Portsmouth gained a deserved yet hard-fought 2-1 win against Southampton in the Football Men’s 2nds, in a feisty Varsity encounter. Two goals from captain James Ashton secured the win
There was little action to speak of in the opening period of the game, with Southampton having the only real effort of note. The Pompey goalkeeper got down well to his right to keep the score at 0 – 0.
The rivalry between the two sides was clear to see, and a scrap mid-way through the first half led to one Portsmouth player and one Southampton player each being shown a red card. Both teams would now have to a play a large period of the game with 10 men.
The away side adapted better to the sending’s off, and were awarded a penalty after a clumsy challenge in the box. Ashton made no mistake from the spot, and went in at half time one goal to the good.
After the break, Pompey got a chance to double their lead with another penalty. Although many Southampton fans watching the game weren’t happy with the decision, the spot-kick was emphatically dispatched to give Portsmouth a cushion, and Ashton’s second of the tie.
Southampton were then reduced to nine men when a player who was already on a yellow card made a silly challenge. The referee didn’t hesitate to give him his marching orders.
Remarkably, the nine men of Wessex got back into the game when they piled forward and netted a scrappy goal. It had been one of their only chances of the second half, but it had given them hope of getting something out of the game.
However, in the end they ran out of time and Pompey secured yet another win in the football. If the high tensions didn’t prove it already, the celebrations from the team and fans on the pitch after the game showed that there was still some purple passion left from Portsmouth’s fledgling Varsity teams.