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· Third Place Winner, December 2011 Photo Contest
12,783 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Aiyegbeni Yakubu rescued a point for Portsmouth after 10-man Norwich had threatened an upset at Fratton Park.
Damien Francis put the Canaries in front despite the fifth-minute dismissal of Marc Edworthy, who was sent off for a foul on Diomansy Kamara.

But a controversial second-half penalty award gave Portsmouth the chance to grab a share of the spoils.

Yakubu eventually found the net after being ordered to take the spotkick three times by referee Phil Dowd.

Any chance of Norwich taking anything from the game looked to have been snuffed out as early as the fifth minute when last-man Edworthy was dismissed for a despairing lunge at Kamara as he broke free over the halfway line.

The dismissal forced the Canaries into a re-think, Mattias Jonson switching from a five-man midfield to right back.

But they took the reshuffle in their stride and went ahead four minutes later.

Arjan de Zeeuw, playing in his 100th Portsmouth game, could only head Darren Huckerby's cross straight into the path of Francis, who looped a shot into the top right corner.

Francis was playing his first game after fracturing his cheekbone in a training ground collision in late November.

But he continued to cause problems for Portsmouth and perhaps should have doubled Norwich's lead on 23 minutes.

The ball was fired across the face of goal but Francis, unmarked inside the six yard box at the far post, failed to control the header.

Huckerby thought he had made it 2-0 a few minutes later, but the goal was ruled out for a foul by Leon Mckenzie on Linvoy Primus.

The home side had plenty of possession but failed to create many clear cut chances despite their superiority.

Nigel Quashie and Patrik Berger launched several shots from long range while Robert Green did well to save Kamara's effort.

In fact it was Norwich, who looked more threatening, using the counter attack to good effect.

The frustration began to tell on Portsmouth, Andy Griffin, Yakubu and Matthew Taylor all picking up yellow cards.

Yakubu was lucky not to pick up a second yellow after throwing himself to the floor in an attempt to win a penalty just before half-time.

But he remained on the pitch and was at the heart of the most controversial incident of the match after the break.

As he challenged for the ball with Craig Fleming, referee Dowd ruled that the Norwich player had handled the ball and pointed to the spot.

Yakuba took the penalty, finding the net with a cheeky chip down the middle, but he was ordered to retake it not once but twice for encroachment by his team-mates.

His third kick was eventually ruled successful, Green diving to his right but the ball going to his left.

Norwich began to wither as their first-half efforts began to take their toll.

But they still had a chance to snatch victory in the final 10 minutes, when a weak shot took a wicked deflection and smacked off a post.

Portsmouth could have won it, too, Green racing off his line to block Yakubu and then saving from Gary O'Neil.


Portsmouth: Hislop, Griffin, De Zeeuw, Primus, Taylor (Mezague 81), Stone, Quashie, O'Neil, Berger (Faye 66), Yakubu, Kamara (Fuller 66).
Subs Not Used: Stefanovic, Ashdown.

Booked: Griffin, Yakubu, Taylor.

Goals: Yakubu 61 pen.

Norwich: Green, Edworthy, Fleming, Doherty, Charlton, Jonson, Mulryne (Brennan 61), Francis, Bentley, McKenzie (Jarvis 67), Huckerby (Drury 84).
Subs Not Used: Gallacher, Crow.

Sent Off: Edworthy (5).

Goals: Francis 9.

Att: 20,015.

Ref: P Dowd (Staffordshire).

· Third Place Winner, December 2011 Photo Contest
12,783 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I imagine Pompey were cussing themselves for not beating 10 man norwich, but fair play to the Canaries who actually took the lead after Edworthy was sent off.
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