POMPEY 2 ALDERSHOT 2
Danny Hollands left it late to stop Pompey suffering an FA Cup giant-killing at the hands of non-league Aldershot.
The Blues had taken the lead through Jed Wallace’s penalty, only for Jordan Roberts to level the first round tie in stoppage-time.
Mark Molesley then gave the Conference Premier visitors hopes of an upset by firing the Shots ahead in the second half.
Hollands headed home the equaliser, but Pompey had to play the final few minutes with just 10 men after Paul Robinson was sent off.
Andy Awford made one enforced change from the side that beat Carlisle the previous week as Nigel Atangana came in for the injured James Dunne in midfield.
Before kick-off there was a perfectly-observed two minute’s silence in honour of Remembrance Sunday, while chairman Iain McInnes and both skippers laid a wreath in the centre circle.
It was the hosts who made the brighter start and Craig Westcarr teed-up Wallace on four minutes, only for the midfielder to hit a tame effort straight into the arms of former Pompey keeper Phil Smith.
Brett Williams then had the ball in the net at the other end, but had long since been flagged offside.
Westcarr was proving a handful for the Blues in the opening stages and forced Smith into making a good save.
But it was WALLACE who broke the deadlock from the spot on 16 minutes, confidently firing home after Glenn Wilson had been penalised for a trip on Westcarr.
The intensity of the match dipped as the half progressed, but Ricky Holmes forced Smith into action at his near post following a surging run into the box.
Aldershot had not looked particularly threatening, although a deep Roberts free-kick had to be scrambled to safety on 27 minutes.
Holmes was then tripped by Molesley 25 yards out and dusted himself down to fire in a free-kick that Smith did well to get his body behind.
It was the visitors who netted just before the break, however, when Dan Holman’s fine cross was converted at close range by Roberts.
Half Time: Pompey 1 Aldershot 1
Aldershot were then first to threaten after the interval, but Williams got the ball stuck under his feet and was eventually crowded out in the Blues box.
The visitors – backed by a large travelling contingent – had certainly grown in confidence and looked the more likely to add to the scoring.
Williams went close again just past the hour mark, drilling a low effort inches past the post after a corner had only been cleared to his feet.
Awford decided the time was right for a personnel and tactical switch on 66 minutes.
Teenage midfielder Ben Close got the nod to replace Westcarr, with Pompey switching to a 4-5-1 system.
But it failed to stop the Blues from falling behind a few moments later, as the newcomer gifted their opponents possession and Forbes sent in a low cross for Molesley to convert.
That forced Awford to throw on another forward, with Ryan Taylor replacing Atangana on 72 minutes.
It was still the Shots looking more dangerous going forward, though, and Roberts saw his free-kick fly agonisingly wide.
Miles Storey had Pompey’s first noteworthy attempt of the half on 72 minutes, but was unable to keep his acrobatic effort down and the ball flew over.
The striker had another go moments later and fired wide after latching onto an incisive pass from Holmes.
But HOLLANDS was more clinical on 81 minutes, drawing the Blues level with a header following good work from Holmes down the left.
There was still time for Robinson to earn his second yellow card – and a subsequent red – for a late challenge.
But it was the hosts who looked the more likely to grab the winner, although the sides will ultimately have to do it all over again in a replay at Aldershot.
Pompey: Jones; Wynter, Robinson, Devera, Shorey; Wallace, Atangana (Taylor 72), Hollands (c), Holmes (Chorley 84); Storey, Westcarr (Close 66)
Goals: Wallace 16 (pen), Hollands 81
Sent off: Robinson (two yellow cards)
Booked: Atangana, Holmes
Subs not used: Poke, Butler, Awford, Tarbuck
Aldershot: Smith; Gibbs, Phillips (Forbes 45+3), Wilson (c), Barker; Derry (Hatton 37), Oastler, Molesley, Roberts; Holman, Williams
Goals: Roberts 45+1, Molesley 68
Subs not used: Thomas, Oyeleke, Diallo, N’Guessan, Fitchett
Referee: Paul Tierney
Attendance: 11,095 (2,446 away fans)