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RESERVES REACH LAST FOUR OF PREMIER LEAGUE CUP

3 April 2017

Kabamba and Lowe on target against Colchester

Pompey Reserves booked their place in the semi-finals of the Premier League Cup with a 2-0 victory over Colchester.

The sides were level at the break after Liam O'Brien saved a penalty from Tariq Issa in the Westleigh Park contest.

But Nicke Kabamba and Jamal Lowe both scored in the second half, as the Blues continued their incredible run in the competition.

Christian Oxlade-Chamberlain had an early attempt for the hosts that was comfortably dealt with by Dillon Barnes.

But the Colchester keeper was tested by a ferocious Conor Chaplin drive soon after and made a fine save.

It was Pompey applying all of the early pressure and another effort from Chaplin was once again kept out.

United started to advance up the other end of the pitch as the half progressed, however, and O’Brien had to be alert to deny Eoin McKeown from out wide.

But the Blues were still looking dangerous and Barnes was again called into action when Kabamba tried to convert Chaplin’s cross.

Referee David Rock then received criticism from the home support for awarding a free-kick in Colchester’s favour, despite Kabamba appearing to be wrestled to the ground.

And the official soon spotted a foul on Issa during a penalty box melee and immediately pointed to the spot.

Issa picked himself up to take it, but O’Brien dived to his left to make a fine save and ensure the sides went in level at the break.

Half Time: Pompey 0 Colchester 0

There was a sluggish start to the second half, but the hosts ensured that the game sparked into life on 52 minutes.

Oxlade-Chamberlain nodded the ball on and KABAMBA was onto it in a flash before sending a clinical finish past Barnes.

Colchester went in search of an immediate equaliser and had the Blues pinned back into their own half, without managing to create any clear-cut opportunities.

Rock, meanwhile, continued to provoke the ire of a partisan Westleigh Park crowd, failing to act when Chaplin was clearly fouled.

But it mattered not, as Pompey doubled their advantage on 85 minutes, courtesy of an impressive solo goal.

Substitute LOWE won possession in the centre of the pitch, advanced down the left, cut inside and rocketed a shot home from an acute angle to settle the contest.

The lead was almost even more convincing, as skipper Ben Close forced a fine save from Barnes at the death.

Pompey: O’Brien; Talbot, T.Davies, Whatmough, Haunstrup; May, Close (c); Oxlade-Chamberlain (C.Davies 64), Chaplin (Main 74), Bedford (Lowe 64); Kabamba
Subs not used: Bass, Smith

Colchester: Barnes; Vincent-Young (Brown 46), Peter (c), Kensdale, Kinsella; Wright, Edge; Howard, Issa, Dunne (Jones 81); McKeown
Subs not used: Wilson, Keys

Referee: David Rock

Attendance: 598

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