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Page last updated at 15:28 GMT, Sunday, 31 January 2010

Man City   2 - 0   Portsmouth

Emmanuel Adebayor scores his first goal in nearly two months for City
The returning Emmanuel Adebayor netted his seventh goal of the season

By Pranav Soneji

Manchester City closed the gap on fourth-placed Tottenham following a win over Portsmouth, whose problems on and off the field continue to mount.

The hosts took the lead in the 39th minute when Stephen Ireland's pass found Emmanuel Adebayor, who rifled a 20-yard strike beyond David James.

Vincent Kompany doubled the lead on the cusp of half-time with a powerful header from Martin Petrov's corner.

Carlos Tevez hit the post in the 80th minute with an eight-yard snap shot.

The victory leaves City level on points with fifth-placed Liverpool and only one point behind Spurs with two games in hand over both rivals, although boss Roberto Mancini will be grateful for three points following one of their less convincing performances of the season.

But the defeat compounds a debilitating week for beleaguered Portsmouth, who stay rooted to the bottom of the Premier League while off the pitch the multitude of financial problems continue to stack up.

Mancini cites tiredness despite win

Denied the services of defender Younes Kaboul, sold to Spurs in an effort to address the club's £60m debt, Pompey boss Avram Grant made seven changes - most of them enforced - from the team which started the 1-1 draw against West Ham.

The arrival of on-loan signing Quincy Owusu-Abeyie allowed the Israeli to name seven substitutes, one more than at Fratton Park on Tuesday, while goalkeeper James made only his second Premier League appearance in the last three months.

City, in stark contrast, saw captain Kolo Toure return following Ivory Coast's exit from the Africa Cup of Nations, while striker Adebayor made his first start following the deadly gun attack on Togo's team bus prior to the tournament

However, the return of over £40m of talent could not lift a first 30 minutes that was devoid of invention, flair and entertainment as both teams spurned possession with aimless balls into space.

A Jamie O'Hara shot easily saved by Shay Given and an Ireland strike following a sweeping move on the right flank were the only incidents to wake fans from their enforced slumber.

However, Anthony Vanden Borre brought the game to life when his deflected shot rattled the crossbar in the 36th minute.

606: DEBATE
Kragzie

The full-back latched on to John Utaka's intelligent back heel inside the box and rifled his shot into Kompany as the ball looped over Given and on to the crossbar, with Ireland clearing the danger with Danny Webber poised to pounce.

Portsmouth were left to rue that miss as, moments later, Adebayor took advantage of his only chance of the game by latching on to Ireland's floated pass and smashing a rasping drive past James from the edge of the area.

Portsmouth had reason to complain that Adebayor was offside when the pass was played and they suffered a further blow as City doubled their lead in the first minute of injury time.

Again, the marking was poor as Kompany easily outmanoeuvred Tal Ben Haim before powering an unstoppable header past James.

Grant annoyed by two goals

The goal was only the Belgian's second goal in the Premier League since joining City in August 2008.

The opening exchanges of the second half followed a depressingly similar trend to the first half, although Portsmouth's midfield began to impose more authority against their better-paid opponents.

Their best chance fell in the 65th minute when Given spilled a stinging 25-yard drive from Angelo Basinas into the path of Webber, but the striker embarrassingly missed his left-footed follow-up shot from six yards, much to the delight of the Eastlands faithful.

Tevez missed the opportunity to notch his 19th goal of the season when he rattled James' right-hand post in the final 10 minutes, but his rare moment of inaccuracy had no bearing on the final result.


Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini:
"I'm satisfied for the victory, but for the play so-so. We were a little tired after Wednesday's match against Manchester United.

In the first half we did not play well, we did not move the ball quickly and were too slow when we lost possession.

The clean sheet is important, but it was more important that we won today. It's a good situation for us, we have 41 points and have two games in hand."

Portsmouth boss Avram Grant on the prospect of losing more players before January's transfer window closes:
"I don't think so, but I did not think that we would before and we lost one of our best players (Younes Kaboul to Spurs). I don't think we will lose any more but I cannot guarantee this.

"They were not the better team. Their first goal was, in my opinion, offside while the second from a foul from a push on Tal Ben Haim. Their goalkeeper was more busier than our keeper.

"I was impressed with the players, the performance was better, it's just the position of the club off the pitch. The boys are trying their best, they showed character and if they show a little more concentration in the box, we can get results."

Live text and stats

 

Sunday, 31 January 2010

Barclays Premier League

Home Team Score Away Team Time
Man City 2-0 Portsmouth FT
(HT 2-0)
  • Adebayor 40
  • Kompany 45+1

    Man City

    Substitutes

    Portsmouth

    • 01 James
    • 07 Hreidarsson (Finnan 27)
    • 18 Vanden Borre
    • 26 Ben-Haim
    • 05 O'Hara
    • 06 Mullins (Owusu-Abeyie 85)
    • 17 Utaka
    • 23 Boateng yellow card
    • 33 Basinas yellow card
    • 35 Wilson yellow card
    • 19 Webber (Piquionne 77)

    Substitutes

    • 21 Ashdown,
    • 16 Finnan,
    • 46 Sowah,
    • 22 Hughes,
    • 34 Owusu-Abeyie,
    • 41 Ritchie,
    • 09 Piquionne
    Ref: AtkinsonAtt: 44,015
    MAN CITY
    PORTSMOUTH

    Possession

    • Man City 61%
    • Portsmouth 39%

    Attempts on target

    • Man City 6
    • Portsmouth 4

    Attempts off target

    • Man City 7
    • Portsmouth 6

    Corners

    • Man City 10
    • Portsmouth 7

    Fouls

    • Man City 9
    • Portsmouth 15
    • Final Result
    • Full Time
    • 90:00+4:12 The final whistle is blown by the referee.
    • 90:00+2:50 Inswinging corner taken by Craig Bellamy.
    • 90:00+2:10 Shot from deep inside the area by Frederic Piquionne clears the bar.
    • 90:00+0:55 Short corner taken by Carlos Tevez from the right by-line.
    • 89:30 The official flags Frederic Piquionne offside. Free kick taken by Shay Given.
    • 88:49 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Quincy Owusu-Abeyie by Nedum Onuoha. Steve Finnan takes the free kick.
    • 87:08 The official flags Carlos Tevez offside. Anthony Vanden Borre takes the free kick.
    • 86:36 Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Jamie O'Hara from the right by-line.
    • 84:59 Corner from left by-line taken by Craig Bellamy.
    • 84:27 Substitution Hayden Mullins leaves the field to be replaced by Quincy Owusu-Abeyie.
    • 84:03 Effort from 35 yards by Kevin-Prince Boateng went wide right of the target.
    • 82:45 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Carlos Tevez by Steve Finnan. Javier Garrido restarts play with the free kick.
    • 82:10 Kevin-Prince Boateng is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Shay Given takes the indirect free kick.
    • 80:54 Inswinging corner taken from the left by-line by Craig Bellamy, Header from close range by Gareth Barry misses to the right of the goal.
    • 79:25 Shot by Carlos Tevez from deep inside the box hits the post.
    • 77:12 Angelos Basinas takes a short corner.
    • 76:02 Kevin-Prince Boateng takes the direct free kick.
    • 76:02 Substitution Danny Webber goes off and Frederic Piquionne comes on.
    • 76:02 John Utaka fouled by Gareth Barry, the ref awards a free kick.
    • 74:06 Javier Garrido takes the free kick.
    • 74:06 Booking Kevin-Prince Boateng is shown a yellow card for unsporting behaviour.
    • 73:59 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Javier Garrido by Kevin-Prince Boateng.
    • 73:32 Kevin-Prince Boateng challenges Kolo Toure unfairly and gives away a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Kolo Toure.
    • 72:20 Substitution Martin Petrov goes off and Craig Bellamy comes on.
    • 70:10 The official flags John Utaka offside. Nedum Onuoha takes the direct free kick.
    • 69:33 Martin Petrov has an effort at goal from outside the area which goes wide left of the target.
    • 66:18 Unfair challenge on Kevin-Prince Boateng by Gareth Barry results in a free kick. Kevin-Prince Boateng has an effort direct from the free kick.
    • 65:33 Angelos Basinas takes a shot. Save by Shay Given.
    • 63:06 Steve Finnan concedes a free kick for a foul on Carlos Tevez. Martin Petrov produces a strike on goal direct from the free kick, save made by David James.
    • 61:19 Free kick taken by Jamie O'Hara.
    • 61:19 Booking Booking for Nigel De Jong.
    • 61:11 Foul by Nigel De Jong on Hayden Mullins, free kick awarded.
    • 59:15 The official flags Javier Garrido offside. Tal Ben-Haim restarts play with the free kick.
    • 58:01 Substitution Dedryk Boyata comes on in place of Vincent Kompany.
    • 56:29 The assistant referee flags for offside against Kevin-Prince Boateng. Shay Given restarts play with the free kick.
    • 55:17 Angelos Basinas has an effort at goal from outside the box which misses left.
    • 54:44 Corner taken right-footed by Angelos Basinas, clearance made by Kolo Toure.
    • 53:34 Shot from outside the box by Jamie O'Hara goes wide right of the target.
    • 52:12 Corner taken right-footed by Angelos Basinas, Kolo Toure manages to make a clearance.
    • 49:13 Inswinging corner taken from the left by-line by Angelos Basinas, Javier Garrido makes a clearance.
    • 46:37 Free kick awarded for a foul by Anthony Vanden Borre on Carlos Tevez. Javier Garrido takes the free kick.
    • 45:37 Nigel De Jong concedes a free kick for a foul on Marc Wilson. Shot comes in from Jamie O'Hara from the free kick, save made by Shay Given.
    • 45:01 The match restarts for the second half.
    • Half Time
    • 45:00+3:11 The match has reached half-time.
    • 45:00+2:08 Foul by Kevin-Prince Boateng on Carlos Tevez, free kick awarded. Direct free kick taken by Carlos Tevez.
    • 45:00+0:18 Assist on the goal came from Martin Petrov.
    • 45:00+0:18 GOAL - Vincent KompanyMan City 2 - 0 Portsmouth Vincent Kompany grabs a headed goal from close range. Man City 2-0 Portsmouth.
    • 45:00+0:07 Martin Petrov takes the outswinging corner,
    • 44:45 Carlos Tevez takes a shot. Save made by David James.
    • 43:56 Vincent Kompany restarts play with the free kick.
    • 43:56 Booking Angelos Basinas goes into the referee's book.
    • 43:49 Unfair challenge on Nigel De Jong by Angelos Basinas results in a free kick.
    • 41:05 Kevin-Prince Boateng fouled by Emmanuel Adebayor, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick taken by Angelos Basinas.
    • 40:46 Hayden Mullins gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Nigel De Jong. Gareth Barry takes the direct free kick.
    • 39:01 Assist on the goal came from Stephen Ireland.
    • 39:01 GOAL - Emmanuel AdebayorMan City 1 - 0 Portsmouth Emmanuel Adebayor finds the net with a goal from the edge of the penalty area to the top right corner of the goal. Man City 1-0 Portsmouth.
    • 37:48 Free kick awarded for a foul by Kevin-Prince Boateng on Nedum Onuoha. Kolo Toure restarts play with the free kick.
    • 36:53 Substitution Pablo Zabaleta leaves the field to be replaced by Nedum Onuoha.
    • 36:02 Anthony Vanden Borre takes a shot. Blocked by Vincent Kompany.
    • 29:01 Inswinging corner taken by Martin Petrov from the right by-line, Close range headed effort by Vincent Kompany misses to the right of the target.
    • 28:08 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Danny Webber by Javier Garrido. Free kick crossed left-footed by Jamie O'Hara, save by Shay Given.
    • 26:04 Substitution Steve Finnan replaces Hermann Hreidarsson.
    • 24:57 Stephen Ireland takes a shot. David James makes a save.
    • 22:26 Direct effort from the free kick comes in from Martin Petrov. Shot from long distance by Martin Petrov misses to the right of the target.
    • 22:26 Booking Booking for Marc Wilson for unsporting behaviour.
    • 22:19 Marc Wilson concedes a free kick for a foul on Carlos Tevez.
    • 19:24 Corner taken left-footed by Martin Petrov to the near post, save made by David James.
    • 18:40 Martin Petrov takes the outswinging corner, Header from close in by Vincent Kompany misses to the right of the target.
    • 17:46 Stephen Ireland fouled by Kevin-Prince Boateng, the ref awards a free kick. Kolo Toure restarts play with the free kick.
    • 16:47 Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Angelos Basinas from the left by-line, clearance made by Gareth Barry.
    • 16:14 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Anthony Vanden Borre by Emmanuel Adebayor. Jamie O'Hara takes the direct free kick.
    • 13:25 Outswinging corner taken left-footed by Gareth Barry, Anthony Vanden Borre manages to make a clearance.
    • 13:15 Stephen Ireland takes a shot. Blocked by Marc Wilson.
    • 10:50 Free kick awarded for a foul by Anthony Vanden Borre on Javier Garrido. Free kick taken by Shay Given.
    • 10:02 Unfair challenge on John Utaka by Javier Garrido results in a free kick. Jamie O'Hara takes the free kick.
    • 9:43 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Carlos Tevez by Anthony Vanden Borre. Direct free kick taken by Gareth Barry.
    • 8:09 Jamie O'Hara takes a shot. Save made by Shay Given.
    • 7:41 Corner taken right-footed by Angelos Basinas.
    • 4:59 Nigel De Jong fouled by Kevin-Prince Boateng, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick taken by Nigel De Jong.
    • 4:06 Danny Webber challenges Javier Garrido unfairly and gives away a free kick. Javier Garrido takes the free kick.
    • 3:28 Shot from deep inside the area by John Utaka clears the crossbar.
    • 1:39 Corner taken left-footed by Martin Petrov, clearance made by Jamie O'Hara.
    • 0:00 The match begins.

    Live text and data provided by The Press Association.



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    Premier League results

    31 Jan 2010 23:59 UK


    Premier League table snapshot

    As it stood on 31 Jan 2010 23:59 UK

    Position Team P GD PTS
    1 Chelsea 23 38 54
    2 Man Utd 24 36 53
    3 Arsenal 24 32 49
    4 Tottenham 24 20 42
    5 Liverpool 24 16 41
    6 Man City 22 14 41
    7 Aston Villa 23 13 40
    8 Birmingham 23 -1 34
    9 Everton 23 -1 32
    10 Blackburn 24 -15 28
    11 Fulham 23 -2 27
    12 Stoke 21 -7 25
    13 Sunderland 22 -10 23
    14 Wigan 22 -23 22
    15 West Ham 23 -9 21
    16 Bolton 22 -15 21
    17 Wolves 23 -21 21
    18 Burnley 23 -23 20
    19 Hull 23 -26 20
    20 Portsmouth 22 -16 15

    see also
    Man City players support Bridge
    31 Jan 10 |  Man City
    Sunday's football photos
    31 Jan 10 |  Football
    Sunday football as it happened
    31 Jan 10 |  Football
    Defender Kaboul rejoins Tottenham
    30 Jan 10 |  Tottenham
    Storrie refuses to quit at Pompey
    29 Jan 10 |  Portsmouth



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