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Sunk At Pompey

Double Strike

By T/T
March 20 2010

Two goals in the last three minutes saw Portsmouth come from behind to win 3-2 and ruin Iain Dowie's first game as Hull City boss.

Forgotten striker Caleb Folan scored twice on his recall to the side to put the Tigers 2-1 up with just moments remaining.

But first the outstanding Jamie O'Hara rifled in a left-footed free-kick with two minutes of normal time to go.

Then the evergreen Kanu, on as a second-half substitute, was on hand to tap home from close range after a great run and cutback by Nadir Belhadj.

The win does little to ease Pompey's plight but could deal a fatal blow to Hull's survival hopes as they remain three points from safety with time running out.

"Going down, going down," chanted the Pompey fans, acknowledging their own position, but also taunting the visiting support after a demoralising defeat.

Much of the focus before the game was on whether Avram Grant would significantly weaken his Pompey team after the Premier League's deduction made it virtually impossible for them to stay in the top flight.

With an FA Cup semi-final on the horizon, Grant had considered making wholesale changes. In the end he drafted five players in from the team that lost to Liverpool last Monday, although it could hardly be labelled weak - one of the changes was England goalkeeper David James coming in and another scored their equaliser.

Hull were looking for a reaction after Phil Brown's dismissal earlier in the week and Dowie's appointment, with his task appearing more difficult after this result.

There were signs, as early as the fourth minute, that Dowie's presence in the dug-out may earn them a change of fortune away from home.


Kevin Kilbane, one of three changes Dowie made, floated a cross from the left to the back post and Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink looped a header against the upright, with Folan not quick enough with his reactions to tap home the rebound.

Hull opened the scoring in the 27th minute with a goal that came after Jimmy Bullard had two long-range efforts, the second of which deflected off Aaron Mokoena for a corner.

Bullard's corner was cleared by Frederic Piquionne to the edge of the area where Craig Fagan's shot, helped by Folan's deflection, wrongfooted James. It was credited to Folan, his first goal since Hull's first game of last season.

Pompey's equaliser came eight minutes from the break, also from a corner. From O'Hara's delivery, Piquionne met the ball again and this time returned it to the danger zone, where Tommy Smith prodded home.

Hull may have felt unfortunate to be level at the break after threatening James' goal and inducing mistakes from the 39-year-old goalkeeper.

When he rushed out to take the ball off Folan, James slid out of his area and earned a yellow card, then the striker intercepted a backpass but was forced too wide to inflict damage.

Dean Marney also had an effort fly just wide, while Fagan went over the crossbar in the 50th minute after a decent run.

Folan's second goal came after referee Phil Dowd touched the ball in the build-up, with Richard Garcia slipping his team-mate through to slot home.

O'Hara was furious with Dowd but responded by curling a delicious free-kick into the top corner with three minutes remaining. There was still another twist, with Belhadj racing down the left and crossing for Kanu to slot home to deal the killer blow.

Well i would suggest Pompey and Burnley are down, its just a case of picking up points and trying to get above the likes of Wolves and maybe West Ham. We are not down yet and that was much better, prehaps i was wrong about Dowie but it was only Pompey! We shall see against the better teams.


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20/03/2010 18:22
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