New-look Blues settle for a draw

Izale McLeod celebrates Pompey's first goal   Picture: Barry Zee
Izale McLeod celebrates Pompey's first goal Picture: Barry Zee
Brett Pitman celebrates his second goal against Fleetwood. Picture: Joe Pepler

Pompey 4 Fleetwood 1: Three Things We Learnt

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Pompey had to settle for a 1-1 draw in their League One opener with Bournemouth today.

Lee Barnard’s 77th-minute header pegged back Izale McLeod’s first-half opener in front of 17,703 fans at Fratton Park.

It looked like Michael Appleton’s new-look side would get their season off to a flier in a dominant first-half.

But the Cherries got back into the game late on as the Blues flagged.

McLeod’s goal after 18 minutes came courtesy of a huge gaffe from visiting keeper Shwan Jalal, as he let his 25-yard shot squirm through his legs.

Pompey should have had a second as they dominated, and McLeod missed a gilt-edged chance when clean through five minutes after the restart.

The visitors were an increasing threat, however, and got their reward for pushing Pompey back with 13 minutes left.

It looked like Purbrook youngster Ashley Harris had won it late on when his 25-yarder cannoned back off the post.

A draw was probably just about the right outcome, but there were plenty of encouraging signs from Appleton’s men for the campaign ahead.