First defeat of the season is harsh on Royals

AFC Portchester striker Alex Baldacchino   Picture: Neil Marshall
AFC Portchester striker Alex Baldacchino Picture: Neil Marshall

AFC Portchester suffered a first defeat of the season with a 1-0 Wessex League premier division reverse at Whitchurch United.

The Royals dominated the game from start to finish but lacked a cutting edge in the final third.

And at the full-time whistle, it was a mistake from visiting goalkeeper Lloyd Thomas in the first half which gifted Whitchurch the points.

The Royals suffered a frustrating opening 45 minutes, dominating proceedings only to go in a goal down at the break.

The visitors took charge from the start and home goalkeeper Brad Snelling kept his side in it with three excellent saves.

Alex Baldacchino, twice, and Miles Everett were foiled by the goalkeeper to keep the scores level.

The hosts were gifted the lead on 25 minutes when Royals goalkeeper Thomas dropped a corner and the home side poked the ball home.

Portchester continued on the offensive for the rest of the half creating lots of chances with no final product.

And the Royals continued to lay siege to the home goal at the start of the second half and felt they should have had a penalty.

Baldacchino was taken out as he tried to reach a ball across the six-yard box but the referee allowed play to go on.

Ten minutes from time the home keeper pulled off another terrific save to keep out a long-range Rob Evans drive.

Baldacchino wasted a great opportunity to level the scores late on but headed over from a good position eight yards out.

And despite a final onslaught on the Whitchurch goal, a combination of resilient home defending, excellent goalkeeping and profligate striking ensured the Royals left empty-handed.

AFC Portchester: Thomas, Evans, Stone, Pottage, Moody, Noakes, Everett, Bye, Sweeney, Baldacchino, Eves. Subs: Griggs, Whittingham, Fancy, Williams, Clark