Pompey Academy returned to winning ways today as Matt Mayes’ last-gasp wonder strike secured a hard-fought 2-1 victory over Swindon Town at Furze Lane.
The Blues’ under-18s entered the Youth Alliance League south west division fixture on the back of four straight defeats.
And when they found themselves a goal behind midway through the second-half, it looked like Mikey Harris’ under-18s side’s losing run was set to continue.
Sam Woodward, who had rattled the crossbar for the hosts in the first half, then struck the post for the luckless hosts.
The Blues, though, were not to be denied and levelled matters through Dan Smith, with the rangy midfielder climbing highest to loft home a header from Ousman Saidy’s cross with 12 minutes left on the clock.
And Pompey youngsters’ strength of character was evident for all to see when striker Mayes, inset, picked the ball up 30 yards from goal before unleashing a last-minute strike that soared into the top corner to claim all three points.
The win was made even more impressive by the fact Harris was deprived of selecting four regular starters with skipper Theo Widdrington, Jez Bedford and Kyle McDowell all sidelined through injury.
Top scorer Harvey Bradbury, meanwhile, was ruled out of Robins action through suspension.
POMPEY ACADEMY: Hall, Chandler (Casey 58), Saidy, Wakely, Hancott, Brooks, Read, Smith, Woodward (Lethbridge 86), Scutt, Mayes
– JEFF MARSHMAN