Portsmouth close in on play-offs after late, late win at Gillingham
Pompey made it six wins on the spin with a dramatic stoppage-time win at Gillingham.
The Blues closed to within two points of the play-offs thanks to sub Michael Jacobs’ stoppage-time going in with the aid of a deflection off Jack Tucker.
It looked like Danny Cowley’s side would have to settle for a draw after a bright start turned into a disjointed attacking display.
But there was late drama which sent the 1,475 travelling fans wild on a freezing afternoon in Kent.
Pompey flew out of the blocks with Jamie Cumming making an outstanding early save, pushing an audacious Hirst lob on to the bar.
The lively Hirst then saw an 11th-minute drive saved with Mahlon Romeo’s follow-up tipped over.
Marcus Harness’ confidence is still flowing and he saw a 31st-minute snapshot from the edge of the box go narrowly wide.
Pompey had a let-off 10 minutes before the break as Connor Ogilvie was rolled by John Akinde, who was clean through, but hit a relatively tame effort which was easy for Gavin Bazunu.
Harness had a great chance to open the scoring two minutes after the restart as he danced through the home defence, but fired straight at Cumming.
Then Bazunu made an excellent and brave stop to deny Akinde at his feet, as the big man powered through. The home side claimed a penalty but the ref rightly played on.
Danny Lloyd blazed over after a mistake from Miguel Azeez with 18 minutes left, as Pompey struggled to find fluency - before the Gillingham man did likewise moments later.
A key touch from Robbie McKenzie denied sub Michael Jacobs a clear shot at goal from Morrell’s cross with time ticking down.
But then came the late drama as Jacobs found space in the box two minutes into stoppage time and fired home, with the ball deflecting off Tucker to snare the points.