AFC Wimbledon 1-2 Portsmouth

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Pompey kept up their outstanding away form with a 2-1 win at AFC Wimbledon.

Tom Naylor’s first Blues goal and Gareth Evans’ fourth effort of the season made it seven wins and a draw from eight fixtures on the road this term.

Tom Naylor put Pompey ahead in the 23rd minute Picture: Joe Pepler

Tom Naylor put Pompey ahead in the 23rd minute Picture: Joe Pepler

Kenny Jackett’s side should have put the game to bed before Sons sub James Hanson pulled a goal back with a superb 25-yard effort in the 63rd minute.

That made for a nervy finale for the visitors and the 763 fans who travelled up the A3 for the shortest league trip of the season.

But they were smiling on the final whistle, along with owner Michael Eisner who flew in for the game, as their team stayed three points clear at the top of the table.

The first half proved a breathless encounter, with a host of chances stacked up by the visitors.

Naylor’s fourth-minute header set the tone for Pompey’s attacking display, as keeper Joe McDonnell saved with his feet from Dion Donohue’s corner.

Evans had a great chance to open the scoring six minutes later from a peach of a lofted pass forward from Nathan Thompson, but the vice-captain saw McDonnell equal to his effort.

The opener came in the 24th minute as Naylor met Donohue’s corner and this time saw his header cross the line.

Seven minutes later and it was 2-0 as Lee Brown crossed from left and Oli Hawkins couldn’t apply the finish, but there was Evans to fire home from a tight angle.

Hawkins could’ve put the game out of sight in the 37th minute, but he allowed Deji Oshilaja to get a foot in as he dallied after Jamal Lowe had led the Wimbledon defence a merry dance.

The Dons made a triple change at the break which spoke volumes of their manager’s view of the first half.

Sub James Hanson had a great chance to pull one back in the 56th minute but put his header wide from Jake Jervis’ cross.

Four minutes later Matt Clarke’s header was cleared off the line by Jervis from Donohue’s corner.

Wimbledon were back in it in the 63rd minute as Evans shanked his clearance and was ruthlessly punished as Hanson blitzed home a 25-yard howitzer.

That was the cue for the Dons to turn up the pressure on the visitors, who should have been out of sight.

Pompey got deeper and deeper in the effort to hold out for the victory as royal blue nerves became shredded.

But their rearguard action held firm to have the Blues faithful celebrating on the final whistle.