Defeated Pompey pay the penalty

112881-3939) POMPEY v BRIGHTON (SR) 13/8/2011''Pompey v Brighton at Fratton Park today  // 13/8/2011// ''Picture: Steve Reid (112881-???

112881-3939) POMPEY v BRIGHTON (SR) 13/8/2011''Pompey v Brighton at Fratton Park today // 13/8/2011// ''Picture: Steve Reid (112881-???

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Pompey fell to a frustrating defeat in their south coast showdown with Brighton today.

Craig Mackail-Smith got the only goal of the game on the stroke of half-time to give the visitors the points.

And Liam Lawrence missed a penalty with the last kick of the game to compound Pompey’s pain.

It was rough justice on Steve Cotterill’s side who deserved something from the game.

Pompey started with high energy after their poor loss to Barnet on Tuesday night.

There was a great atmosphere at Fratton Park, too, with the home fans celebrating the surprise return of Benjani to Fratton Park.

But that feelgood factor didn’t translate to a result as Mackail-Smith bundled home a scrappy strike just before the interval, after substitute Craig Noone danced into the box.

There was plenty of huff and puff from the Blues after the break, but that goal they deserved just wouldn’t arrive.

One of their best chances in the second half saw Luke Varney’s header flash across goal, and just missing the on-rushing Dave Kitson.

Then came the late frustration as Lewis Dunk handled at the death.

But captain Liam Lawrence fired his spot-kick against the post to complete Pompey’s heartache.

Pompey have one point from their opening two league fixtures of the campaign ahead of Tuesday’s visit from Reading.

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