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Match Reports

Imps 0 Portsmouth 3

23 November 2021

Match Reports

Imps 0 Portsmouth 3

23 November 2021

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The Imps suffered a frustrating home defeat at the hands of Portsmouth.

Michael Appleton handed Freddie Draper his first professional start after impressing in his five appearances off the bench this season after making his senior debut at the end of October. TJ Eyoma and Ted Bishop also came back into the starting XI.

The returning Bishop was the first to muster a shot on target in a cagey opening period, cutting inside after seven minutes but sending his shot straight at Gavin Bazuna.

Ronan Curtis was Pompey’s greatest threat by some distance, sending efforts wide after 12 and 17 minutes - and forcing the first significant save of the match from Josh Griffiths inbetween them.

Lewis Montsma cleared a Connor Ogilvie effort following a Shaun Williams free-kick, and immediately set the Imps away on a quick counter-attack - Chris Maguire was stopped with a key interception with the only damage done for a the visitors a throw-in.

Draper continued his impressive start to life as a professional footballer with impressive movement off the ball, with Kieron Freeman nicking the ball off his toes after 24 minutes after Poole's attempt to play him through on goal. Four minutes later visiting captain Sean Raggett was shown the yellow card after hauling him down to stop an attack.

The visitors were clearly well drilled and playing with confidence when they had the ball, with Curtis again flashing a low effort after 25 minutes after choosing to let Marcus Harness' run act as a diversion.

Draper's runs off the ball continued to be dangerous, with Ogilvie getting a vital toe to deflect Poole's ball down the channel looking to send him away after 36 minutes.

A couple of minutes later Sorensen was bundled over in the area by Reece Hackett-Fairchild, but referee Ross Joyce felt it was a fair challenge from the Pompey man.

The final chances of the half fell the way of the visitors, with Harness sending an effort straight at Griffiths and George Hirst forcing a good low stop from Griffiths.

The visitors struck in the final seconds of time added on, with Harness blasting the ball past Griffiths.

Mahlon Romeo went close to doubling the visitors' advantage seven minutes after the restart with a stinging low shot which Griffiths got down well to tip onto the inside of the far post.

But the Imps enjoyed more possession as they pushed and probed looking for a way back not the game.

Maguire got away down the left with a good cross which was just too far ahead of Conor McGrandles, while Fiorini curled an effort wide from deep on the other side of the pitch.

Bishop went agonisingly close after 57 minutes after getting away down the left, curling a right-footed effort just over the bar.

That was one of his last contributions to the game as he then made way for Dan Nlundulu, who quickly made his mark by winning the ball close to the halfway line and getting away from several people before his run was stopped just outside the area.

But the visitors doubled their advantage after 66 minutes when George Hirst turned in Curtis' cross from the right.

The Imps pushed as the game entered the final 20 minutes, with Fiorini flashing an effort wide after 71 minutes.

Bazunu was forced into action again by Adelakun, who had replaced Sorensen, as he blocked an effort then Nlundulu sent the rebound crashing back off the near post - although the offside flag was up meaning it would not have counted anyway.

Nlundulu went agonisingly close with an effort after brilliantly beating Williams to Poole's low cross from the right, only to see it creep just wide of the near post.

In the end it was the visitors who got the third goal, with Hacket-Fairchild firing home from a rebound after his initial free-kick from a central position was blocked by the Imps wall.

Attendance: 8,553 (746 away)

For full match stats, line-ups, on the day results and league table check out our match centre.

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