Football

Johnson slams free-kick award

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Glen Johnson insisted the stunning Ronaldinho free-kick which inspired AC Milan to complete the fight-back which put a damper on Portsmouth's proud European night should never have been allowed.

Portsmouth were two goals up against Milan with six minutes to play in their UEFA Cup tie when England full-back Johnson was ruled to have fouled the Brazilian ace.

Ronaldinho then unleashed an awesome 30-yard blast past goalkeeper David James but Johnson insisted: "It was never a foul in the first place. I won the ball cleanly but the referee thought otherwise and I hope he sees it again on TV."

"With Ronaldinho you always fear the worst in a situation like that and there was no way of stopping that free-kick but the boys are gutted. We knew we should have won."

Nearly two minutes into stoppage time veteran marksman Filippo Inzaghi snaffled an equaliser with a clinical finish to puncture Pompey's glory.

All is not lost for Portsmouth's UEFA Cup hopes after another stirring fight-back by German side Wolfsburg in Portugal earned them a 3-2 win over Sporting Braga.

If Pompey win or even draw in Wolfsburg next Thursday they can still clinch qualification to the knockout stage by finishing third in Group E above Braga with Milan already through having beaten Heerenveen and Braga.

Pointless bottom side Heerenveen come to Fratton Park on December 17 and it could still go right to the wire.

"The boys are very deflated. We've conceded late again - and it has cost us again," said Pompey manager Tony Adams.

"It's my job now to lift them but they should remember that for 80 minutes they were fantastic. It's my job, too, to make sure we keep going for everything, especially, at home, to reward this wonderful crowd."

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2008, All Rights Reserved.

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Topics:
Portsmouth
Internationals
David James
Football
Glen Johnson
Tony Adams

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