Pompey cruise past Hereford
Piquionne on mark for Pompey
Last Updated: August 25, 2009 10:14pm
Belhadj & Hughes challenge Godsmark
Portsmouth picked up their first win of the season with a 4-1 win over Hereford at Fratton Park.
Frederic Piquionne set Portsmouth on their way with the opener on 20 minutes with his first goal for the club.
John Utaka added a second three minutes later after Piquionne turned provider and Niko Kranjcar made it 3-0 before the break with a shot from the edge of the box.
Richard Hughes got in on the act with his first goal in five-and-a-half years on 56 minutes before Tristan Plummer got a consolation for Hereford just past the hour mark.
Portsmouth goalkeeper David James was rested as he struggles with a knee injury, along with defender Sylvain Distin who has been linked with a move to Aston Villa.
Asmir Begovic deputised for James in goal, while Anthony Vanden Borre, Angelos Basinas, Joel Ward and Hughes also came into the starting line-up.
Portsmouth wasted no time in turning up the pressure and Utaka came close to putting them in front when he nodded wide of the post from Nadir Belhadj's centre after nine minutes.
Utaka was put clean through on goal two minutes later, only for Hereford stopper Adam Bartlett to rush from his line and produce a stunning stop.
Piquionne was unable to latch on to the rebound and hit the post with a header after 15 minutes.
OpenerBut he made no mistake when Kranjcar played him in on goal five minutes later, taking his time before coolly slotting the ball under Bartlett.
Utaka then atoned for his earlier wastefulness after 23 minutes, when Piquionne's cross from the left found him free in the box and he buried Portsmouth's second.
Despite a brief period of pressure around the half-hour mark, Hereford did not look like breaking the Portsmouth rearguard down.
Vanden Borre blew a half chance to make it three when he blazed wide, after running onto Hughes' ball on the right of the box.
While few of his Portsmouth team-mates were overawed by the League Two strugglers, Vanden Borre looked far from comfortable on the ball.
A slip from the Belgian in the left-hand corner of the box nearly gifted Hereford a way back into the game after 41 minutes, but Craig Jones' shot across goal went marginally wide.
Portsmouth then extended their advantage at the other end three minutes before the break, when Kranjcar's low shot from the edge of the box evaded Bartlett's grasp and squirmed home.
Hereford had an opportunity to pull one back two minutes into the second half, but Leon Constantine's header from Southam's cross did not come close to troubling Begovic.
Pompey then bagged their fourth goal after 56 minutes when the Bulls failed to clear their lines on the edge of the box.
The ball broke to Hughes, who lashed home a superb left-footed effort on his first appearance of the season.
Hereford appeared to be dead and buried at this point, but they were given a lifeline when Begovic rushed from his goal to challenge Tristan Plummer on the left-hand edge of the box.
PenaltyThe Bristol City loanee went sprawling and referee Andy D'Urso controversially pointed to the spot, despite vocal protests from the Pompey keeper that he took the ball.
Plummer stepped up and despite Begovic getting a hand to the strike, he was unable to keep it out to his left.
David Nugent had the chance to make it five after Younes Kaboul sent him clean through after 85 minutes, but the substitute fired his shot straight at Bartlett.
Kanu then weaved his magic on the left-hand side of the penalty area and led the Bulls defence a merry dance.
But Pompey skipper Aaron Mokoena's shot was met by a decent stop from the Hereford keeper as Pompey ran out comfortable winners.
Capital One Cup
Tue 25th Aug - Second Round
Peterboro2 - 1Ipswich
Portsmouth4 - 1Hereford
Hartlepool1 - 2Burnley
QPR2 - 1Accrington
Preston2 - 1Leicester
Tranmere0 - 1Bolton
Hull City3 - 1Southend
N Forest2 - 1Middlesbro'
Wolves0 - 0Swindon
Port Vale2 - 0Sheff Wed
Swansea1 - 2Scunthorpe
Southampton1 - 2Birmingham
Leeds2 - 1Watford
West Ham3 - 1Millwall
Gillingham1 - 3Blackburn
Reading1 - 2Barnsley