Date: 26th September 2007 at 7:31pm
Written by:

Our hopes of reaching the 4th round of the Carling Cup are over.It wasnt to be for the Clarets and we lost 0-1 to Portsmouth at Turf Moor last night thanks to a David Nugent goal in the 67th minute!

It was however a game of two halves! Burnley in charge in the first half but couldnt score and Pompey in the second who could albeit only once and a rather dubious goal at that. There is an indication Nugent’s goal also involved handball! By the way Pompey may have played a second eleven but we also made significant changes with no Gray,our top scorer! Steve Cotterill made five changes to the side that drew 2-2 with Bristol City at Ashton Gate on Saturday. Morale victory to the Clarets I think and we didnt disgrace ourselves against a Premier League side.

The Clarets lined up in an unfamilair 4-1-4-1 formation with Ade Akinbiyi leading the attack. Alan Mahon also made a return but there was no place for the injured Chris McCann and we saw James O’Connor coming into the side for his first game in sometime. Blake and Alexander were both relegated to the bench which they shared with Jensen, Jones and Gudjonsson. This meant a start for Unsworth who took up a more unfamiliar midfield role with a back four of Duff,Carlisle,Caldwell and Jordan.

Burnley started the brighter of the two teams and showed some attacking promise but in all cases the attacks seemed to fizzle out.

Akinbiyi nearly got onto a through ball from Lafferty after 12 minutes but Distin got in the way.

The resulting corner saw Clarke Carlisle pick up a clearance on the edge of the box but his shot was wide of the left hand post.

Portsmouth didnt have any chances at all until about 25 minutes into the match when Pedro Mendes attempted a long-range effort which thankfully he put wide of Kiraly’s goal.

Akinbiyi then came close shortly after, but he couldnt get his shot away.

Kiraly stole the ball off Nugent’s toes after attempting to curl it around the keeper although the former Preston man did look a mile offside before then

Steve Caldwell got in a point blank header after 30 minutes from a Mahon corner but Pompey keeper Jamie Ashdown got in a splendid save to deny our Captain.

A couple of minutes later Kyle Lafferty’s looping header saw Ashdown save yet again.

Kiraly got in an excellent save after 37 minutes folowing a good effort from Matt Taylor to deny Pompey taking the lead.

Burnley continued to press and won their eighth corner of the match after 40 minutes . A cross into the box found Akinbiyi but he should have realised James O’Connor was just behind him and could have got a better header in.

So 0-0 at half-time and very much Burnley’s half

Mahon broke through and tried to put Akinbiyi through on goal but he fluffed it, much to the relief of Ashdown who collected the ball with ease.

The Clarets were now looking ragged and under pressure though but Alan Mahon’s long range shot restored some confidence with Lafferty also testing Ashdown two minutes later after a good turn and shot from the edge of the box.

But it was that man Nugent who gave Pompey the lead on 67 minutes after getting behind the Clarets defence. Nugent tapped it past Kiraly after what looked like a strong claim for handball

It was now time for Cotterill to try and change things and on 75 minutes on came Robbie Blake and Graham Alexander to replace Unsworth and James O’Connor.

In the final 10 minutes, Alan Mahon tried a shot from 35 yards. The ball bounced in front of Ashdown but the keeper got it at the second attempt.

Blake then put in a low free kick but he only managed to hit the Portsmouth wall and that was it no further action and our Carling Cup dreams were over with Pompey going through to the next round.


Burnley: Kiraly, Duff, Carlisle, Caldwell, Unsworth (Blake 76), Jordan, O’Connor (Alexander 77), Spicer, Mahon, Lafferty (Jones 83), Akinbiyi.

Subs Not Used: Jensen, Gudjonsson.

Booked: O’Connor.

Portsmouth: Ashdown, Lauren, Distin, Traore, Pamarot, Mvuemba (Diop 90), Taylor, Hughes, Pedro Mendes, Mwaruwari (Utaka 46), Nugent.

Subs Not Used: James, Cranie, Kranjcar.

Booked: Traore, Distin.

Goals: Nugent 69.

Ref: Mark Clattenburg (Tyne & Wear).