Kebe strike denies Pompey
A late Jimmy Kebe strike denied Portsmouth their first Championship win as Reading stole a point.
Last Updated: 14/08/10 6:19pm
A late Jimmy Kebe strike denied Portsmouth their first win of the Championship season as Reading stole a point at Fratton Park.
Forward Nadir Ciftci continued his recent fine form after scoring on his full debut in the Carling Cup at Stevenage last Monday by giving the hosts the lead.
The teenager's goal looked to have given Pompey all three points but the Royals were not to be denied and Mali winger Kebe got on the end of a Gylfi Sigurdsson cross to share the spoils.
Pompey started brightly and were rewarded with a goal just seven minutes in.
Ciftci took a short corner from the right to Matt Ritchie, who returned the
ball to the Dutchman and his right-foot strike appeared to take a deflection
before beating Royals goalkeeper Adam Federici.
Ritchie tried his luck from 25 yards out five minutes later but the winger
failed to test Federici.
But Pompey boss Steve Cotterill was dealt a blow after 17 minutes when John
Utaka's participation finished prematurely due to injury and Joel Ward came on to replace him.
The Royals had their first goalscoring opportunity after 21 minutes when Jobi
McAnuff found space but flashed a right-foot drive over the crossbar.
David Nugent had a chance to double Pompey's lead but the former Preston
striker fluffed his volley from 12 yards out.
Highly-rated midfielder Sigurdsson tried his luck with a volley from just
outside the Portsmouth area but the ball sailed over the bar.
Ritchie could have given the home side a two-goal lead at the break but his
left-foot effort was off target.
Iceland midfielder Sigurdsson was unfortunate eight minutes into the second
half when his free-kick from 30 yards out came back off the post with Jamie
On-loan defender Ibrahima Sonko could have opened his account for Pompey
against his former club but headed straight at Federici.
McAnuff was presented with an opportunity on the hour mark but the former
Watford man failed to hit the target from close range.
Simon Church should have done better 20 minutes from time when he volleyed wide from six yards out and Royals boss Brian McDermott reacted by bringing the Welsh striker off, with long-term injury victim Noel Hunt coming on to make his first appearance since last October.
It looked as though Reading would be consigned to a second defeat in as many Championship games but with four minutes left Sigurdsson swung in a corner from the left and Kebe stabbed home from six yards out to silence the Fratton Park faithful.