Walters is a wonder as US Portsmouth record best win in club’s Wessex League Premier history

Jimmy Walters fired a hat-trick as US Portsmouth celebrated their best ever win in the Wessex League Premier Division.
Fraser Quirke hailed US Portsmouth's win over AFC Stoneham as the best in the club's Wessex Premier historyFraser Quirke hailed US Portsmouth's win over AFC Stoneham as the best in the club's Wessex Premier history
Fraser Quirke hailed US Portsmouth's win over AFC Stoneham as the best in the club's Wessex Premier history

The former Gosport Borough youngster’s treble gave youthful UPS a 3-2 Victory Stadium success over AFC Stoneham.

The Purples had arrived on Portsea Island boasting a 100 per cent seasonal league record, while the previous weekend had played Yeovil Town in front of over 2,000 at Huish Park in an FA Cup tie.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

This time, only 34 were at HMS Temeraire to see Walters, one of six teenagers in the home starting XI, take centre stage in the most surprising result of the Wessex Premier season so far.

Six of the Purples side that started in the 7-1 loss to National League South high-fliers Yeovil started against US, whose only previous league win this term was via a stoppage-time penalty at Petersfield in their early August curtain-raiser. Top scorer Duarte Martins, though, was a high profile absentee for the visitors.

Walters, playing on the right of a front three, put US into a half-time lead.

He grabbed a second in the 81st minute before Stoneham replied almost straight away through Scott Hills.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Walters completed his treble on 87 minutes with Hills netting a second consolation in the second of 10 stoppage time minutes.

The win ended a run of five successive wins for the Purples against USP - four in the Wessex Premier and a 6-1 FA Vase romp last season.

“It was a brilliant win,” saluted USP boss Fraser Quirke. “I was really apprehensive beforehand, I thought we’d catch the backlash (of the FA Cup loss).

“Without a shadow of a doubt it is the club’s best Wessex Premier win.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“It wasn’t a ‘cor, we were lucky’ win either, we deserved it. We worked hard to absorb pressure and we scored three good counter-attacking goals. Jimmy showed speed, aggression and quality.

“Stoneham are a very good side, I’d be amazed if they’re not in the top two or three at the end of the season. But we got what we deserved.”

Quirke fielded two 18-year-old central defenders in Callum Mann and Nathan Ewins, the latter a member of Winchester City’s U23s.

Adetola Adeniran, just 17, started at right back with Chichester University student Daniel Dywer operating at left-back.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Central midfielder Will Ayre completed USP’s contingent of teens, in a starting XI were Bradey Norton was the only thirty something and manager’s son Cam Quirke the second oldest at 25.

Fraser Quirke said: “The beauty of young players is they are very coachable, they will almost always turn up for training. They also don’t know when they’re beaten.”

Fraser Quirke now has a selection headache for Tuesday’s Wessex visit to Fareham Town.

Tom Rolls, dual registered from Gosport Borough, Luke Richards, Phil Archbold and Tommy Andrews - none of whom featured against Stoneham - are all back in contention for the trip to Cams Alders.