Match Report


Posted By  Tom Ball ,  Thu 21 Jun 12

Coventry City were denied three points at the Ricoh Arena after a last-minute equaliser from visitors Portsmouth.

Gary McSheffrey put City deservedly ahead a minute before the break but Izale McLeod poked home a leveller in the fourth of five minutes of injury time to hand Pompey a share of the spoils.

Mark Robins put out the same Coventry City line up that comprehensively beat Hartlepool 5-0 and Colchester 3-1 away in midweek while Portsmouth caretaker boss Guy Whittingham was forced to make changes after his sides disappointing 3-2 defeat at the hands of Leyton Orient. 

Portsmouth had the first opportunity of the game in the eighth minute, after William Edjegnuele’s indecision forced Cyrus Christie to step in front of Mcleod and clear for a corner.

Christie was again involved shortly after, when his cross was fumbled into the centre of the box whilst the rest of the Sky Blues were on their heels.
Richard Wood found the wrong side of the net in the ninth minute after he rose well above his marker from a Gary McSheffrey corner.

David McGoldrick smartly turned his marker in the 13th minute and forced debutant  keeper Cisak into a good save. Captain Carl Baker picked up the ball after the save before smartly rounding one defender before seeing his shot blocked wide of the post.

McSheffrey’s innocuous looking free kick near the right touchline, 15 minutes in, nearly found the back of the net after evading everybody and forcing Cisak into another good save.

McGoldrick then took advantage of some empty space in the right channel in the 18th and forced Cisak into a safe down low. The resulting corner saw Edjenguele’s header cleared off the line.

Coventry continued to pile on the pressure earning their eighth corner of the game in the 26th minute, after Christie’s low driven cross forced Rocha into sliding in front of the oncoming McGoldrick.

Jon Harley earned the first yellow card in the 32nd minute of the game after a late sliding tackle on full back Christie but two minutes later Mcleod managed to get round Christie in the 34th minute before putting his shot wide of the near post and a sprawling Joe Murphy.

City got their deserved goal just before the break though when James Bailey managed to slide a ball through to an onside McSheffrey who had smartly bent his run behind the last man, before nutmegging the goalkeeper.

Coventry resumed the second half piling on the pressure, McGoldrick found space once again down the right channel and forced Cisak once again into a smart save down to his right.

Edjenguele found the ball drop to him from a corner in the 52nd minute only to see his volley headed over the bar. The following corner saw Edjenguele free once again, this time his header hit the post and was cleared.

Paul Benson found himself unmarked in the 57th minute, eight yards out after McLeod worked himself some space to cross in. Benson’s header wasn’t good enough to test Murphy and floated harmlessly over the cross bar.

Franck Moussa found himself in space 20 yards out and took a shot which sailed over the bar and McSheffrey found himself in front of goal after a one-two with McGoldrick 62 minutes in, his left footed volley was once again kept out by the impressive Cisak.

Christie continued to trouble his opposing full back Harley, after beating him once again his cross was delicately back heeled by Moussa but cleared by the well positioned Adam Webster who had replaced Mustapha Dumbaya.

Moussa found himself in front of goal once again shortly after, before deciding to head back. The ball eventually found its way to the feet of Steve Jennings whose powerfully driven shot was straight at the keeper.

A contentious free kick awarded against David McGoldrick found Webster open on the right touchline. The ball in from the full back caused indecision amongst the Sky Blues back line before evading everybody and drifting out of play.

More indecision from the Sky Blues back line in the 73rd minute saw Edgenguele play the ball back to keeper Murphy, who calmly kicked the ball up before catching it. The resulting indirect free kick, took over two minutes to be taken, was blocked by Joe Murphy, only for the referee to order a retake. The retake was once again blocked by the charging Murphy and went out for a corner.

Portsmouth continued pegging back the Sky Blues before Darel Russel’s shot from 20 yards out forced Murphy into a good save to his right.

Substitute Nathaniel Mendez-Laing managed to drift inside Blair and round Wood before tamely shooting straight into the hands of Murphy in the 83rd minute.

Adam Barton’s relentlessness forced Harley into giving the ball away, Barton smartly played in Baker who left one defender for dead before chipping across goal, the ball inches from the head of McGoldrick at the back post.

McGoldrick did have the ball in the back of the net in 87th minute but was ruled offside. McGoldrick found himself in front of goal after Baker’s powerful effort was palmed straight to the feet of the striker.

Coventry turned off in the fourth minute of injury time though after a long ball up from Webster sailed over an on looking Wood and into the path of McLeod who’s first and only touch slotted past Murphy.

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