Newcastle were 3-0 down after 10 minutes with the central defense, especially Brazilian Claudio Cacapa, not seeming to have turned up for the game.
The defense was just hopeless, certainly not good enough for this level, and were torn apart by a rampant Portsmouth attack in the first 10 minutes.
After just 8 minutes following a corner, the ball rolled out to Pamarot, and from 30 yards he hit an unstoppable shot into Harperâ€™s top left corner giving the goalkeeper no chance.
Then within a minute Benjani went straight through the middle and Cacapa should have stopped him, but was on the wrong side of the forward. Benjani kept going through, easily beat Cacapa and curled the ball past Harper. Portsmouth are 2-0 up.
Then after just 11 minutes, the left the winger got around Taylor easily and again Cacapa is beaten to the ball and Utaka easily takes the ball around Harper, and put the ball easily into the back of the net. Portsmouth are 3-0 up after just 11 minutes.
Sam made a good substitution taking off the sorry Brazilian Cacapa and replaced him with David Rozehnal shortly after the 3rd goal, as he tries to understand what his defense is playing at. It must have been a huge disappointment for the experienced Brazilian – but it was the right thing to do for Newcastle and a brave decision by Allardyce.
Newcastle pulled one back through Owen after 16 minutes. Goalkeeper James could only parry the ball and Owen was on hand to put the ball in the net off Campbell. But the goal is given to Campbell as an own goal.
Newcastle recovered but that was more because Portsmouth took their foot off the accelerator. Newcastle struggled on and a second goal could still put Newcastle in there with a chance of a point. Both Smith and Butt were booked in the first half. Rozehnal also handled in the penalty area and Harry Redknapp went crazy in the technical box because the referee didn’t give a penalty.
Newcastle have absolutely nothing to lose in the second and must still go for a win.Â We’d love to be a fly on the wall for Big Sam’s half time talk.
Newcastle United: Steve Harper, Steven Taylor, Jose Enrique, Claudio Cacapa, Abdoulaye Faye, James Milner, Charles N’Zogbia, Nicky Butt, Joey Barton, Michael Owen, Alan Smith
Subs: Fraser Forster, David Rozehnal, Emre, Geremi, Oba Martins
Portsmouth: David James, Sol Campbell, Sylvain Distin, John Utaka, Niko Kranjcar, Papa Bouba Diop, Glen Johnson, Sulley Muntari, Noe Pamarot, Sean Davis, Benjani
Subs: Jamie Ashdown, Matt Taylor, Lauren, Nwanko Kanu, Pedro Mendes