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McKeown: Howler
McKeown: Howler

The Bell Chimes

By: Rob Sedgwick
Date: 15/03/2017

PORTSMOUTH completed the double over the Mariners with an emphatic 4-0 win at Fratton Park last night. After a bright start by Town Pompey struck against the run of play with a deflected goal. A second deflected goal extended the lead and Town were left chasing shadows as the home side completely dominated the match.

Marcus Bignot rung the changes with five new faces in the starting line-up compared to the side which beat Orient 3-0 at the weekend. Luke Maxwell, Ben Davies, Jamey Osborne, Scott Vernon and Akwasi Asante all lined up at the start.

Asante looked bright in the opening minutes as Town, cheered on by a large away contingent, tore into Portsmouth. The Town striker forced a diving save from David Forde and Zal Mills also went close wing a long-range effort. However, the scene was set when an effort by Bennett, which probably wouldn't have troubled McKeown, took a big deflection off Collins to give the Town 'keeper no chance.

Pompey soon began to dominate and it was no great surprise when Rose added a second, although this too took a large deflection off Davies.

Town were left chasing shadows and were seemingly unable to get the ball out of their own half. A third goal soon followed when Naismith picked out Baker, who spun and shot past McKeown.

Any hopes of a second-half comeback ended when McKeown spilt the ball early in the second half and Naismith slammed it in from close range to leave Town's keeper embarrassed.

Town rarely troubled Pompey in the remainder of the game as the points were sealed.

Grimsby are consistently inconsistent, although all the changes meant that a completely untested line-up took the field. It's a bit early in the season to field experimental sides with Grimsby, at least before the game, still in with an outside chance of making the play-offs. Perhaps the 50-point target has resulted in the brakes being eased off?

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