Football: Wimbledon profit from Ekoku double
Wimbledon 4 Portsmouth 1 aet; score at 90min 2-1; agg 5-3
Wednesday 23 September 1998
Wimbledon went into this second round, second leg with a one-goal deficit having lost 2-1 at Fratton Park last week. They were taken to extra time last night by a tenacious Pompey side, who had held the scoreline to 2- 1 at 90 minutes, but in the end they ran out comfortable winners, with Carl Leaburn and Ekoku scoring with headers to secure the victory.
"If we'd been more comfortable in front of goal we could have come away with a win tonight," Alan Ball, Portsmouth's manager, said. As it was it was the home side who dominated both in confidence and in physical presence. The Dons took charge of the opening 15 minutes, with their aerial superiority provided by their three lanky front men, one or more of Leaburn, Cort and Ekoku always in a dangerous position.
Portsmouth soaked up the pressure to take the lead in the 19th minute after a well-worked corner. Sammy Igoe played a deft one-two with Alan McLoughlin and then lofted the ball into the box. Pompey's captain, Adrian Whitbread, was on hand to sidefoot into the net.
Six minutes later the home side pulled a goal back. After being awarded a free-kick 25 yards from the visitors goal, Ekoku tapped the ball to Neal Ardley and the midfielder's fierce shot gave the goalkeeper no chance.
After 55 minutes, the Dons breached Portsmouth's defence again. Russell Perrett mis-headed the ball while trying to clear the visitors' line, Ekoku nipped in and stole it, and sidestepped Aaron Flahaven and scored.
The remainder of the regular 90 minutes was played out in fairly chaotic style with Wimbledon continuing to bombard the Portsmouth box and only some fine saves by Flahaven preventing the visitors from being eliminated during normal time.
Portsmouth fans, possibly forming a slight majority in a pitiful 3,756 crowd were nearly treated to a goal by Martin Phillips eight minutes into extra time, but his effort shook the bar and bounced away. Five minutes later a Wimbledon corner was directed home by Leaburn and midway through the second half of the extra period, Ekoku ensured a 4-1 win on the night and 5-3 aggregate victory by heading in after meeting a cross from Alan Kimble.
Wimbledon (4-3-3): Heald; Jupp (Kimble, h-t), Cunningham, Perry, Thatcher; Ardley, Francis (Roberts, 63), Kennedy; Leaburn, Cort (Euell, h-t), Ekoku. Substitutes not used: Sullivan, Gayle.
Portsmouth (5-3-2): Flahavan; Thorgersen, Whitbread, Perrett, Awford, Simpson (Phillips, 65); McLoughlin, Igoe, Peron; Aloisi, Claridge. Substitutes not used: Knight, Durnin, Soley, Kyzeridis.
Referee: M Riley (Leeds).
Latest in Sport
Andy Murray tells how coach Amélie Mauresmo revealed her pregnancy
Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao: The biggest fight of all time, or maybe just the most lucrative?
What time does Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao start?
Everton 3 Manchester United 0 player ratings: Who scored lower - Marouane Fellaini or Radamel Falcao?
Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao: What time does it start and where can I watch it?
- 1 I've been called an abusive and dangerous parent, when all I did was listen to my transgender child
- 2 Migrant crisis: Greek soldier saved 20 people singlehandedly off Rhodes beach
- 3 Sofyen Belamouadden murder: The inside story of a crime that horrified Britain
- 4 Company breaks open Apple Watch to discover what it says is 'planned obsolescence'
- 5 UK weather: Britain braced for snow to replace sun as arctic air mass moves in
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Migrant boat disaster: Ukip candidate mocks victims in sickening Twitter post
Nigel Farage wants the BBC to stop making programmes like Doctor Who, Strictly Come Dancing, and Top Gear
Global warming: Scientists say temperatures could rise by 6C by 2100 and call for action ahead of UN meeting in Paris
General Election 2015: Britain would become a 'communist dictatorship' under Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon, claims wife of Michael Gove
£20000 - £22500 per annum + OTE £30K: SThree: SThree Group have been well esta...
£28000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A fantastic opportunity has ari...
£19500 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Knowledge of and ability to use...
£28000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They pride themselves that they...