Date:Sunday December 18 2011
Joel Ward, the only player in the Pompey team born in the city was the hero of the hour, he rose to head home with the minutes ticking away and rescue a share of the spoils, and more importantly a share of pride.
Liam Lawrence came straight back into the side after his latest injury, this offset the loss of Luke Varney to his knee injury, otherwise it was as you were.
The scummers bought Kelvin Davis straight back in place of last weeks calamity 'keeper.
The first half was full of passion but low in quality, neither 'keeper was too troubled, Norris saw a low skipping shot bobble narrowly wide, while Halford watched a free-kick not quite curl enough.
Trying to watch the game through a perspective without a rose tint is not easy at the best of times, harder still when it is this fixture, but to be blatantly honest, scum offered very little in the first half to suggest they could win the game or justify their spot at the top, Pompey were not much better to be fair as the game was largely played in midfield, flair being replaced by hard running, guile with graft.
The second half was a different affair, the away side decided to make more of a fist of it and had Pompey more on the back foot, Pompey when the pushed forward could not find a decent pass when it mattered most, Kitson looked isolated up front once more, Lawrence looking short of match fitness as he struggled to stay with the pace of the game.
Just after the hour came the moment all Pompey fans were dreading, a Fox free-kick was sent to the back post and Lambert headed home, just like he did last week against Hull. The away section went nuts as you would expect, some of their chants though would soon seem premature.
Pompey looked shell-shocked for a while, this gave scum the chance to stretch their lead, luckily for us though that both of the next two chances fell to Do Prado, first he hit wide then allowed Henderson to smother his next effort.
Futacs was on for Lawrence and he was making a diffence, his physical presence was being put about and he won a few challenges to get Pompey a foothold.
Time was ticking away though when Joel Ward scored the goal that he had probably fantasised for years about, Thorne sent a delivery to the back post and Ward simply wanted it more than Do Prado, gleefully nodding home in front of an adoring Fratton end.
Both sides wanted the winner but neither had another clear cut chance, so a draw it was.
El Classico it wasn't, both sides took a point but Pompey are probably happier after having come from behind, the return fixture is some months away yet, hopefully both sides will be a little closer in the table by then.
Date:Sunday December 18 2011
|6. Leyton Orient||19||8||6||5||5||30|
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