Young Blues beaten 7-0 at Southampton
Pompey Academy exited the FA Youth Cup following a heavy defeat to local rivals Southampton at St Mary’s.
Sam Gallagher hit a second half hat-trick, while Jake Hasketh bagged a brace and there were also goals from Niall Mason and Mark Irvine.
Blues academy boss Andy Awford said: "They are one of the best academy sides in the country. We came here and unfortunately the players froze.
"Southampton grew in confidence after scoring their third early in the second half, but we looked dispirited and it just got worse from there."
It was the hosts who were first to threaten after a slow opening, but Josh Sims could only screw his shot wide from close range.
Gallagher then headed over moments later as Southampton began to exert some pressure.
Pompey – who were being watched by new first team boss Richie Barker – were suddenly presented with a chance of their own on 11 minutes, but Harry Isted was quickly off his line to save at the feet of Lewis Horsburgh.
The home side quickly broke up the other end of the pitch where skipper Tom Leggett saw his shot comfortably saved.
It was end-to-end stuff now and the Blues retaliated with an effort from Ben Close that flew over the crossbar.
But it was Southampton who opened the scoring after 27 minutes when Gallagher came out on top of a tussle with Jack Whatmough and his cross was diverted home by Hesketh.
Alex Bass then had to make two super saves in quick succession to deny first Sims and then Gallagher’s follow-up.
Pompey’s keeper then made another fine stop, this time tipping Sims’ shot over the crossbar.
But the visitors could not hold out for half-time and though the ball was cleared off the line from the resulting corner, Mason was hand to fire home.
Half Time: Southampton 2 Pompey 0
The Blues fell further behind early in the second half after Harry Medway had conceded a free-kick on the edge of the box.
Hesketh’s effort was kept out by Bass, but the keeper was helpless as Gallagher tucked away the rebound.
The striker thought he had added another moments later after sweeping in Matt Targett’s cross, but his celebrations were cut short by the linesman’s flag.
Bass then made another couple of impressive stops, pushing away Sims’ shot and then blocking Gallagher’s rebound.
But Southampton did increase their advantage on 61 minutes courtesy of an impressive goal from Hesketh, who dinked the ball over Whatmough and calmly slotted home.
Gallagher then headed in the hosts’ fifth of the evening before completing his hat-trick in fortunate fashion.
And substitute Mark Irvine added a seventh on 85 minutes to complete a miserable evening for Pompey.
Southampton: Isted; Leggett (c), Clinton, Debayo, Targett; Mason, Flannigan; Sims (Higgins 77), Hesketh (Nehemie 77), Barnes (Irvine 73); Gallagher
Goals: Hesketh 27, 61, Mason 44, Gallagher 51, 65, 84, Irvine 85
Subs not used: White, Little
Pompey: Bass; Haunstrup, Field, Whatmough (c), Medway; Close, Granger (Nilsen 75); Chaplin (Gill 55), Tarbuck, Kim (Rwakarambwe 80); Horsburgh
Subs not used: Raine, Smart
Referee: Adrian Tranter
Attendance: 3,814 (616 Pompey fans)
Photo: Barry Zee