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Match Reports

Pompey 1 Shrewsbury 1

Swanson on target in Fratton stalemate

29 October 2022

Zak Swanson scores for Pompey against Shrewsbury Town at Fratton Park
Photo: Jason Brown/Pro Sports Images
Match Reports

Pompey 1 Shrewsbury 1

Swanson on target in Fratton stalemate

29 October 2022

There was more Fratton frustration for Pompey, as Shrewsbury held them to a draw for the fourth successive home league game.

They dominated the entire contest, only for Elliott Bennett to score with the visitors’ only shot on target.

Right-back Zak Swanson’s curler drew the Blues level moments later, but another goal was not forthcoming.

Danny Cowley made two changes from the side that were held to a draw by Oxford earlier in the week.

They both came in the wide positions, where Josh Koroma and Owen Dale replaced Ronan Curtis and Reeco Hackett.

The latter was suffering from a sickness bug, but Joe Morrell was fit enough to claim a place on the bench.

Former Blues forward Aiden O’Brien – who has recently had injury problems of his own – was not included in Steve Cotterill’s Shrews squad.

The first half followed a familiar pattern, with the visitors getting everyone behind the ball to frustrate Pompey.

Dane Scarlett did manage to charge down a Marko Maroši clearance, but the ball ricocheted clear of any of his team-mates.

They were certainly having to remain patient, passing the ball around and trying to search for a route through.

It might have come when Dale swung a cross into the mixer, but Colby Bishop could only guide his header into Maroši’s arms.

And Shrewsbury took the lead against the run of play on 25 minutes, with Bennett calmly slotting home after Carl Winchester’s effort had come back off the post.

Pompey hit back almost immediately, though, with Dale’s strike taking a wicked deflection off Luke Leahy and drawing a superb save from Maroši.

The resulting corner was worked to SWANSON on the edge of the box and he curled home a fine left-footed finish for a first goal in senior football.

They looked to build more momentum and kept applying pressure, with a Scarlett shot unconvincingly beaten away by Maroši.

Half Time: Pompey 1 Shrewsbury 1

It was a similar story when he second half resumed, with the hosts controlling possession and coming up against a wall of Shrews.

They were working hard to find a breakthrough, but were just lacking a key final ball to open up their opponents.

And when Swanson did swing in a superb cross from the right, Chey Dunkley was there to head it behind.

Pompey were forced into a change on 65 minutes, when Sean Raggett seemed to aggravate the back injury that had forced him off against Oxford.

Michael Morrison came on to replace him, while Jay Mingi also made way for Morrell in the centre of the pitch.

They kept battling away and Bishop could not keep his header down after diving to get on the end of Swanson’s delivery.

Joe Pigott was brought on for Scarlett as Cowley looked to add some fresh energy to his forward line in the closing stages, while Swanson then made way for Kieron Freeman.

Dale was next to send in a cross on 85 minutes and although Bishop, Pigott and Connor Ogilvie were all in the box, none of them could force the ball home.

Shrewsbury were left camped inside their own half for the closing stages, but Pompey were unable to turn their superior possession into a winning goal.

Pompey (4-4-2): Griffiths; Swanson (Freeman 83), Raggett (Morrison 65), Robertson (c), Ogilvie; Dale, Tunnicliffe, Mingi (Morrell 65), Koroma; Bishop, Scarlett (Pigott 80)
Goals: Swanson 29
Booked: Mingi
Subs not used: Oluwayemi, Hume, Curtis

Shrewsbury (3-4-3): Maroši; Pennington, Dunkley, Flanagan; Bennett (Moore 60), Winchester, Leahy (c), Shipley; Bayliss, Saydee (Pyke 76), Street (Bowman 76)
Goals: Bennett 25
Subs not used: Burgoyne, Barlow, Bloxham, Caton

Referee: Tom Reeves

Attendance: 17,792 (426 away fans)

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