Wickham 6, 23, 29 pen, Gadsby 26, Sheehy 39, Delves 45+2, Borthwick 83


PORTLAND United progressed to the Velocity Wessex League Cup third round with a thumping 7-0 victory over Romsey Town at the Camp & Satherley Stadium.

The Blues, led by an imperious display from Joe Wickham, bagged six goals in the first half to settle the tie in 45 minutes and extend to 14 games Portland’s incredible unbeaten home run.

Romsey, who made seven changes from their regular line-up, are no pushovers and currently reside in third place in Wessex Division One with the second-best attacking record.

But Portland, who themselves showed eight alterations from Saturday’s 2-0 win over Poppies, completely blew Town away.

READ MORE: Portland United 2-0 Bournemouth Poppies - report

Wickham set the tone with his pace, energy and devastating directness, all three attributes combining for his first goal.

Picking up possession on the edge of the box, he darted left and right to make room for a beautiful curling effort into the far corner on six minutes.

Jack Delves blazed over and later curled a stinging effort at Romsey keeper Sam White but Portland were playing a pleasing-on-the-eye brand of one-touch pass and move football.

It seemed only a matter time until they added a second and, when they did, the floodgates opened.

Wickham was the scorer again, White getting caught underneath his corner which sailed straight into the net with a boost from the infamous Portland wind.

Unfortunately for White he was deceived again in identical fashion, this time from a Delves corner as he allowed it to hit the near post where Sam Gadsby was on hand to bundle home his first senior goal for Portland.

And, in the 29th minute, Wickham made it 4-0 with his hat-trick, winning a penalty by drawing a clumsy foul from Alex Wilson and then powering the spot-kick through the grasp of White, who had guessed correctly to his right.

Portland were now tearing Romsey apart as Hayden Scott went close and White nearly spilled a vicious Delves effort over the line.

To their credit, Romsey came close to a consolation when an intricate move played Ben Beard in and the right-back smashed a shot against the woodwork.

However, it was only brief respite from Portland’s onslaught as Sheehy made it five with a close-range effort.

Portland’s sixth came on the stroke of half-time, White again culpable as he could only palm an inswinging Delves corner into the far side-netting for 6-0.

Portland boss Kyle Critchell brought on Jacob Coombs for Wickham at the break but, understandably, Portland failed to reach the same heights of a blistering first half.

Romsey skipper Owen Holloway curled a free-kick over before Critchell introduced Greg Borthwick, Ben Morris and Ryan McKechnie for Sheehy, Scott and Jamie Cleaver.

Borthwick sliced a good chance for number seven before Romsey were denied a consolation when Harrison Bruton tipped over a dipping free-kick from Tiago Moreno.

Town did deserve a goal as they showed tremendous heart given the circumstances, sub Jahiem Dotse volleying over a good late chance.

Instead, it was Portland who found the net next as McKechnie superbly controlled into space and set Borthwick scampering away.

The striker coolly picked his spot, clipping his tenth goal in seven games into the bottom-left corner, scoring for the seventh consecutive match.

Portland could have had an eighth as Jack Steele was denied by White moments before Moreno blasted a presentable opening at Bruton.

Moreno rifled wide another chance as Town tried and failed to score, but Portland held firm to add a clean sheet to a near-perfect cup win.

Blues: Bruton, Steele, Harvey, Callow, Gadsby, Cleaver (Morris 61), Wickham (Coombs 46), Delves, Sheehy (Borthwick 61), Scott (McKechnie 61), Woolford.

Referee: Jordan White.

Attendance: 92.

Match sponsor: Quiddles.

Man of the match sponsor: Vic Holland.

Ball sponsor: Robin Satherley.

Programme sponsors: Lighthouse Windows.