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Blues to fly ‘head on’ at Lymington

Friday 18 Dec 2020

PORTLAND United boss Franklyn Clarke vowed to tackle high-flying Lymington Town “head on” during their Sydenhams Wessex Premier Division scrap. Prior to Tuesday night, Lymington had won all 10 of their league games this season until Bashley upset the formbook with a 3-0 away victory. Portland are looking to pick up their first away points since an impressive 4-2 win at Hamble and Clarke knows his young side will work hard whatever the outcome. He told Echosport: “It’s a tough game, they lost (Tuesday) for the first time. “They’re a good side and it’s always been a tough place to go. It’s a difficult one but we’re going to go there and face it head on. “What we’ve got is a good honest group. “I know they’ll always work hard for me and I know what I’m going to get from them. We’ll give it our best. “What we did against Hamble just shows what we can do when we perform and the quality we have. “We scored four goals away from home, that doesn’t happen by accident – it’s because we’ve got good players.” Portland are expected to bring in a replacement goalkeeper after Josh Lucas broke a hand in the 5-1 loss at Shaftesbury in midweek. Lucas requires surgery, scheduled for today, and is the islanders’ only injury doubt. Portland currently sit in 18th of the 20 teams and could move up to 14th with three points and provided other results go their way. Lymington, meanwhile, sit third on 30 points from 11 games.

Clarke dons gloves after injury

Thursday 17 Dec 2020

PORTLAND United boss Franklyn Clarke donned the gloves during the Blues’ 5-1 loss at Shaftesbury and insisted he would not “shy away” from the challenge. Clarke’s leadership came to the fore after regular keeper Josh Lucas picked up a nasty broken hand – with surgery scheduled for tomorrow. Clarke went between the sticks at 4-1 down with 75 minutes remaining and was beaten late on as Luke Holmes added his second goal of the game. Speaking to Echosport, Clarke admitted he had never kept goal before. He said: “When the game goes like that, I think it was 4-1 at the time, you just do it and get on with it. “I’ve never done that before, it’s a first. It is what it is, I’m not going to shy away from anything. “(Lucas) got injured and I don’t mind (goalkeeping).” Portland travel to high-fliers Lymington on Saturday (3pm) looking for their second win in four games.

Injury mars United defeat

Thursday 17 Dec 2020

SHAFTESBURY 5 PORTLAND UNITED 1 SHAFTESBURY’S dual-registered players shone as Portland United were beaten 5-1 by the Rockies in their Sydenhams Wessex Premier Division clash at Cockrams. Boss Danny Holmes has brought in Southern League winger Luke Burbidge, Luke Holmes and highly-rated Street defender Kameron Andrews. Luke Holmes netted in the first minute after pouncing on a blind pass from Blues’ manager Franklyn Clarke. Portland responded superbly as Joel Hewitt notched his third goal in three games, converting Greg Borthwick’s intercepted cross. Borthwick nearly handed Portland the lead, lashing a shot against the post before the break. Shaftesbury accelerated in the second half, Burbidge scoring a minute after the restart before Andrews headed home for 3-1. The Rockies went 4-1 up when Burbidge exchanged passes with Luke Holmes before firing past Portland keeper Josh Lucas. With 15 minutes to play, Lucas was involved in a nasty collision in which he suffered a clean break to his hand – an injury which requires surgery to pin and plate. Without a keeper on the bench, Clarke donned the gloves for the first time in his career but could not prevent Holmes grabbing his second and the hosts' fifth. Blues: Lucas (Smith 75), Fowles, Hankin (Hutchinson 60), S Buckler, Poole, Clarke, Morris, McKechnie, Borthwick, Hewitt, Williams (Ryan 70). Sub not used: G Carter Attendance: 66

Reserves denied by Bournemouth Sports

Wednesday 16 Dec 2020

BOURNEMOUTH SPORTS 3 PORTLAND UNITED RESERVES 2 PORTLAND United Reserves returned from Chapel Gate empty handed, losing their Dorset Premier League clash with Bournemouth Sports 3-2. In a torrid opening 30 minutes, the Blues were not at their best and shipped three goals without reply. Portland did improve as Aaron Ryan dispossessed a Sports centre-back but his shot was well saved by the home stopper before Lance Wilson dragged a shot wide of the goal when in a good position. The islanders came out resurgent after the break and could have scored early on as Caleb Tennant’s header drifted agonisingly wide before Ryan scored, latching on to Dylan Riley’s neat through ball. Sensing the game was there to be taken, the Blues upped the ante and were rewarded when Riley’s cross from a free-kick was converted by Tyler Butcher for his first goal of the season. In the last 15 minutes Tom Butcher saw a shot from the edge of the box go narrowly wide with the Blues also hitting the crossbar as the draw narrowly evaded the visitors. Blues’ manager Justin Faulkner said: “It was frustrating afternoon for us. We’ve given them three very poor goals in the first 30 minutes through lack of concentration and not putting enough pressure on the ball, that has cost us. “We just left too much for ourselves to do in the second half. Having said that it was a very good effort in the second half, we have scored two, hit the crossbar and had four or five good efforts which have gone just wide so could have easily won it as we were fully in the ascendancy.” Faulkner added: “The league table doesn`t make great reading for us at the moment, there are four of our eight games this season I felt we have deserved more and (Sports) would fall in to that category. “We have given every side a game this season apart from the opening weekend and we will continue to do that as best we can, continue to work hard and I’m sure the results will come. “Obviously the current situation with COVID doesn’t help with the suspension due to lockdown and as we have seen up and down the leagues it is creating quite a few odd results as we try our best to get through it. “We are definitely due a bit of luck, I hope that comes soon.” Blues’ Reserves: Hadley, Hill, Riley, Tennant, Tyler Butcher, Evans, Read, Wilson (Preston), Ryan, Garbutt (Barrell), Tom Butcher (Diaz). Sub not used: James.

United set for Dorset derby

Tuesday 15 Dec 2020

PORTLAND United are on a mission for more points ahead of a Dorset derby at Shaftesbury tonight (7.45pm). After lockdown, the Blues beat Hamble 4-2 and on Saturday lost 2-1 to Fleet with an agonising late concession. Portland boss Franklyn Clarke says there is no hiding from the contest, with the 17th-placed Blues visiting the Rockies in 19th. He told Echosport: “There’s no shying away from it, it’s a massive game. “We’ll approach it just like we did against Hamble. We know what we do well and the way we want to play. “It’s just how well we put that into action. We’ll be looking to replicate what we did at Hamble and pick up some points. “Hopefully we look more of a threat going forward and keep the ball better.” Portland midfielder Oli Lowes misses out against his former club with a one-game suspension after picking up five bookings this season. Clarke will bring in a reserve player to compensate.

Blues ‘tired’ & lack 'conviction'

Monday 14 Dec 2020

“TIRED” Portland United lacked “conviction” in their 2-1 Sydenhams Wessex Premier Division loss to Fleet Town, boss Franklyn Clarke admitted. Clarke’s Blues had fought back superbly after going 1-0 down to Leo Decarbo’s opener, as Ryan McKechnie headed home an equaliser with 19 minutes to play. Portland probed for a winner as time ticked on, but Fleet stole the points as Decarbo’s shot flashed past Josh Lucas in the 92nd minute. The defeat followed Tuesday’s highly impressive 4-2 win over Hamble, a hangover from which Clarke felt had impacted the islanders’ display. He told Echosport: “We looked tired. That performance on Tuesday took a lot out of us. We put a lot into that to get a good result. “We looked a bit leggy (on Saturday), tired and didn’t have enough conviction. “On Tuesday we looked dangerous every time we went forward, but (Saturday) we didn’t look like threatening that much.” Clarke revealed his gameplan had been foiled by conceding first in the second half. “It wasn’t ideal to concede that,” he said. “We spoke at half-time and set out a gameplan to go into the second half with. “We just didn’t stick to it and we’ve paid the consequences in conceding the goal. “It was a good reaction to get the goal back and when we got the goal it was a case of ‘we’re going to push on now and get another one’, which we looked like we were going to do. “We didn’t play well but we have to find a way of winning when we don’t play well – that’s what good teams do. “We can’t concede that goal in the last minute the way we did. We’ve got to go again at Shaftesbury and look more lively.” Portland visit Shaftesbury in league action on Tuesday night, 7.45pm KO.

Sunday 13 Dec 2020

PUFC are delighted to announce the launch of our brand new website which will be coming soon, the finishing touches are now being applied before it is ready to be launched. Dont worry though as the same great features will still be there along with all the archived years so you can take a Blues trip down memory lane, all at the same web address as we have now The new site will have a new, modern and clean cut look about it whilst being as easy to navigate as its predecessor but the big new addition will be the inclusion of a brand new online club shop where you can purchase merchandise (delivered to your door), programmes and even pay for your 100 club. We anticipate the new club shop will be fully operational in early 2021. We are excited by this development and we hope everyone will be pleased with the final result . #theblues

Blues sunk as Fleet fire late blow

Saturday 12 Dec 2020

PORTLAND UNITED 1 McKechnie 71 FLEET TOWN 2 Decarbo 65, 90+2 PORTLAND United suffered an agonising late 2-1 loss at home to Fleet in the Sydenhams Wessex Premier Division. Franklyn Clarke’s Blues were looking to build on a scintillating 4-2 win at much-fancied Hamble on Tuesday, but his fresh-faced side did not reach the same heights. Fleet could have argued to enjoy the better of the chances, also hitting the post, but Portland will be disappointed not to hold on to a point. Player-manager Clarke again started in midfield and forced away keeper Harry Nash into a solid stop in the 11th minute. Fleet saw a weak shout for a penalty waved away by referee Darren Cooley before home goalkeeper Josh Lucas produced a good save to preserve parity into the second half. Lucas was in fine form after the restart, making another big stop, but he could do nothing about Fleet’s opener as Leo Decarbo scored from a free-kick. The concession kicked Portland into gear as star winger Ben Morris shot wide before the Blues wrestled their way back into the game. Captain Ryan McKechnie was on hand to convert a difficult chance at the far post, using a sprightly leap to nod past Nash in the 71st minute. Portland pushed for a winner in the closing stages, but Fleet had the final say when Decarbo grabbed his second, cutting inside and rifling past Lucas. Portland travel to Shaftesbury on Tuesday (7.45pm). Blues: Lucas, Lowes, Hankin (Hutchinson 60), S Buckler, Poole, F Clarke, Morris, McKechnie, Borthwick (Hanratty 75), Hewitt (L Clarke 46), Williams. Subs not used: Fowles, Carter. Attendance: 83 Match sponsor: Robin Satherley Match ball sponsor: Jackie Trevett Programme sponsor: Underdog Fitness

Clarke working on identity

Friday 11 Dec 2020

FRANKLYN Clarke has revealed how lockdown presented him with the chance to work on a clear “identity” for his Portland United side. Clarke has overseen five games at the Blues since succeeding Callum Brooks as boss. During that time, along with assistant Sam Poole, he has focused on tightening up Portland’s defence, claiming four points from five games. Now, Clarke has created a blueprint to embed a philosophy within the islanders’ play. “It’s just getting an identity – how we’re going to be in possession and out,” he told Echosport. “It’s important to have a philosophy and a way of playing and stick to that, work on that in training and implement it in games. “Just plan for the future with a certain way of doing things. I’m excited to get going. “We’re happy to get back playing and we’ve got an important run of games coming up. It’s important we pick up some points.”

KO now 2 pm!

Tuesday 08 Dec 2020

Please note and spread the word - ko has been brought forward an hour and is now 2 pm.

Blues return to face Bournemouth

Friday 04 Dec 2020

PORTLAND United boss Franklyn Clarke is relishing the return to football after lockdown with the Blues set to visit Bournemouth Poppies tomorrow (3pm). Portland were among the few clubs to play on the eve of the second national lockdown and return to the Sydenhams Wessex Premier Division in 19th place. Clarke has used the enforced break to forge plans for the islanders’ style of play, while also signing striker Lewis Clarke from Bridport. And the Blues will be playing in front of a crowd after revised government guidelines paved the way for spectators to return. Clarke told Echosport: “Every game’s massive. We want to get up the table as quick as we can. “That starts with Poppies and it’s nice to play in front of the fans again. “Like everyone says, without the fans it’s not the same at all. I’m buzzing to be back. We’ll go there looking to pick up some points.” While form has gone out of the window, Clarke is well-prepared for the restart. “I’ve got an idea of the team and how we’re going to start and formations,” he revealed. “I like to wait and see what the lads are like and then make my final decision in terms of selection. Everyone’s just buzzing to get back.”

Lewis Clarke back for Blues

Thursday 26 Nov 2020

Franklyn is very pleased to have re-signed LEWIS CLARKE. Lewis last played for The Blues in the season 2018/19, he was also a member of the squad which won the Sydenhams Wessex League Premier Division in the 2016/17 season scoring nine goals. Since the 2013/14 season, Lewis has worn the blue shirt a total of 120 times, scoring 62 goals along the way. Franklyn commented: “I’m happy to bring Lewis in as another attacking option - he brings something slightly different to what we already have. He was keen to come back to Portland and I’m glad to have him onboard”. Welcome back Lewis. #theblues