The Shakers extended their unbeaten run to five games with a gutsy performance against Portsmouth at Gigg Lane. Another game of two halves saw Bury grind out a half time lead thanks to a Dominic Poleon deflected goal. A much better second half performance saw a debatable penalty put away by Steven Schumacher saw all three points claimed.
As early as the second minute, David Worrall attempted to use his pace and trickery in the corner by busting from midfield, but a stern challenge from Lee Williamson. Visitors showed little from the start and their first attempt at getting to the Shakers box came on seven minutes when an Ashley Harris volley flew wide of Trevor Carson’s goal.
Portsmouth showed a brief touch of class on nine minutes when a challenge on Matt Doherty from Brian Howard saw the ball fizzed to Izale McLeod, his quick turn left Mark Hughes rooted to the spot. As McLeod burst into the box, he unleashed a well struck shot that rose and rose and rose until it hit the back of the Manchester Road End
A Bury free kick a minute later following a foul on Troy Hewitt, saw Steven Schumacher curl the ball over everyone in the box and straight into the arms of Pompey keeper Mikkel Anderson. Four minutes later and another free kick a little deeper brought a better delivery that Gabor Gyepes did well to head clear.
Bury took the lead on 19 minutes when a Schumacher corner was half cleared by the Pompey defence. Zac Thompson fired the ball back into the box. Both Adam Lockwood and Dominic Poleon got a touch on the ball as it dribbled towards goal, with Poleon getting the final stroke before it nestled into the bottom corner.
Izale McLeod should have done better with a good half chance on 25 minutes. The ball was flicked into the box towards the former Charlton striker, he allowed it bounce and fired at goal on the half volley, but saw his effort flash high over Carson’s cross bar.
Brian Howard showed some endeavour on the half hour by bursting into the Bury box with pace, he managed to take the ball wide of the six yard box and fired a good shot on goal that Mark Hughes managed to block. The ball deflected back to Howard, but all he could manage was to drive the ball into the side netting as he fell.
Bury had an excellent chance to increase their lead a minute later when they broke quickly. Schumacher eventually releasing the ball to Troy Hewitt on the corner of the Portsmouth box. He laid a good ball back across the area, but behind Schumacher and too far in front of Thompson, allowing Pompey to clear their lines.
Two minutes later and Dominic Poleon collected a good pass from his Leeds United team mate (Zac Thompson) on the corner of the box; he quickly turned and shot a stern drive across the goal and unfortunately just wide of the target.
David Worrall was the next to try his luck, picking up the ball out wide he drifted towards the corner of the box before smashing the ball at goal, aiming for the far corner, but keeper Andersen read the shot well and saved the effort.
Izale McLeod had another good chance on just before the break, picking up the ball on the left, he drove a good curling effort towards the far corner, but watched as his chance again flew wide of the target.
Half Time: Bury 1 Portsmouth 1
Bury came out for the second half and quickly showed their renewed intensity by quickly moving the ball forward. Tom Hopper, a constant thorn in the Pompey side, slipped the ball into the box; Troy Hewitt fired the ball at goal, but straight down the keeper’s throat who pushed it out for a corner. Within five minutes, Hewitt was in again, but this time as he stoked the ball at goal an offside flag was quickly raised by the official.
The controversial moment of the game came on 55 minutes when Dominic Poleon collected the ball in the corner; he quickly burst into the Pompey box under pressure from Carl Dickinson. Both players went to ground and with the lineman flagging furiously, the referee pointed to the spot – much to the annoyance of several Portsmouth players.
As is usual with a Bury penalty, Steven Schumacher confidently stroked the ball into the bottom corner to double the Shakers lead.
Pompey substitute Liam Walker had Pompey’s best effort of the second half when he fired a crisp shot across Trevor Carson’s goal, but like all their previous efforts, the chance flew wide of the target.
Carl Dickinson was next to try his luck on goal, but like most of Portsmouth’s chances – it was from long distance and off target.
Good work form Tom Hopper with just four minutes of the game left the giant form of John Ertl on his backside, before he slipped the ball to Craig Jones, his drive from the edge of the box rose high over the Portsmouth bar. Clever footwork from Schumacher just 30 seconds later saw him crate an excellent chance, but his effort flew wide of the target.
Portsmouth never really threatened the Shakers and three precious points were claimed after an additional four minutes.
It’s impossible to finish this report without mentioning the 806 Portsmouth fans that made the long trip to Bury. An absolute credit to their club, these supporters have far more to worry about than three points, but their conga and constant noise from the away end was a pleasure to see.
Final Score: Bury 2 Portsmouth 0
Gate: 3280 (806)