The FA Youth Cup sponsored by E.ON 2008/09 Fourth Round
Portsmouth - Manchester City
Wednesday January 14, 2009, 7.00pm
Fratton Park, Portsmouth - Att: ...
O'Brien, Gregory (Castles 78), Blackman, Pack, Woodford, Mantyla, Hurst, Mahoto, Cowan-Hall (Ciftci 76), Kilbey, Nlundulu (Gazet Du Chattelier 67).
unused subs: Hughes, Smith (GK).
Clegg, Trippier, Cunningham, Wabara, Boyata, Tutte, Benali, Ibrahim, Mak, Nimely (Redshaw 90), Chantler.
unused subs: Guidetti, E. Johansen (GK), Tse, Elabdellaoui.
Goals: 0-1 Boyata 43
Portsmouth: Mahoto 67, Mantyla 78, Gazet Du Chattelier 84
Referee: W Atkin
City came into the game unchanged from the side that swept Swansea aside 3-0 in the third round. Hosts Portsmouth meanwhile edged their home tie with Gillingham by two goals to one.
There will be extra time and penalties if the scores remain level on the night, with the reward for the winners a home tie against either Queens Park Rangers or Newcastle United, who meet tomorrow night at Loftus Road.
On a Fratton Park pitch, looking decidedly better than it did on Saturday, City’s FA Youth Cup defence got underway with the young Blues sporting the blaze orange away kit.
Early on it was the home side who served their intentions with a couple of long balls over the top for the pacey Paris Cowan-Hall to latch on to. On the second occasion, just five minutes in, City keeper Joe Clegg produced a great save to deny the striker as he dived at his feet.
City though sprang into life after 10 minutes following a swift exchange between frontmen Robbie Mak and Alex Nimely. Mak raced away from the halfway line but the Slovakian striker could only place his shot wide of the Pompey goal.
On 18 minutes it was Pompey on the back foot again, this time clearing off the line, as Benali’s header back across goal from a Nimely cross threatened to drop in.
Just on the half hour mark Chris Chantler was twice denied with efforts off the line by the Pompey following a flap by O’Brien in goal with City on top.
And on 43 minutes City superiority came to the fore as they deservedly took the lead. Captain Kieran Trippier’s deep free-kick from just inside the Pompey half on the right hand side was flicked on by Dedryck Boyata from six-yards out but no one could stop it bouncing in at the far post.
HALF TIME: Portsmouth 0-1 City
After a quiet opening to the second half City almost made it 2-0 on the hour as Mak twisted and turned two Pompey defenders before O’Brien pulled off a fine save to stop the striker’s shot that looked destined for the top corner.
On 67 minutes the hosts should have been down to 10-men as Gautier Mahoto took a dislike to a strong tackle by Andrew Tutte. Mahoto picked himself up before going head-to-head with the Liverpudlian midfielder and putting his hand in his face...the referee though only produced a yellow card for the misdemeanour.
Trippier then curled a dangerous looking free-kick just over the bar as the Blues chased a second and surely vital goal to quell any late Pompey resistance.
As time ticked on City almost made a grave error on 84 minutes as Nimely gave the ball away to Mahoto. The midfielder strode on and hit a powerful shot from distance, which needed Clegg to keep out at full stretch, only to then get clattered in the follow-up by Gazet Du Chattelier who was subsequently booked for the challenge.
Towards the end City chased a second but it mattered not in the end and they young Blues booked their place in the fifth round against their QPR or Newcastle.
FULL TIME: Portsmouth 0-1 City