Pompey Progress In Paint Trophy

Portsmouth are through to the next round of the Johnstone's Paint Trophy after a well earned 2-1 win at Oxford United.

The first half was a cure for insomnia from a Pompey perspective. The U's dominated possession and it took an instinctive save from Trevor Carson to deny James Constable a goal as he stopped him from turning in Ryan Williams's cross.

The home side had a couple of other chances as Guy Whittingham's men barely ventured out of their own half in a poor performance up until half-time.

The second half started in the same manner but Pompey had improved and even mustered a tame shot on target from Romain Padovani which was cheered like a goal by the 1,132 visiting fans.

The game turned on the hour mark when Patrick Agyemang came off the bench for Padovani, but not before Oxford almost scored twice when Carson saved Constable's shot and Yassin Moutaouakil cleared the follow up off the line.

Pompey then took the lead thanks to a superb goal from Agyemang. The substitute cleverly took the ball past two Oxford defenders before cutting inside and curling the ball past the helpless Ryan Clarke. A beauty.

John Marquis then squandered a great opportunity to score when he put himself through on goal by blocking Asa Hall's attempted clearance but his shot found the side netting with only Clarke to beat.

The Millwall loanee made amends soon after by glancing Moutaouakil's perfect cross past the Oxford goalkeeper to effectively kill the game off.

That was until some poor defending saw Constable rifle a loose ball past Carson in the last minute of normal time in the game but there was to be no late collapse this time and Pompey held on for the win.

Guy Whittingham deserves some credit for changing his team when things were not happening for his team. Bringing on Agyemang worked to turn the match in Pompey's favour after Oxford dominated the first half and controlled the game from then on.

Whilst some may mock Portsmouth's participation in this competition it does have its financial rewards and it's another win to keep the momentum going heading into Saturday's match at Plymouth.

The draw for the next round of the Johnstone's Paint Trophy will take place on Soccer AM this Saturday morning. Pompey's potential opponents are Newport County, Swindon Town, Wycombe Wanderers, Leyton Orient, Peterborough United, Stevenage and Dagenham & Redbridge.

Four games away from Wembley...