Vital Football

Pompey Narrowly Beaten

1 - 2

Fratton Park

Thursday 10-08-06, 19:45



Pompey`s one and only home friendly before the Premiership kicks off next weekend saw them narrowly lose 2-1 against former European Champions Porto.

Sol Campbell was presented to the crowd before the kick-off in a match that saw Glen Johnson and David Thompson make their Fratton bows. Svetoslav Todorov would score the Pompey goal in a performance that has been described as "brave and spirited."

It would be a quiet opening ten minutes, but it would be Porto that would threaten the goal first. A good exchange of passes between Vierinha and Marek Cech would end with Cech putting his shot wide.

The first goal of the game would be very soon in coming after that however, a mere sixty seconds later Porto were ahead. Lisandro who would round Dean Kiely before putting the ball into the empty net after he had cut out a poor Noe Pamarot pass.

Kiely would have to be alert a few minutes later to keep out another Lisandro effort. A good move enabling Lisandro to hit a powerful effort that Kiely saved well.

With their first attempt of the game Pompey found themselves level through Sveotslav Todorov`s 23rd minute header. Matty Taylor`s free kick finding the head of the Bulgarian who headed into the corner.

The 56th minute would see the first real chance of the second half. Nick Jordan, who had replaced Dean Kiely at half time did well to keep out an attempted lob from Vierinha.

As with Porto`s first half goal a minute after they had previously been denied they wouldn`t be the second time. Jordan was left stranded as Cech`s free kick was wickedly deflected off Linvoy Primus and into the corner of the goal.

As often happens with friendlies a number of changes would be made by both sides which would disrupt the flow of the game, so chances were few and far between, although the 2004 European Champions almost added a third with time running out, Tarik Sektioui shooting wide.

So a 2-1 defeat to the current Portuguese Champions rounds off Pompey`s pre-season. How much has been learnt will be open to opinion. One thing that will be certain however is the season kicks off in eight days time when we face Blackburn Rovers at Fratton Park.


Pompey - Todorov 23
Porto - Lisandro 12, Cech 57

Dean Kiely (Nick Jordan 45)
Glen Johnson
Linvoy Primus (Andy Griffin 70)
Andy O`Brien
Noe Pamarot
David Thompson (Frank Songo`o 66)
Gary O`Neil (c)
Richard Hughes (Richard Duffy 83)
Sean Davis
Matthew Taylor
Svetoslav Todorov

Date:Thursday August 10 2006
Time: 11:16PM

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the bloke behind me in row l of the fratton end (sorry west stand) said "apart from a 20 minute patch what a dire load of tripe that was, we were lucky to get away with the 1 goal difference". He was about right. This struggling Porto team who have just lost some key players and half their coaching staff were technically superior and fitter! O'Brien was a liability from kick off and rest of the defence was at best shakey. If we are to avoid struggling from the start of the season Sol (who got a good cheer) will need to be a permanent presence (what must he have thought). Mendes didnt play so Taylor & Davis and the rest of the midfield were running around a lot, but with no clear intentions. Todorov got his goal but was otherwise stranded and consequently ineffective. Songo'o surprised me once again by being our main threat once he came on and he seems to link up well with GJ. Deano made some good saves but to neither Row L bloke or my knowledge did he put one NOT ONE of his place kicks anywhere near a Pompey player. I disagreed with pompeypessimist earlier today but he was right, the reality is lads that if there forward line wasnt suffering from a touch of the Benjani's we would have finished three or four down. the club called it a "brave performance" often a phrase used when people are out classed and we were. I know we were without Sol, LuaLua, Mendes & Benjani but the season is a week away and these players will pick up other injuries, the squad is simply not good enough as it is.
11/08/2006 00:02:00
Sides can play ordinary stuff in trial and friendly games but the real benchmark will be when we get out of the boxes against Blackburn. The defence will have Sol Campbell and hopefully the overall shape of the rest of the team will also look better balanced. Big disappointment is the non capture of a decent striker. If this doesn't happen before the end of August we could be in serious trouble.
11/08/2006 05:22:00
D'Alessandro was a very important playmaker and Mendes has a huge influence on our team - without them today it obviously showed why we need some good midfielders - I hope Fernandes is being well looked after, and that Songo'o will get his chance soon. Sol should stiffen up the defence for sure! Hope Benjani is OK....
11/08/2006 08:41:00
Personally I don't think the midfield is too bad, would be nice to get someone else in but I'd easily take at least one forward over two midfielders at this point...
11/08/2006 09:15:00
lots of hopes there StuartM, D'Alessandro looks a better bargain by the day. Still during the ONLY worthwhile game we arranged we looked very ordinary. I am pleased to see Sacha is dealing directly with Udinese over Muntari. What was evident last night is that presently we have little depth and are brittle. We have 18 days to sort that out assuming any new singing gels immeadiately.....but there were two clear positives from the game.......i do look good in my new replica shirt and the girlfriend gave me the 40 quid it cost back when i got home.....result!
11/08/2006 09:16:00
Not the performance i was hoping for, but all things considered was it that bad? we played one up front and were always going to struggle to give them problems defensively. Fantastic delivery from Taylor for the goal with a deft finish by Toddy. I don't see Hughes as anything more than a back up player despite his new contract. Glen Johnson looked good, and i like the look of Songoo give him a chance Harry he could be the natural width we're looking for and he's very very quick. It did highlight the need for more quality to be added to the squad but the names that were missing were significant.
Steve C
11/08/2006 09:18:00
Songo'o is really getting praise isn't he. I have to admit I've not seen him play, but will again echo previous thoughts, growing up in a youth set-up with Fabregas and Messi must mean you have something about you. Let's hope, if he is as good as he's possibly looking 'arry can look past the fact he didn't sign him and keep hold of him...
11/08/2006 11:19:00
and that pompeyrug is my biggest worry, but he's (Harry) stated earlier in the month that in the short term Songo'o wouldnt be allowed to leave, If he's not playing though given his potential perhapse we should loan him out to a championship side.
11/08/2006 11:53:00
There may be some value in loaning Songo'o but only if we sign some width from somewhere. He was signed as one for the future and seems to have something about him so playing matches will only help him.
Steve C
11/08/2006 13:50:00
With the exception of Toddy's goal the only shot on target from a Pompey player was Linvoy's goal in the 2nd half. To win games you need to score and we certainly arn't going to score with only Toddy up front. Lua & Benji injured a striker must be signed this week. Nugent would be superb and would make it in the Premiership. If Preston had won the play off spot they certainly wouldn't of been looking to replace Nugent in the close season. It won't be long before another Premiership team takes the gamble and signs him.
12/08/2006 08:27:00
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