No Pompey Hat-trick
PORTSMOUTH: Kiely, Pamarot, O'Brien, Primus, Taylor, O'Neil,Davis (Griffin 55), Pedro Mendes, D'Alessandro (Routledge 45),Mwaruwari, LuaLua.
Subs Not Used: Ashdown, Karadas, Hughes.
MAN UTD: Van der Sar (Howard 45), Brown, Ferdinand, Vidic,Silvestre, Ronaldo, Fletcher, Giggs (Smith 45), Park, Rooney (Saha 82), van Nistelrooy.
Subs Not Used: Evra, Richardson.
Any thoughts of a Pompey hat-trick of wins against United at Fratton Park were soon pushed under the carpet on Saturday. The Red Devils raced into a three-goal lead against struggling Portsmouth with two great goals from Cristiano Ronaldo after Ruud van Nistelrooy headed in earlier.
Obviously Harry Redknapp had his say to his battered troops at half-time and they tried to make a game of it in the second period, but the mountain was too high to climb, despite Matt Taylor scoring late in the game.
The first goal came from Giggs after a wonderful run and an exchange of passes with Van Nistelrooy. The ball hit the underside of the bar after the Welsh ace had rounded Kiely, leaving himself with a difficult angle, and the Dutchman headed in the rebound.
Then Ronaldo scored in the 37th minute, he let fly with a 25-yard shot that rose late over the goalkeeper's head.
Wayne Rooney set up Ronaldo in first-half injury time, a clinical finish had the benefit of a deflection to help it home.
Taylor netted a header from Routledge's returned cross but the match was already cut and dried.