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Match Reports

Pompey 1 QPR 1

Championship side battle back to ensure fourth round replay

26 January 2019

Ronan Curtis in action for Pompey against QPR
Photo: Joe Pepler/PinPep

Pompey will head to Loftus Road for an Emirates FA Cup fourth round replay following a 1-1 draw with QPR.

A full-blooded encounter was short on chances before the break, but exploded into life in the second half.

The hosts took the lead when Lee Brown’s cross was turned into his own net by the unfortunate Joel Lynch.

But Nahki Wells levelled for the Championship side, ensuring both teams would be in Monday evening’s draw for the fifth round.

Kenny Jackett made three changes from the side that were beaten at Oxford in the last league outing.

Brett Pitman returned to skipper the team, while Louis Dennis and Dion Donohue were also handed starts.

Jamal Lowe missed out through suspension and Andy Cannon was cup-tied, with David Wheeler having been recalled from his loan spell by the visitors.

A minute’s silence was held before kick-off to show support for missing Cardiff striker Emiliano Sala and pilot David Ibbotson.

The first half was played at a frenetic pace, with plenty of hustle and bustle, but few clear-cut openings at either end.

A long-range effort from Luke Freeman flew comfortably wide, while Craig MacGillivray comfortably claimed when a cross was flicked on by Darnell Furlong.

Ronan Curtis did well to win a corner at the other end, with the ball ricocheting off Jack Whatmough and flying past the post.

The centre-back was more fortunate with a deflection on 27 minutes, as Furlong’s delivery hit him and landed safely in MacGillivray’s arms.

QPR should have done better moments later when Lynch was left in space to meet Freeman’s free-kick, but could only divert the ball straight at the Blues keeper.

It was Pompey who finished the half on the attack, however, and Pitman did find the back of the net, only for the officials to spot an infringement.

Dennis then went close just before the break with a half-volley from the edge of the area that Joe Lumley did well to tip over the bar.

Half Time: Pompey 0 QPR 0

Pompey came flying out of the traps after the interval, although Curtis could not keep his shot down after a slip presented him with a chance.

Dennis then played a delightful pass over the Rangers defence for Pitman, whose first time effort just cleared the bar.

And when Gareth Evans whipped a cross in from the right, Pitman was not quite able to divert a glancing header on target.

Dennis had been relatively subdued before the break, but was proving a real threat after it and has low centre had to be turned behind by Toni Leistner.

Pompey were on top and they finally made the pressure count by taking the lead just past the hour mark.

Brown sent a teasing ball into the box from wide on the left and LYNCH could only slice the ball into his own net.

QPR looked to hit back and it took a vital headed clearance from Whatmough to ensure the Blues remained in the lead.

But the visitors were level on 74 minutes when a corner pinged around the box and Wells stabbed it into the roof of the net from close range.

A challenge from Curtis on Josh Scowen then led to a huge melee in the centre of the pitch and when peace was eventually restored the winger was booked, along with Brown and Lynch.

Rangers came close to turning the contest on its head soon after, but Freeman fired wide when he should at least have tested MacGillivray.

That proved to be the last decent opening for either side, meaning another game will be fitted into Pompey's busy schedule.

Pompey (4-2-3-1): MacGillivray; Walkes, Whatmough, Clarke, Brown; Naylor, Donohue (Close 80); Evans, Dennis, Curtis; Pitman (c)
Goals: Lynch 63 (og)
Booked: Whatmough, Curtis, Brown
Subs not used: Bass, Burgess, Haunstrup, Morris, May, Maloney

QPR (4-2-3-1): Lumley; Furlong, Leistner (c), Lynch, Bidwell; Scowen, Manning; Wszolek (Smith 71), Oteh (Osayi-Samuel 64), Freeman; Wells (Chair 90+1)
Goals: Wells 74
Booked: Manning, Lynch
Subs not used: Ingram, Kakay, Hall, Cousins

Referee: Gavin Ward

Attendance: 19,378 (2,881 away fans)


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