Pompey win on Merit League bow

Jez Bedford was among the goalscorers for Pompey Academy

Jez Bedford was among the goalscorers for Pompey Academy

Paul Cook takes charge of his 100th game in charge of Pompey against Newport on Saturday. Picture: Joe Pepler

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Pompey Academy enjoyed a winning start to their Merit League 2 campaign with a 5-1 victory at Dagenham & Redbridge today.

A double from Dan Smith, plus efforts from Theo Widdrington, Jack Chandler and Jez Bedford earned Mikey Harris’ side a commanding victory in east London.

After a bright start from the visitors, the Blues’ youngsters took the lead on 22 minutes.

A Widdrington free-kick wasn’t dealt with by the home defence and goalkeeper and the ball somehow evaded everyone on its way into the back of the net.

Pompey doubled their advantage 12 minutes later when Chandler scored his first goal of the season following excellent work from Matt Mayes and Smith.

Dagenham spurned a chance to reduce the deficit on 38 minutes and were punished before the break when Smith volleyed home.

Five minutes after half-time, the dominant Blues extended their lead following Bedford’s exchange of passes with Mayes.

The hosts pulled a goal back on 70 minutes after Pompey made a string of substitutions.

But it was the Blues who had the last word, when Smith completed the scoring on 79 minutes after being set up by Harvey Bradbury.

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