Pompey take title
By Simon Fudge. Last Updated: January 1, 1970 1:00am
PORTSMOUTH have taken the Division One title with an entertaining 3-2 victory over a hard-working Rotherham United side at Fratton Park on Sunday evening.
Leicester City's 1-1 home draw to Norwich City earlier in the day opened the door for Harry Redknapp's Pompey to take the championship and two first half goals from Svetoslav Todorov sent the South Coast club on their way to Division One glory.
A wide open first half saw the home side start the match with plenty of possession and their early pressure paid off when Todorov was pulled back just inside Rotherham's penalty box by The Millers' Guy Branston.
Referee Richard Beeby awarded the penalty and Paul Merson delighted the Fratton Park crowd by slotting his right-foot spot-kick home to make it 1-0.
But the visitors quickly drew level five minutes later after a long throw from the right was flicked to an unmarked Branston in the box and he redeemed himself for his earlier penalty give-away by making it 1-1.
However, Pompey were soon back in front as Steve Stone released Vincent Pericard down the right and his cross into the box found the on-rushing Todorov, who finished with aplomb to restore Portsmouth's lead.
Yet, seven minutes later, The Millers were level again as a corner from the right was driven towards the far post and Chris Swailes headed powerfully home to make it 2-2.
But the home side would take a lead into the break as Nigel Quashie's cross into the box from the left was headed down by Pericard to Todorov, who knocked home his second and Pompey's third just before half-time.
The second half saw a party atmosphere around the Fratton Park ground, despite Pompey's lead being just a single goal.
To Rotherham's credit, Ronnie Moore's side kept the home outfit`s back-line honest and gave them a couple of scares in the second period.
Yet, the best chance of the half fell to Portsmouth substitute Yakubu Aiyegbeni but his over-elaboration in front of goal saw him miss the chance to shoot, with the unmarked Todorov left frustrated the ball was not played to him to complete his hat-trick.
However, Pompey held on for the win as the home supporters flooded the pitch to celebrate the club's promotion to The Premiership as Division One champions.
Click below for match stats:
Portsmouth 3-2 Rotherham
Click here for an updated Division One table.