The game was an opportunity for the coach to subject his ideal line-up to a last test before the big kick-off next Sunday. Van Marwijk’s favoured eleven did not include Kike Acuña, who surrendered his place in midfield to Kees van Wonderen. Otherwise, Patrick Lodewijks reclaimed his place in goal ahead of Zoetebier after a long layoff due to injury.
The low first-half tempo was directly proportional to the high temperature at Fratton Park. Feyenoord’s difficulties in attack did not help the cause either and the appealing moments for the visitors were few and far between.
The home side had more of an appetite for offence, although the clock was at forty minutes before Portsmouth grabbed the lead. It was Czech international Patrick Berger who got the goal to take his side in one-up at the break.
Gill Swerts started the second half, replacing the disappointing Chong-Gug Song, but the switch did not fire up Feyenoord as Van Marwijk might have hoped. It was the home side that continued to have the upper hand and despite some nice linkups by the Feyenoord forward line, there was little by the way of penetration. Indeed, it was the blues who grabbed the game’s second goal, when Steve Stone caught out Gérard de Nooijer with a perfectly measured pass to Yakubu, who headed past Lodewijks with seven left.
Portsmouth – Feyenoord 2-0 (1-0)
40’ Berger 1-0, 83’ Yakubu 2-0
Feyenoord: Lodewijks; Song (46’ Swerts), Paauwe, Van den Berg, De Nooijer; Kuyt, Schreuder, Van Wonderen (83’ Acuña), Van Persie; Buffel, Lazovic (75’ Bombarda).