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09 November 2021 Venue Fratton Park Attendance

Kick off 19:45 (UK)

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Match Previews

Match Preview: Pompey v Crystal Palace U21

All you need to know about Papa John's Trophy contest

9 November 2021

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Pompey v Crystal Palace U21

Pompey will end their Papa John’s Trophy Southern Group B campaign by hosting Crystal Palace’s under-21 side this evening (7.45pm kick-off).

With defeats to AFC Wimbledon and Sutton in their opening two fixtures, chances of progression to the knockout stages are slim.

It is not totally out of the question, although claiming three points against the Eagles is the absolute minimum requirement.

The Dons would also need to be beaten at Sutton, while there also has to be a goal difference swing of at least four.

Tonight’s visitors also know that victory would not necessarily guarantee a spot in the last 32 of the competition, although a single point could still be enough.

Paddy McCarthy’s young team lost 3-0 to Sutton in their opening fixture, but responded with a 2-0 success at Plough Lane.

They sit seventh in the top tier of Premier League 2, battling from behind to beat Chelsea in their last outing.

If the game finishes level after 90 minutes, both sides will collect a point. A penalty shoot-out would then be held to decide who earns a bonus point.

TEAM NEWS
Danny Cowley has revealed there will be a mixture of youth and experience on display, with several academy players likely to feature in the matchday squad.

Ellis Harrison (ankle), Jayden Reid (knee), Clark Robertson (hip) and Ryan Tunnicliffe (hamstring) are all sidelined.

Paul Downing and Liam Vincent have both returned to full training, but this evening’s match comes too soon for the duo.

VIEW FROM THE DRESSING ROOM
Read the thoughts of Danny Cowley and Michael Jacobs ahead of the game.

HEAD TO HEAD*
Overall
Pompey: 16 wins
Crystal Palace: 22 wins
22 draws

At Fratton Park
Pompey: 9 wins
Crystal Palace: 5 wins
16 draws

*Matches against Crystal Palace's first team

TICKETS
Pompey fans can secure a seat online here or by visiting the Anson Road ticket office.

They can also be purchased this evening from the ticket booth behind the Fratton End, while all parking must be pre-booked here.

Fratton Park is now a cashless stadium, with contactless payments will be required in all food kiosks and hospitality areas, as well as for the purchase of tickets.

Portsmouth Football Club respectfully ask all supporters to adhere to the Code of Conduct to ensure an enjoyable and safe matchday experience for all.

The Victory Bar will be open for home fans from 5pm this evening.

OFFICIALS
Referee: Will Finnie
Assistants: Kevin Howick and Adrian Tranter
Fourth Official: James Vallance

MATCH COVERAGE
Supporters at home and abroad can watch the contest live (please note coverage will be provided by a single camera) by purchasing an iFollow match pass and visiting the match centre.

Domestic iFollow subscribers can also enjoy audio commentary from Andrew Moon and Guy Whittingham, but will need to purchase a match pass if they want to watch the game.

Click here for more information about using iFollow on a matchday and click here for information on downloading the app, so you can access content on your mobile device.

We will have updates throughout the game on Twitter and the match centre. You can also see behind-the-scenes content on our Instagram story.

There will be post-match reaction on the website and our official YouTube channel, with highlights to follow on Wednesday.

Local listeners can hear commentary by tuning in to either Express FM or BBC Radio Solent.

BETTING
Crystal Palace are the 29/20 favourites with VBET to secure all three points, while Pompey can be backed at 31/20.

Click here to find a comprehensive list of odds for this evening's game. 18+. Please gamble responsibly.

ALSO IN PAPA JOHN’S TROPHY
Games kick-off at 7pm unless stated

Crawley v Southampton U21
Crewe v Wolves U21
Leyton Orient v Charlton
Morecambe v Carlisle
Port Vale v Liverpool U21
Scunthorpe v Doncaster
Sheffield Wednesday v Harrogate
Stevenage v Cambridge
Sunderland v Bradford
Swindon v Newport
Tranmere v Oldham
Wycombe v Burton
Barrow v Leicester U21 (7.45pm)
Fleetwood v Accrington (7.45pm)
Ipswich v Colchester (7.45pm)
Mansfield v Newcastle U21 (7.45pm)
Sutton v AFC Wimbledon (7.45pm)

EFL TROPHY MAGIC MOMENT

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Match Reports

Pompey 3 Crystal Palace U21 0

Blues qualify for Papa John’s Trophy second round

9 November 2021

Miguel Azeez scores for Pompey against Crystal Palace U21s in the Papa John
Photo: Robin Jones

Pompey snuck into the second round of the Papa John’s Trophy after comfortably beating Crystal Palace’s under-21 side at Fratton Park.

Miguel Azeez, Gassan Ahadme and George Hirst all opened their accounts for the club – the latter in stoppage-time – in a performance that was full of attacking verve.

And with AFC Wimbledon narrowly beaten at Sutton, it opened the door for the Blues to overhaul the former side on goals scored to finish second in the standings.

Danny Cowley made eight changes from the side that beat Harrow to progress in the FA Cup at the weekend.

Sean Raggett was handed the captain’s armband, while Connor Ogilvie and Azeez also remained in the line-up.

Academy teenagers Adam Payce and Harvey Hughes were both handed senior debuts, while several more members of the under-18 side filled the bench.

Alex Bass returned between the sticks, with Kieron Freeman, Louis Thompson, Michael Jacobs, Gassan and George Hirst also started.

The young Eagles were first to threaten when John-Kymani Gordon wriggled his way into space and saw a shot deflected against the outside of the post.

But the Blues soon began to dominate proceedings and had a great chance to break the deadlock on 14 minutes.

Hughes’ clearance was flicked on by Gassan and Hirst raced away, taking a great touch to beat his man, but then getting the shot with the outside of his boot all wrong.

It then almost became a dream debut for Hughes, with the left-back hitting a low drive that Owen Goodman turned around the post.

The chances continued to come and Hirst was so close to opening his Pompey account after Gassan’s initial effort had been blocked.

He hit a low shot that appeared destined for the net, but Goodman got down to his right to make a superb save.

And the opening goal did finally arrive on 32 minutes, as Hirst and Gassan combined to find AZEEZ, with the Arsenal loanee calmly finding the net.

The lead was almost doubled soon after, with Thompson surging forward and laying the ball off for Jacobs, with the winger’s effort smothered by Goodman.

But Palace thought they had levelled after stealing possession and working the ball through to Rob Street.

The striker neatly curled his shot into the net and celebrated in front of the Fratton End, only to be cut short by an offside flag.

And the hosts had the final say of the first half, as Jacobs hit a fine shot that bent agonisingly past the upright.

Half Time: Pompey 1 Crystal Palace U21 0

Cowley made a change at the break, with academy midfielder Harry Jewitt-White replacing Thompson in the centre of the park.

Hirst’s hunt for a goal took him close again, as the striker showed neat footwork after collecting a Jacobs pass and sent a low shot inches past the post.

And the advantage was doubled on 54 minutes, when a fine right-sided cross from Freeman was smartly headed home by GASSAN.

Pompey continued to push forward in search of more goals and Hirst had an effort blocked, with the Eagles forced into some desperate defending.

The striker just did not have luck on his side and Goodman just about managed to scoop his header – from a Jacobs corner – off the line.

With AFC Wimbledon narrowly losing at Sutton, the Blues still required one more goal to reach the knockout stages.

They had to be alert at the other end, although Bass was not overly troubled by a low drive from David Omilabu.

Palace then went closer to getting on the scoresheet, as a Malachi Boateng thunderbolt cannoned against the post.

Pompey were still hunting for a goal of their own, though, and Hirst’s ambitious 35-yard strike flew straight at Goodman following a fine pass from Jewitt-White.

Another youngster was then introduced from the bench for the closing stages, with Payce making way for Alfie Bridgman.

Hirst went close again in stoppage-time, but his shot took a wicked deflection and sneaked just past the post.

But he did finally get the goal his overall performance deserved from the resulting corner that was taken by Azeez.

His delivery was helped on by Gassan and HIRST was able to bundle the ball home and celebrate in front of the Fratton End.

There was then a wait to see if Sutton would hold onto their lead over AFC Wimbledon before Pompey’s place in the knockout stages was confirmed.

Pompey (4-2-3-1): Bass; Freeman, Raggett (c), Ogilvie, Hughes; Thompson (Jewitt-White 46), Azeez; Payce (Bridgman 88), Gassan (Kaba 90+5), Jacobs; Hirst
Goals: Azeez 32, Gassan 54, Hirst 90+2
Subs not used: Steward, Setters, Howell, Gifford

Crystal Palace U21 (4-1-4-1): Goodman; D.Boateng, Quick, Rich-Baghuelou, Watson (Imray 76); M.Boateng (c); Omilabu, Kirby (Mooney 76), Roles (Taylor 57), Gordon; Street
Subs not used: Izquierdo, Thiselton, Sheridan, Cadogan

Referee: Will Finnie

Attendance: 1,660 (171 away fans)

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