attacking one with borre and belhadj. begovic, benhaim,kaboul,wilson,herminator, brown borre,ohara,botangbelhadj dindanne that has to be the team !!
01/12/2009 23:47:00
our carling cup perfomances up till today had been solid. I didn't see the game today so can't really make an accurate assessment but under Hart we were becoming hard to score against, now we've shipped 8 goals in 2 games. The awful state of our squad is painfully obvious when we have to play the likes of Hughes, he's honest enough but lacks the quality we so badly need.
Steve C
01/12/2009 23:52:00
Colchester fan, was at the game. Villa's team was so much stronger - look at the fact that they had about ten internationals on the field. Utaka/Webber? Less than impressive! Commiserations, boys!
02/12/2009 05:34:00
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