Heskey Buries Unlucky Pompey Again

Last updated : 28 January 2009 By Jim Bonner
Emile Heskey scored the winning goal at Fratton Park for a second time this season to condemn Pompey to yet another defeat which continues the slide down the table.

Apologies for the late article but I can only really echo the general consensus amongst the rest of the Pompey fans in saying that the performance did not deserve defeat but our toothlessness up front cost us a result.

For all of our dominance, especially in the second half, I can only remember us creating a couple of good chances including a golden one for Crouch to score from all of about four yards. Having said that, the game could have been over if it wasn't for Agbonlahor's shocking miss when one-on-one with James in the first half.

I can't add any more to say about Nadir Belhadj than what has already been said too. He was having a poor game and could have easily walked for his kick on Craig Gardner. When he was dismissed it was ridiculous and he should have known better than to argue with the ref did despite his frustration.

Staying on the topic of the officials, I've not heard a referee and the other officials take so much abuse from the home fans for a long time. I don't think Peter Walton was as poor as some people were saying but forgive me for wearing my blue-tinted specs but it did seem like he was giving everything to Villa.

I'm not going to complain about the performance though as it was a million times better than the Swansea showing and I think if we continue to play like that and sign a goalscorer then we won't get relegated.

Hayden Mullins had a solid debut but I was disappointed not to see Pele in the squad. Kanu held the ball up well on his return to the first team but didn't really offer us a threat so why wasn't David Nugent introduced when we had to chase the game?

Adams really has his work cut out now but he still has time to bring in the players that will change our fortunes. Pompey have been heavily linked with Emerson from AC Milan who I would welcome, but I really don't want to see Amdy Faye back in a Pompey shirt!

Spanish midfielder Sunny was on the verge of a move to Fratton Park but the deal has collapsed due to financial reasons whilst nothing more about the Saviola deal has been revealed so hopefully that isn't dead too.

The most important thing now is to get the current crop of players ready for Fulham on Saturday. We also have to remember that a home defeat to a side looking good for the top four isn't the end of the world, especially after outplaying them for long periods of the game.

Pompey Player Ratings

David James: 6 - Nothing to do.

Glen Johnson: 7 - Supported the attack well.

Sol Campbell: 6 - Solid until forced off at half-time.

Sylvain Distin: 7 - Generally good.

Hermann Hreidarsson: 6 - Good return to the first team.

Jermaine Pennant: 6 - Bright in patches.

Hayden Mullins: 6 - Solid debut.

Sean Davis: 6 - Industrious.

Nadir Belhadj: 3 - Bad performance led to reckless challenge and silly red card.

Kanu: 6 - Held the ball up well.

Peter Crouch: 5 - Missed a great opportunity to equalise.


Asmir Begovic

Younes Kaboul (Campbell 46): 6 - Slotted in fine.

Noe Pamarot

Armand Traore

Arnold Mvuemba

John Utaka (Kanu 74): 6 - Almost scored after a fantastic run.

David Nugent