Stylish Pompey kick off season with a win

Conor Chaplin and Kal Naismith celebrate with Kyle Bennett following his opener Picture: Joe Pepler

Watch: Pompey 2-1 Newport County highlights

53
Have your say

The Paul Cook era began in style with a 3-0 win over Dagenham & Redbridge

Three second-half goals did the damage as Gareth Evans opened the scoring before two fine strikes from Kyle Bennett delivered a dominant win.

That ensured the Blues picked up their first opening-day success since 2006 on a perfect afternoon at Fratton Park.

Pompey were full of creative football and vigour as a crowd of 16,948 lapped up the occasion.

Cook sprung a surprise as he played new signing Brian Murphy in goal in place of Paul Jones.

The only question after the first 45 minutes was how were Pompey not leading?

Gareth Evans is mobbed by his Pompey team-mates after opening the scoring at Fratton Park Picture: Joe Pepler

Gareth Evans is mobbed by his Pompey team-mates after opening the scoring at Fratton Park Picture: Joe Pepler

The Blues started at a furious pace with the home crowd responding well.

Christian Burgess headed wide after four minutes, before Kyle Bennett fizzed a shot over the top from just inside the box 10 minutes later.

Then Matt Tubbs nearly forced an opener out of nothing, but Mark Cousins saved his drive from the edge of the box well.

Jamie Cureton flashed a header wide on 24 minutes in his side’s only noteworthy effort.

Pompey continued to dominate but Gareth Evans could only fire into the side-netting four minutes before the interval.

The goal arrived six minutes after the restart as Evans headed home from Bennett’s corner.

That lifted any tension being felt and Pompey furthered their advantage after 62 minutes.

Enda Stevens’ quick throw freed Bennett, who danced across the box and fired home off the bar.

Bennett then put the icing on the cake with 16 minutes left as Gary Roberts stole the ball off Josh Passley.

Roberts freed the attacker who advanced and blitzed home a peach of a strike from 25 yards.

Pompey cruised home from there with the performance matching the expectation going into the league curtain raiser.

Back to the top of the page