Pompey see of the Us
Attendance: 16,671 (1,180 away fans)
Pompey began their home league campaign with an excellent victory against newly-promoted Cambridge United. It saw Pompey claim their first three points of the season and what was their second victory out of 3 for the campaign so far.
XI: Jones; Webster, Robinson, Whatmough, Shorey (c); Dunne, Hollands; Wallace, Atangana (Devera 45), Storey (Bird 84); Taylor (Holmes 63)
Unused subs: Bass, Butler, Awford, Westcarr
A booming Fratton crowd welcomed the players to the pitch for the first home game of the season, which inevitably lead to the usual wonderful atmosphere. Cambridge played their part with over 1,000 fans, and both sides could be pleased in ways with what they were about to see.
The Us were on the front foot first, scaring the Pompey back four however with no key element for a goal.
It wasn't long until Pompey threatened though, with Wallace taking what seemed a speculative effort,. After spotting 'keeper Chris Dunn of his line, his quick- dipping shot forced Dunn to tip over rather than catch the ball, worrying the United fans behind the goal in the Milton End.
Taylor then had a chance after a long ball came over the top. He spun his defender brilliantly and attempted a lob over Dunn, however the on-rushing keeper did well to throw himself at Taylor and block the shot.
Pompey began to become dominant at this point and it looked as though Taylor had broken the deadlock around 25 minutes in. His powerful shot came agonisingly close but just passed the post.
Miles Storey was next to have a pop. From 30 yards he seemed harmless to the Cambridge goal, but his thunderbolt shot crashed off the bar and had the Fratton crowd on its feet.
Cambridge came close to taking the lead, only for Paul Jones to pull of a great save down low to his right. He went on to have an excellent game.
Pompey did end up taking the lead however, when Ryan Taylor met Storey's cross. The always hard-working striker flicked his header across goal into the bottom corner- a fine finish. Finally the Pompey fans could let out their emotions and cheer.
POMPEY 1-0 Cambridge
Just before the interval, Pompey took a blow when Adam Webster went flying into a challenge. The defender saw his second yellow of the game, and the subsequently following red. This saw Awford make the tactical switch of defender Devera on for Nigel Atangana.
HT: Pompey 1-0 Cambridge
A mediocre start to the second half saw both sides' fans become an even bigger part of the game. Both trying to better each other with chants to lift their side, Pompey with their notorious chant of 'Blue Army!' ringing around the ground for a good 10 minutes!
Pompey somehow didn't better their lead when Whatmough found space in the box. Dunn keeping the wild-haired defender out.
Pompey did double their lead just after the hour mark though- a freak own goal from Tom Bonner. Pompey's constant pressure and banging on the Us' door saw Hughes attempt to clear the ball, only for it to hit team mate Bonner in the back and bounce into the back of the net, sending Pompey fans delirious.
POMPEY 2-0 Cambridge
Immediately after the resulting KO, Cambridge came very close to pulling a goal back through Kwesi Appiah, only for Whatmough to pull off a goal saving challenge. Appiah didn't meet the following corner however and headed home.
Pompey 2-1 CAMBRIDGE
Cambridge then turned on the gas in search for an equaliser against the depleted Pompey. However the 10-man Blues managed to hang on, much to the praise of the Fratton crowd and manager Andy Awford.
FT: POMPEY 2-1 Cambridge
A well hard-fought victory for the Blues on their return to league action at Fratton. A performance worthy of all three points. United could be positive about pushing Pompey all the way, and look a good bet to secure their position in League Two, after years of absence from the Football League.
The result sees Pompey now in 8th, with 4 points, unbeaten in the first two games in the league and three games overall for the campaign. A decent start to the new season! Long may it continue!
Pompey have always seemed to get good keepers, and this looks as no exception, with the new Pompey no.1 impressing his new team mates and fans. You're very much at home here, Paul!