|Portsmouth 2 v 0 Rochdale|
SkyBet League One
Saturday, 5th August 2017 Kick-off 15:00
Pompey's perfect and pleasing League One start
Sunday, 6th Aug 2017 16:56 by pompey-fans.com staff
Kenny Jackett hailed Pompey's perfect start but is not getting carried away by one result.
The new boss saw his new skipper, Brett Pitman score a double on his debut, both superbly-taken too, as the Blues chalked up a deserved 2-0 win over Rochdale in front of just over 18,000 at Fratton Park.
Jackett told the Pompey website afterwards: 'We’ve signed a new centre-forward and he’s got a couple of goals, while our new keeper kept a clean sheet. They’re both positives and getting off to a winning start is also very good. It’s great for Brett and it gives him something to build on.
'We had long spells of possession and sometimes didn’t do well enough with it. We could have passed it better and been more crisp. There were also some unforced errors, but these are things that we can work on and I was pleased with our character.
'It would have been nice to take a couple more of those chances in the second half and put it to bed a little bit earlier than we did. But overall I’m pleased with my first competitive game at Fratton Park and we’ll keep trying to improve.
'It was a fantastic crowd with a great atmosphere and I really appreciate them getting behind the players.'
The first key moment came on 21 minutes when Dale defender Keith Keane was sent off for halting Conor Chaplin's pacy run towards goal down the inside right channel.
Pompey took a while to make the advantage count but did so a minute after the break when the ball was worked to Pitman on the left and he cut inside beating two men before deceiving the keeper with a low shot that skidded in for his first Blues goal and Pompey's League One account opener.
Rochdale had their moments and their hopes were boosted when Jamal Lowe was perhaps harshly shown the day's second red card for a high challenge on an opponent as Pompey looked to break out of their own box.
That made it 10 v 10 in the latter stages but Pitman superbly redirected a Gareth Evans cross over the keeper and into the corner of the net - a great finish to round off a very pleasing afternoon for Pompey.
Pompey: McGee; Talbot, Burgess, Whatmough, Holmes-Dennis (Lowe 39); Baker, Rose; Evans, Pitman (c), Bennett; Chaplin (Naismith 71). Subs not used: Bass, Davies, May, Main, Kabamba
Referee: Lee Probert
Attendance: 18,009 (471 away fans)
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