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Young Pompey Defeated By Janners
Plymouth Argyle 3 Portsmouth 0
A very young Portsmouth team were beaten comfortably by Plymouth last night, but the players can be pleased with their performance having given their seniors a few scares in the second half.
The night will be remembered by some of the 753 travelling fans for the antics in the Fansfest tent prior to the game. The Janners in there were very supportive of our plight and organised a collection for the club and wished us well.
There were plenty of poor jokes and songs to be sung by the live band but it was all good natured banter and it was great to see so many Argyle fans wish us well, having been through the mire themselves last year. You will not meet a more friendly and welcoming bunch of supporters and that will live long in the memory for me.
As for the match itself, a young side marshalled by coach Ashley Westwood was soon made even younger when the elder statesman of the team was injured and substituted for 17-year-old Jack Maloney.
The hosts dominated the first half in truth and should have been ahead early on if not for some woeful finishing or some last-ditch defending from the Pompey lads.
It looked like the young team might hold on until the break but they were undone by a corking strike from Johnny Gorman. At an angle, he managed to lash the ball into the top corner of the net, with little that Simon Eastwood could do about it.
That goal may have dampened spirits on a wet evening in Devon for the Pompey players but they came out fighting in the second half.
The impressive Maloney had a couple of shots on goal whilst Adam Webster showed what he could do as he cut inside and fired the ball just wide.
Nick Chadwick could have put the result beyond doubt as he was put through one-on-one with Eastwood but his lob went wide of the post.
Ashley Harris almost made him pay for that as he took the ball past three Plymouth players before curling the ball just outside the post from the edge of the box.
Webster did something similar as the ball looked to the Pompey fans like it might find the bottom corner of the net but his fierce shot went just wide of the far post.
Unfortunately the game was put to bed four minutes from time when Paris Cowan-Hall, a player deemed not good enough to make it at Portsmouth a year ago, nodded in a corner.
Chadwick then took advantage of a mistimed clearance to smash the ball in from close range to add gloss to the scoreline, although Jed Wallace had his last-minute effort saved to prevent Pompey from scoring when they probably deserved to.
Even though this game would seem like a wasted journey on paper, it will always be remebered by me for watching a young, hungry team give their all for the club and for the amazing show of support from the Plymouth fans which proved that fans can be united in adversity.
Despite that, Michael Appleton needs to be allowed to bring in some players quickly otherwise we will see a repeat result when Bournemouth come to Fratton Park on Saturday.
But given the announcement from Balram Chainrai today, that looks like it's going to be a complicated process.
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