Connolly buries Bury as Pompey win again

David Connolly scores his second goal in the 2-0 win over Bury    Picture: Barry Zee
David Connolly scores his second goal in the 2-0 win over Bury Picture: Barry Zee

David Connolly was the hero as Pompey’s’ winning ways continued with a 2-0 success against Bury.

Two second-half goals from the 35-year-old made it back-to-back wins for the Blues and took them off the bottom of League One.

Pompey warranted their home victory with a confident second-half display after a dreary opening 45 minutes.

The game swung the home side’s way five minutes after the break as Connolly fired home Jed Wallace’s cross.

And his second on 65 minutes made it four goals in three games for the veteran hitman, as he rifled home a low drive after Johnny Ertl’s shot was saved.

The win lifts the mood around the club further, with Pompey Supporters’ Trust a step closer to assuming control after exchanging contracts with administrators PKF.

Bury had the first chance to threaten when Ertl was harshly penalised for a high foot on Zac Thompson.

But Connolly was alert to clear the ball as the Shakers over-complicated their set-piece routine and Craig Jones failed to get his shot away.

Craig Fagan then had a half-chance, but couldn’t get enough purchase on his effort and Simon Eastwood comfortably gathered.

But Fagan should have made the breakthrough after 12 minutes when Gyepes got the wrong side of the striker from a routine ball into the box.

Fagan had all the time in the world to roll the ball home, but opted for power and blazed his shot high into the Fratton end.

It was the Shakers who were having the better of the chances, and Mark Carrington was the next to threaten as he swivelled and fired wide from the edge of the box.

Steve Schumacher and Thompson then fired over with Pompey struggling to find their rhythm.

The Blues finally carved out a half-chance as Wallace forced his way into the box and teed up Liam Walker, but his 20-yarder was blocked.

But there was no breakthrough before the break and Pompey knew they would need to up their game if that was to change in the second half.

And that’s exactly what happened with Whittingham’s side breaking the deadlock five minutes after the restart.

Wallace was the architect as he found space in the box and cut the ball back perfectly for Connollly, who finished smartly from 10 yards.

That lifted the Blues who were finding some fluency for the first time in the game.

Butler’s free-kick then saw keeper Trevor Carson drop the ball five yards out, but he gathered at the second attempt.

Pompey grabbed a killer second goal after 65 minutes, and it was that man Connolly who did the damage.

Ertl surged into the box and thumped a shot which Carson could only push to the striker, who was as cool as you like and rifled home a left-footed drive.

The confidence was now surging through Pompey and there was real belief in the home side’s play.

Bury were having their odd moments of threat, though, as Steve Schumacher fired over from distance and Ashley Eastham headed over from a few yards.

But this was Pompey’s day and the home side held on for another feel-good win.

League One

POMPEY 2 (Connolly 50, 65)


Att; 11,493

Pompey: Eastwood, Moutaouakil, Gyepes, Rocha, Butler, Wallace, Ertl, Racon, Walker, Connolly (Maloney 90, Agyemang. Subs: Smith, Cooper, Webster, Harris.

Bury: Carson, Skarz, Eastham, Worrall, Schumacher, Jones (Bishop 66), Carrington, Regan, Fagan (Ajose 84), Thompson (Clarke-Harris 80), Ebanks-Landell. Subs: Belford, Healy, Mezague.

Referee: Roger East (Wiltshire).