Halloran 9, 60


Fee 57

PORTLAND United claimed their sixth consecutive league home win as the Blues rose to second in the Sydenhams Wessex Premier Division table with an entertaining 2-1 win over AFC Portchester at the Weyline Stadium.

Portland boss Brendon King had earmarked the Royals as potential title-winners in pre-season and the former Weymouth boss will have been delighted when Alex Halloran put the Blues in front in the ninth minute.

Halloran’s goal ended a move of real quality as Jamie Beasley raided down the right before crossing to the back post.

Ben Morris met his delivery, cushioning a pass for Halloran who struck a crisp left-footed half-volley into the far corner.

Beasley then crashed an effort against the post after an attack involving youngsters Morris and Josh Williams.

Portchester were struggling to seriously work Blues’ keeper Steve Boore and Portland once more went close to grabbing a second through Bailey Rowe.

Beasley and Williams combined to slot the British Virgin Islands international in, the teenager forcing Boore’s opposite number Brad Snelling into a smart stop.

Snelling saved his best form to deny Morris, whose rasping drive was somehow clawed out by the Portchy gloveman.

Portland were able to restrict Portchester to several corners which were dealt with by the Blues’ defence, but the hosts were pegged back after half-time.

Snelling aimed a long ball over the top and Owen Fee latched onto the flick-on before slotting past Boore for 1-1 in the 57th minute.

Parity lasted just three minutes for the visitors as captain Sean Stewart and Williams worked in tandem to find Halloran who turned and stroked home his second from 18 yards.

Snelling had to prevent Morris, plus subs Ryan McKechnie and Eder Batista from adding a third as Portland proved good value for the win.

Speaking to Echosport, Blues’ boss King said: “It was a really, really good performance from us. The lads, individually and collectively were outstanding.

“It took us 15 minutes to get going but once we did we got a goal, it settled us down and from there on I thought we were good to limit them to very few chances.”

Blues: Boore, Bastick, Cox, Stewart, L King, Halloran (Bessant 79), Morris, Williams, Symes, Rowe (Batista 65), Beasley (McKechnie 65).

Match ball sponsor: The Royal Manor of Portland Athletic Club

Attendance: 114

Man of the match: Alex Halloran


t: 01305 830990

e: neil.walton


twitter: @EchoSportNeil