Faultless start over for Cowleys as Burton Albion halt Portsmouth play-off charge
Danny Cowley’s perfect start as Pomey boss came to an end today with a 2-1 loss to Burton Albion.
A goal in each half did the damage before Charlie Daniel’s late consolation at Fratton Park, as the Blues’ four-game winning run under the new management team was halted.
Pompey had 77 per cent possession against the Brewers but didn’t create any clear openings in the first 45 minutes.
Then Ronan Curtis and Ben Close failed to make the most of presentable chances after the break before Daniels headed home to set up a grandstand finale, as the Blues dropped to fifth in the table.
Pompey spent the first half on the front foot but found Burton a tough nut to crack.Marcus Harness’ shot was deflected just past the post after six minutes, before Andy Cannon’s lovely cross could be touched home by Ronan Curtis 14 minutes later.
Tom Naylor’s first-time shot from Curtis’ knockdown wasn’t too far post four minutes before the break, before the Blues were undone by sucker punch in stoppage time.
A long throw caused uncertainty in the box and was eventually scrambled in by hulking striker Mike Fondop from close range.
Pompey were given a mountain to climb two minutes after the restart after Raggett conceded a free-kick which was smashed home by Powell from 25 yards, after being teed up by Clare.
Curtis’ shot on the turn was blocked mid-way through the half as Cowley’s side tried to find a way back into the game.
And then the Irishman missed a very presentable chance with 17 minutes to go as he blazed his volley over with time and space in the box.
Close missed another great chance with five minutes left when he miscued with space 10 yards out, but then sub Charlie Daniels nodded home with two minutes remaining.
That set it up for a grandstand finale but Pompey couldn’t find the leveller through five minutes of stoppage time as Nicolaisen headed wide at the death.