Pompey Draw With City
City Of Manchester Stadium
Wednesday 23-08-06, 7:45pm
Pompey's first away game of the season saw them come away from Manchester with a point, following a 0-0 draw with Manchester City.
Ben Thatcher was lucky to remain on the field following an elbow on Pedro Mendes, with Pompey also unlucky not to be awarded a penalty.
Richard Dunne's header over the bar from a Joey Barton corner would see the games first, and only chance of the opening 20 minutes come and go.
The next effort would be from Barton himself, a 20 yard effort beating David James, returning to the City of Manchester Stadium for the first time, but narrowly going wide.
With Pompey still to have a chance Georgios Samaras would put an effort over the bar on the half hour with a header.
The first Pompey chance would fall to Gary O'Neil but he could only put a difficult volleyed effort into the side netting.
Trevor Sinclair's effort would be blocked by Dejan Stefanovic as a fairly uneventful half, in which Benjani was caught offside on numerous occasions, came to an end.
Early in the second half would come one of games main talking points. As Ben Thatcher and Pedro Mendes went for a ball (at least Mendes went for the ball!) Thatcher throw an elbow which connected with Mendes' head. Mendes would crash into the advertising hoardings, and then receive lengthily treatment before being withdrawn in place on Richard Hughes. Thatcher was booked.
A Barton foul on Matty Taylor shortly after Mendes' eventual withdrawal would give Pompey free-kick, which Sean Davis would put into the City wall.
A five minute spell would see City and Pompey exchange throw ins, taken by Micah Richards and Stefanovic respectively.
As the second half neared the midway point Taylor would force Nicky Weaver into his first and only real meaningful save of the game with a decent strike, well saved.
A game of few real chances would then roll until its conclusion, although Pompey should have had what appeared a blatant penalty. Richards' handball somehow missed by referee Dermott Gallagher.
Pedro Mendes' injury from a horrific Ben Thatcher elbow will be of concern to Harry Redknapp (who is fuming!) and all concerned with Pompey as it looked a nasty injury, which saw him taken away in an ambulance.
A draw and another clean sheet represent a decent result for Pompey. Most would have wanted a win but a draw is still a good result against a decent and generally well organised side.
Manchester City -
Dejan Stefanovic (c)
Pedro Mendes (Richard Hughes 52)
Benjani (Svetoslav Todorov 65)
Substitutes Not Used