Cowes Sports entertained United Services Portsmouth in their final pre season friendly on Friday August 28th in front of a capacity crowd of 150 due to the current COVID restrictions.

A very even first half with defences nullifying the oppositions attacking intents. In the 23rd minute Cowes were awarded a free kick just outside the right edge of the US Pompey penalty box, from which Finley Phillips saw his left foot strike cannon back off the foot of the keeper’s left hand upright. Shortly before the break Aaron Burford released James Wykes down the right, he easily beat his marker before his powerful shot was parried away by the Navymen’s keeper as the first half remained goalless.

Just four minutes into the second half and the visitors took the lead with a shot from 12 yards or so found the bottom right corner of Ed Hatt’s goal. A worry for the Yachtsmen on 68 minutes as striker and captain John McKie stayed down following a challenge just outside the right edge of their penalty area and had to be replaced with what looked like a shoulder injury that may well keep him out of the FA Cup tie against Totton & Eling. A challenge near the half way line on 28 minutes saw U S Pompey’s number 4 react by raising his hands for which he recieved a red card. Then a challenge on the half way line between a Pompey player and Aaron Burford left the Cowes player with a dead leg, so he was replaced as well. Minutes later and the ten men doubled there advantage with a second goal from close range. It seemed that the visitoras wanted to give their hosts a chance to get back into the game as they were temporarily reduced to nine men for ten of the final 15 minutes when they had a player sent to the sin bin for dissent whilst their Manager was lucky to only be shown a yellow card for the dissent he gave towrdss the Referee and continued to give until the end of the game. Unfortunately the Island side could not take advantage of their greater numbers and the game finished their preparations for the new season with a 0 – 2 defeat.

Team:- E. Hatt, C. White, S. McFarlane, E. Cranwell, C. Chase, A. Burford, F. Phillips, L. Wright, J. McKie (c), A. Wright, J. Wykes Subs:- J. Conway, B. Snow, J. Wetherick

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