League One
Walsall0Portsmouth1

Walsall 0-1 Portsmouth

Portsmouth midfielder Gareth Evans has scored three times this season
Portsmouth midfielder Gareth Evans has scored three times this season

Portsmouth moved to within two points of the play-off places with a third successive win as they beat struggling Walsall 1-0 to consign new boss Dean Keates to a second straight loss in charge.

The visitors controlled the first half and Ben Close should have done better than scuff a close-range volley straight at Walsall goalkeeper Liam Roberts from Gareth Evans' 12th-minute cross.

Pompey's 18-goal top scorer Brett Pitman twice glanced headers wide while Close volleyed off-target when Dion Donohue's long throw found him free inside the area.

Portsmouth continued to dominate after the break, Kal Naismith whipping a vicious effort inches wide from 20 yards and seeing another shot flash across goal and just past the post.

Walsall took until the 73rd minute to threaten as Luke Leahy's cross was met by a first-time Amadou Bakayoko volley that flew just over.

But Pompey deservedly won it six minutes later as Jamal Lowe teed-up Evans to fizz a fine strike into the bottom corner from 18 yards and condemn Walsall to a sixth defeat in their last seven.

Match report supplied by the Press Association.

Line-ups

Walsall

  • 13Roberts
  • 6DevlinBooked at 36mins
  • 23Fitzwater
  • 5GuthrieBooked at 76mins
  • 3Leahy
  • 10OztumerSubstituted forShaibuat 83'minutes
  • 7Chambers
  • 8CuvelierSubstituted forDobsonat 72'minutes
  • 11MorrisBooked at 87mins
  • 18NgoySubstituted forKouhyarat 67'minutes
  • 20BakayokoBooked at 58mins

Substitutes

  • 1Gillespie
  • 4Dobson
  • 15Kinsella
  • 16Shaibu
  • 17Flanagan
  • 24Roberts
  • 25Kouhyar

Portsmouth

  • 1McGee
  • 2WalkesBooked at 86mins
  • 5Clarke
  • 16Whatmough
  • 17DonohueBooked at 43mins
  • 20Thompson
  • 18Lowe
  • 26Evans
  • 33CloseSubstituted forRonanat 77'minutes
  • 22Naismith
  • 8Pitman

Substitutes

  • 6Burgess
  • 7O'Keefe
  • 9Hawkins
  • 11Kennedy
  • 14Ronan
  • 35Bass
  • 38Haunstrup
Referee:
Darren Handley
Attendance:
5,159

Match Stats

Home TeamWalsallAway TeamPortsmouth
Possession
Home52%
Away48%
Shots
Home6
Away16
Shots on Target
Home1
Away6
Corners
Home2
Away4
Fouls
Home15
Away10

Live Text

Match ends, Walsall 0, Portsmouth 1.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Walsall 0, Portsmouth 1.

Attempt missed. Maz Kouhyar (Walsall) header from very close range is close, but misses to the left.

Corner, Walsall. Conceded by Jack Whatmough.

Jon Guthrie (Walsall) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Nathan Thompson (Portsmouth).

Foul by Amadou Bakayoko (Walsall).

Nathan Thompson (Portsmouth) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Booking

Kieron Morris (Walsall) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Kieron Morris (Walsall).

Nathan Thompson (Portsmouth) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Booking

Anton Walkes (Portsmouth) is shown the yellow card.

Attempt missed. Amadou Bakayoko (Walsall) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right.

Foul by Kieron Morris (Walsall).

Nathan Thompson (Portsmouth) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Walsall. Justin Shaibu replaces Erhun Oztumer.

Adam Chambers (Walsall) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Connor Ronan (Portsmouth).

Goal!

Goal! Walsall 0, Portsmouth 1. Gareth Evans (Portsmouth) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Jamal Lowe.

Corner, Portsmouth. Conceded by Liam Roberts.

Attempt saved. Brett Pitman (Portsmouth) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top right corner.

Substitution

Substitution, Portsmouth. Connor Ronan replaces Ben Close.

Booking

Jon Guthrie (Walsall) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Jon Guthrie (Walsall).

Jamal Lowe (Portsmouth) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Amadou Bakayoko (Walsall) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Jack Whatmough (Portsmouth).

Attempt missed. Amadou Bakayoko (Walsall) left footed shot from the centre of the box is just a bit too high.

Substitution

Substitution, Walsall. George Dobson replaces Florent Cuvelier because of an injury.

Delay in match Florent Cuvelier (Walsall) because of an injury.

Corner, Walsall. Conceded by Gareth Evans.

Attempt missed. Brett Pitman (Portsmouth) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right.

Substitution

Substitution, Walsall. Maz Kouhyar replaces Julien Ngoy.

Attempt missed. Jack Fitzwater (Walsall) header from the centre of the box is just a bit too high.

Foul by Anton Walkes (Portsmouth).

Amadou Bakayoko (Walsall) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Attempt missed. Kal Naismith (Portsmouth) left footed shot from the left side of the box is close, but misses to the right.

Attempt missed. Kal Naismith (Portsmouth) left footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the right.

Foul by Brett Pitman (Portsmouth).

Adam Chambers (Walsall) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

goal

Scores, Results & Fixtures

Saturday 31st March 2018

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Wigan37248571234880
2Blackburn382310572353779
3Shrewsbury39239752312178
4Rotherham392061364461866
5Scunthorpe401515105748960
6Plymouth39179135147460
7Peterborough3915131161491258
8Charlton381610125046458
9Portsmouth39184174947258
10Bristol Rovers39166175658-254
11Bradford38165174956-753
12Southend391311154559-1450
13Doncaster381213134745249
14Gillingham381213134343049
15Fleetwood39139175157-648
16Blackpool391114144550-547
17Oxford Utd381210165358-546
18Walsall391111174758-1144
19MK Dons391012173952-1342
20Wimbledon39119193750-1342
21Oldham371010175065-1540
22Northampton401010203667-3140
23Rochdale37814153846-838
24Bury3979233259-2730
View full League One table

Top Stories