Youngsters impress as Portsmouth ease to victory over Norwich under-21s
Pompey took a big step towards the second round in their Leasing.com Trophy defence with a comfortable 3-1 victory over Norwich under-21s.
Ellis Harrison fired a double and debutant Josh Flint was also on target in the Southern Section group B clash at Fratton Park.
There was also a superb performance from Eoin Teggart on his Blues bow, while youngsters Leon Maloney and Joe Hancott impressed.
Ryan Williams also came on off the bench for his second debut and first appearance since returning from Rotherham this summer.
The Blues started on the front foot, with Maloney picking out Teggart at the back stick but his header was cleared for a corner on five minutes.
From the resulting set-piece, Oli Hawkins nodded Andy Cannon’s delivery wide.
Two minutes later, it was Harrison’s turn to have a headed effort on goal but it was well saved by visiting keeper Archie Mair.
It was clear the breakthrough was coming – and it arrived in the 10th minute.
Teggart’s fine cross was nodded back across goal from Maloney and Harrison finished from close range.
To their credit, Norwich made a decent response, with Aidan Fitzpatrick firing two right-footed shots narrowly wide.
Yet Jackett’s troops ended the first half far stronger and doubled their lead a minute before the break.
Teggart was again at the heart of the move. He marauded down the left with venom and whipped in a ball for Harrison at the back stick.
The skipper headed back for Flint, whose first shot was kept out before he readjusted his feet and fired home via the post.The hosts started the second period just as they finished the opening 45 minutes, with Teggart fizzing in a cross that Maloney just couldn’t get his head to.
But the third did arrive in the 61st minute when Harrison bagged his second of the game.
Flint’s superb through ball set the summer signing from Ipswich away and he took one touch before finishing with aplomb.
However, Norwich reduced the arrears in the 67th minute.
Sean Raggett’s heavy touch inside the area gifted the ball to substitute Tom Scully and he drilled a shot home.
Harrison should have completed his hat-trick with 13 minutes remaining when he was left in acres of space inside the box but headed Cannon’s free-kick straight into the keeper’s arms.
And substitute John Marquis almost added a fourth when he was slipped in by Williams but had his shot saved by the legs of Mair.
In the final minute of stoppage-time, Marquis again was denied by Mair.
But it was a deserved success for Pompey and they return to League One action against Burton on Tuesday.
Pompey: Alex Bass, James Bolton, Oli Hawkins, Sean Raggett, Joe Hancott, Anton Walkes, Andy Cannon, Leon Maloney (Ryan Williams 71mins), Josh Flint (Ben Close 71mins), Eoin Teggart (John Marquis 77mins), Ellis Harrison.
Subs: Luke McGee, Christian Burgess, Paul Downing, Brett Pitman.
Noriwch: Archie Mair, Jordan Thomas, Ciaren Jones (Andrew Omobamidele 72mins), Akin Famewo, Rob Hizet, Aidan Fitzpatrick, Reece McAlear, Saul Milovanovic, Daniel Adshead, Isak Thorvaldsson (William Hondermarck 85mins), Gassan Ahadme (Tom Scully 61mins).
Subs not used: Billy Johnson, Connor Parsons.