Moneyfields opened their pre-season campaign with a 2-2 draw against Farnham Town in the blistering sunshine at Dover Road on Saturday.
But the home side will be disappointed they did not celebrate success – given the number of chances they created.
With Moneys seemingly on course for victory – leading 2-1 with 20 minutes left – former Pompey striker Warren Hunt failed from the penalty spot after Josh Case had been sent sprawling in the box.
And as his effort rebounded back off an upright, play switched to the other end where Jay Foster went down under a tame challenge to earn Farnham a penalty that Jacob McDonald duly fired past keeper Cameron Scott.
The impressive Foster had given his side an early lead in the contest.
But after Conor Bailey had gone close to an equaliser with a shot that struck the woodwork, he aimed another long distance missile past keeper Richard Ozzy for an equaliser.
Moments before the referee brought an entertaining first half to a close, Bailey’s well-struck cross was met by Danny Horrell who headed Moneys into a deserved lead.
Late on Hunt had a spectacular volley ruled out for offside before both Stuart Green and Bobby Scott failed to beat Ozzy from point-blank range.
Fortunately for Moneyfields, Foster also wasted a late opportunity to win the match.
He too failed to find the target from close range and could only hold his head in horror as the ball flew yards over the crossbar.
But at the final whistle, Moneyfields manager Miles Rutherford praised the efforts of his side – particularly as it was the first of four pre-season matches and a lack of match fitness was obvious late on.
‘We didn’t get off to the best of starts but once we got ourselves acclimatised to the very hot conditions, the lads played some very acceptable football that went some way to giving us the lead,’ he said.
‘It’s a pity about Warren Hunt’s penalty.
‘That would have given us a 3-1 lead but credit to Farnham, they made the most of it to get an equaliser.
‘If I’m honest, if we had won 8-0 then I wouldn’t have learned as much as I did with a 2-2 draw.
‘The bottom line is we need to take more of our chances and hopefully we will once we get Steve Hutchings back on board after his return from Australia.’
MONEYFIELDS (squad): Hook, Hoare, Horrell, Sackman, Birmingham, Morgan, Case, Bailey, Green, Ripner, Hunt, Eastham, B Scott, Savage, Giddings, C Scott