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Academy Win 11-Goal Thriller

Young Blues battle from behind to beat Exeter 6-5

15 September 2019

Harrison Brook

Pompey Academy continued their fine start to the season by winning an 11-goal thriller against Exeter at Copnor Road.

But they had to fight from 2-0 and 3-1 down before eventually securing a 6-5 win that maintains their five-point advantage at the top of the Youth Alliance League.

Lewis Wilson’s brace saw the visitors race into the lead and after Alfie Stanley had reduced the Blues’ deficit from the penalty spot, Ben Chrisene netted a third for the Grecians.

But Charlie Bell turned and fired home a fierce shot, while an own-goal meant Pompey were back on level terms at the break.

They went ahead for the first time following the restart, with Harrison Brook (pictured) rifling the ball home, only for Jack Stafford to reply for Exeter.

Brook then found the top corner to double his personal tally and again the visitors hit back, this time through Cheick Diabate.

But Stanley made sure of the three points by racing on to a pass, rounding the keeper and slotting home from a tight angle.

Academy manager Mark Kelly said: “It was certainly an interesting game! We started extremely slowly and left too many gaps for our opponents to exploit.

"If you don’t start games properly then you can quickly find yourself in a lot of trouble."

Mark Kelly

“We didn’t look after the ball properly and our movement wasn’t quick enough, which made life hard for our back three and the keeper.

“It continued throughout the first half, although we began to play some form of football after falling behind.

“We were far too expansive out of possession, though, and were causing our own problems, so there were some raised voices at the break. We needed to be more dynamic.

“It was still too open for my liking during the second half, but we retained the ball better, used our wing-backs effectively and stretched the game for Exeter.

“We scored six goals and you expect to win when that happens, so we can give the boys a pat on the back for the result and our resilience after going behind.

“But if you don’t start games properly then you can quickly find yourself in a lot of trouble, so the overall performances gives us plenty to work on.”

Pompey: Pitman; Kavanagh, Robb, Kelly; Brook, Rew, Storey, Bell, Lee (Bridgman 81); Stanley, Anderson (Jewitt-White 62)
Subs not used: Dawson, Hughes

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