Pompey inch closer to safety

Last updated : 12 April 2004 By Alex Dale
Portsmouth's run of four games unbeaten - with three wins - couldn't have come at a better time as Portsmouth prepare for a tough run-in featuring both Arsenal and Man Utd, trying to fend off a resurgent Leeds United.

A free-kick from Dejan Stefanovic, just minutes after Yakubu's effort was chalked off by the ever-controversal Barry Knight who instead send off Maik Taylor for handelling Martin Taylor's hashed attempt of a clearance outside of his area.

In the second half, as is often the case, their ten men fared well against Portsmouth's eleven, but on the hour were dealt a bodyblow to their hopes of returning to the midlands with points in tow as Yakubu drilled home an angled shot.
Birmingham weren't dead and buried yet, though - Stern John ensured the game remained in the melting pot - until the 72nd minute when Kenny Cunningham handled in the area, allowing Yakubu and Portsmouth to restore the two-goal advantage.

It all meant that Portsmouth were as high up as sixteenth - equal on points with Man City, who drew at Tottenham, and three points above Leeds in 18th, and Blackburn, who were supposedly in freefall.

Until Blackburn won 4-3 at Fulham later in the day. Still, it was nice while it lasted.