Allardyce is front-runner for Pompey hot seat

Portsmouth 1 Fulham 1
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The Independent Football

Sam Allardyce, the former Bolton and Newcastle manager, was yesterday quickly installed as the bookies' favourite to replace Harry Redknapp as the new Portsmouth manager.

Pompey's assistant manager, Tony Adams, who cut his managerial teeth somewhat awkwardly at Wycombe, is also a highly fancied runner to step up to replace Redknapp after his hasty departure to Tottenham.

Adams's hopes of landing the job were not helped when Clint Dempsey pounced three minutes from time to earn Fulham their first Premier League away point of the season, denying Portsmouth a fourth successive home win after Peter Crouch's goal.

Peter Storrie, Portsmouth's chief executive, refused to comment on any prospective candidate, explaining that he was still coming to terms with losing his friend and manager to the Londoners, even if a £5m compensation fee could help ease his discomfort.

Storrie said: "It's not something I have been thinking about because I thought Harry would be seeing out his days at Pompey, that he would be here until his contract expired in 2011 and maybe beyond that, too.

"Tony and Joe [Jordan] took the team today and we will look at the situation when we have taken a deep breath. We have heard so many names mentioned – the world and his mate will be linked, but it's too early. Sacha [owner Alexandre Gaydamak] flew in for the game today and we will sit down over the next two or three days and think about it."

On the evidence of yesterday's home crowd reaction, old 'Arry boy has already been forgotten. The home supporters were fervently chanting "Tony's Blue Army", suggesting the former Arsenal captain is well positioned to fill the vacancy, even if he refused to comment about his chances last night.

Jermain Defoe finally breached the Fulham defence with a simple pass that allowed Crouch to smack the ball home on 61 minutes.

Fulham refused to buckle, despite their horrid away form, and it was little surprise when substitute Erik Nevland crossed to the near post and Dempsey volleyed in the equaliser in the 87th minute.

Roy Hodgson, the Fulham manager, said: "Harry has done a wonderful job here and he's going to be a hard man to follow even though I am sorry for [Juande] Ramos. I wish Pompey all the best of luck – it won't be easy to replace him."

Goals: Crouch 61 (1-0); Dempsey 87 (1-1).

Portsmouth (4-4-2): James; Pamarot, Kaboul, Distin, Belhadj; Diop, Diarra (Mvuemba, 83), Hughes, Armand Traore (Kranjcar, 84); Crouch, Defoe. Substitutes not used: Ashdown, Hreidarsson, Utaka, Kanu, Djimi Traoré.

Fulham (4-4-2): Schwarzer; Pantsil (Nevland, 84), Hughes, Hangeland, Konchesky; Davies, Murphy, Bullard, Gera (Dempsey, 71 ); Johnson, Zamora. Substitutes not used: Zuberbuhler, Ki-Hyeon, Milsom, Kallio, Baird.

Referee: M Halsey (Lancashire).

Man of the match: Kaboul.

Attendance: 19,233.