Piquionne grabs Portsmouth brace

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Frederic Piquionne scored a debut double as Portsmouth beat Rangers 2-0 in both sides' final friendly before the start of their league seasons.

Piquionne gave Pompey fans a glimpse of what to expect during his year-long loan from Lyon with two expertly taken goals at sun-drenched Fratton Park.

The Frenchman opened the scoring just past the half-hour mark when he headed in Younes Kaboul's floated cross, and he netted his second shortly after half-time when he rounded Allan McGregor and rolled the ball into the empty net.

Rangers arrived on the south coast without four of their Scotland internationals, who were preparing for Wednesday's crucial World Cup qualifier in Norway.

Andy Little therefore began at right-back and the youngster looked lively early on, forcing a fine stop from David James. Left-back Sasa Papac then tested James from long range before DaMarcus Beasley's cutback narrowly failed to find Kris Boyd.

Despite their bright start, Rangers fell behind in the 31st minute when Kaboul drifted a superb cross into the box for Piquionne to nod past McGregor.

The visitors tried to respond but John Fleck's off-target curling effort from 25 yards was as close as they came before half-time.

Rangers manager Walter Smith made three changes during the break but Portsmouth were immediately on top after the restart.

John Utaka's chipped cross was acrobatically cleared by Little with Piquionne waiting to pounce, but the striker did not have to wait long for his second goal, which arrived in the 51st minute.

Piquionne exposed Rangers captain David Weir's lack of pace before keeping his cool to go round McGregor and score.

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David James
Younes Kaboul
Premier League
John Utaka

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