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Match Reports

Pompey 0 Sheffield Wednesday 0

Luongo sent off for the visitors at Fratton Park

7 December 2021

Miguel Azeez in action for Pompey against Sheffield Wednesday at Fratton Park
Photo: Jason Brown

Pompey and Sheffield Wednesday played out an entertaining goalless draw after heavy rain threatened to halt the League One contest before it had got started.

The Fratton Park surface passed a pitch inspection just over an hour before kick-off and played host to a contest full of chances.

It took a series of fine saves from Bailey Peacock-Farrell to deny the Blues all three points, while Massimo Luongo’s red card saw the visitors finish with just 10 men.

Danny Cowley made two changes from the side that exited the FA Cup to Harrogate Town at the weekend.

George Hirst – who had recovered from a sickness bug – and Ronan Curtis both returned, with Ellis Harrison and Michael Jacobs making way.

With injuries and illness affecting the squad, there were three members of the academy squad named among the substitutes.

The first half was played at a fast tempo, with both sides carving out some decent opportunities to break the deadlock.

Curtis was unable to keep his shot down after being teed-up by Hirst, who was then denied a penalty after appearing to be tripped in the box by Liam Palmer.

Peacock-Farrell also made a mess of dealing with a Shaun Williams corner and was relieved to see the ball land safe.

The keeper came to the Owls’ rescue soon after, though, sticking out a boot to thwart Hirst, who had received a fine threaded pass from Marcus Harness.

The visitors grew stronger as the half progressed and a wickedly bending strike from Fisayo Dele-Bashiru flew narrowly over.

Bazunu then used his outstretched leg to deal with Lee Gregory’s pass into the mixer after initially struggling to connect with Barry Bannan’s corner.

And a Bannan free-kick was soon flicked on by Gregory, with the ball hitting Palmer and ricocheting past the post.

But it was the Blues who almost broke the deadlock just before the break, as Peacock-Farrell did brilliantly to stop a low Curtis effort from finding the bottom corner.

Half Time: Pompey 0 Sheffield Wednesday 0

The chances kept coming once the action restarted, although Palmer could head only head a Bannan free-kick down into the turf and see the ball bounce over.

Hirst then flicked on a Reeco Hackett delivery from the left, but it was just behind Harness, who was unable to make a connection.

Hackett then had a go himself and hit an absolute rocket from 20 yards that Peacock-Farrell just about managed to tip over.

And the Northern Ireland international stopper was at it again with an even better save on 66 minutes.

Harness hit a poor corner, but the ball landed back at his feet and a superb delivery was met by a firm Curtis header that was clawed out by Peacock-Farrell.

The visitors were dealt a huge blow when they were reduced to 10 men just a few moments later, though.

Luongo overran the ball and lunged to win it back from Curtis, only to catch the ankle of the Pompey forward.

Referee Sam Purkiss took some time to think about his decision before brandishing a red card to the Australian midfielder.

Pompey set about trying to make the most of their numerical advantage and when Mahlon Romeo’s shot was blocked, a Sean Raggett follow-up cleared the crossbar

Cowley made a change up front for the closing stages, with Hirst making way for Harrison on 84 minutes.

The hosts kept pushing into stoppage-time, with Romeo and Connor Ogilvie having attempts blocked in quick succession.

And Sheffield Wednesday managed to hold the Blues at bay for the final few seconds to ensure they would leave the south coast with a point.

Pompey (3-4-1-2): Bazunu; Freeman, Raggett (c), Ogilvie; Romeo, Azeez, Williams, Hackett; Harness; Hirst (Harrison 84), Curtis
Booked: Hackett
Subs not used: Bass, Hughes, Jewitt-White, Gassan, Gifford, Marquis

Sheffield Wednesday (3-4-1-2): Peacock-Farrell; Paterson, Palmer, Johnson; Hunt, Dele-Bashiru, Luongo, Shodipo; Bannan (c); Gregory (Berahino 87), Kamberi (Wing 72)
Sent off: Luongo
Booked: Paterson
Subs not used: Wildsmith, Brown, Byers, Corbeanu, Sow

Referee: Sam Purkiss

Attendance: 16,472 (1,549 away fans)


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