Butler grabs late leveller
Dan Butler scored from a late free-kick as Pompey Reserves preserved their unbeaten start to the season with a 2-2 draw at Bournemouth in the Final Third Development League.
The Blues had gone ahead through Ben Close, but the Cherries netted either side of the interval to turn the match on its head
Pompey started brightly and won a couple of early corners, the second of which resulted in Snorre Nilsen heading narrowly over.
The hosts’ first opening arrived on 12 minutes, but Ben Whitfield could only manage to clear the crossbar after meeting Harrison Gilkes’ cross.
Nick Awford then fed Bradley Tarbuck at the other end and the striker sent a dangerous low ball into the box that none of his team-mates were able to get on the end of.
He had a chance of his own midway through the first half, beating Cherries keeper Jordan Holmes before seeing his shot hacked clear by a well-placed defender.
Bournemouth did enjoy a spell of pressure, with Whitfield and Matt Worthington both creating openings.
But it was the Blues who deservedly broke the deadlock on 32 minutes when some neat interplay saw CLOSE threaded through and the teenager finished with aplomb.
Jack Maloney and Andy Barcham then both had chances to double the advantage in quick succession.
The Cherries were level just before the break, however, with Whitfield bundling home after Michael Poke had parried Joe Quigley’s shot.
But there was still time for Pompey to create one last opportunity, with Tarbuck firing narrowly over after Awford had beaten Holmes to the ball.
Half Time: Bournemouth 1 Pompey 1
Whitfield sent a shot flying past the post as Bournemouth began the second half on the front foot.
At the other end, Jack Whatmough was left all alone inside the box, but sent his header well off target.
Barcham then pounced on a poor ball by Jake McCarthy, only to send his shot cannoning against the Cherries defender.
Whatmough was soon handed another chance but, although closer this time, headed inches wide after meeting Close’s corner.
Poke did well to turn behind Harry Cornick’s shot on the hour mark, but the hosts did forge ahead soon after when Aly Coulibaly collected Whitfield’s pass and slotted into the net.
The impressive Close came close to levelling on 75 minutes, with his free-kick drawing an impressive save from Holmes.
But the Blues did equalise late on when they won a free-kick on the edge of the box and BUTLER stepped up to fire home an unstoppable free-kick.
Bournemouth substitute Sam Surridge then cleared the crossbar in the closing seconds as the visitors held on for a deserved share of the spoils.
Bournemouth: Holmes; Muleba, Butcher, McCarthy, Buckley; Cornick (Harfield 85), Coulibaly (Walsh 62), Worthington, Gilkes; Whitfield, Quigley (Surridge 72)
Subs not used: O’Flaherty, Lee
Pompey: Poke; Wynter, Whatmough (Granger 60), Nilsen (Gill 72), Butler; Awford, Close, Atangana (Rwakarambwe 85); Maloney, Barcham; Tarbuck
Sub not used: Bass
Referee: Lee Rutter