Portsmouth 1:1 Leicester City
David Nugent’s superb strike against his former club earned Nigel Pearson’s side a creditable point from the trip to the south coast on Saturday…
Nigel Pearson named an unchanged side, despite Sol Bamba being available after suspension, while new Pompey boss Michael Appleton started with new loan signing Joe Mattock, who was booed by the visiting fans through the first half.
This at least gave them something to do, because otherwise the first half was pretty dour. Early on Peltier cut in from the right and set himself up for a shot on goal but missed the target; Nugent sent an effort narrowly over; and a long range Gallagher free-kick flew just over, but that really was it.
Pompey stepped up a gear in the second half and should have gone ahead soon after the break, but Schmeichel produced perhapos his best save in a City shirt to date, blocking a Kitson header from just 5 yards out.
City also had their chances with Henderson saving well from Dyer and Mills going close.
But it was Pompey who took the lead soon after Pearson had reorganised, bringing Howard and Danns on for Gallagher and Beckford. In the 68th minute Norris picked up a half clearance on th eedge of the box and beat Schmeichel via a big deflection off Mills.
City were level 6 minutes later, however, following great work from Nugent. He dcleverly dummied King’s pass, to him which allowed Howard to send him through and with defenders closing in the former-Pompey man drilled a 22 yarder into the bottom left hand corner.
City survived a late scare when Norris swerved a fierce shot against the left hand upright, Schmeichel regaining his feet and throwing himself across goal to save Mullins’ follow up effort.
Although you might think City would be content with a point from such a tough fixture Nigel Pearson disagreed: “I know this is a difficult place to come but I think we need to have higher expectations of ourselves. The encouraging thing is that we finished the game well and the players showed a determination to get back into the game having gone a goal behind.”
Portsmouth: Henderson, Halford, Rocha, Pearce, Mattock, Ward, Thorne, Mullins, Huseklepp, Norris, Kitson. Unused Subs: Ashdown, Mokoena, Benjani, Ben Haim, Kanu.
Leicester: Schmeichel, Peltier, Mills, St Ledger, Konchesky, Gallagher (Danns 65), King, Wellens, Dyer, Nugent, Beckford (Howard 65). Unused Subs: Weale, Bamba, Fernandes.
Referee: Phil Gibbs (West Midlands). Attendance: 14,391.