Portsmouth temporarily put their footballing and financial woes behind them on Saturday by claiming their first home league win of the season in a 4-0 hammering of Wigan.
Ivory Coast international Aruna Dindane and French strike partner Frederic Piquionne scored a goal apiece before half-time with Dindane’s second half brace giving Pompey their second 4-0 home win this week following their League Cup win over Stoke City.
Pompey, who were handed a transfer embargo due to their precarious financial position two weeks ago, began this encounter desperate to quell fans’ fears after a slump that has left them bottom of the Premier League.
Wigan, too, were only too happy to get the match underway after days of unwelcome publicity after striker Marlon King was handed an 18-month jail sentence for actual body harm, leading to his sacking by the club.
It was the hosts, however, who went in for the first half interval feeling most buoyed.
Dindane was in the right place at the right time in the 35th minute and kept his cool to lob Chris Kirkland as the Wigan ‘keeper came out to try and block.
Just before the half-time whistle Dindane found Piquionne with a pass in midfield allowing the Frenchman to thunder down the left flank to slide the ball past Kirkland.
Portsmouth resumed in confident fashion but just 10 minutes after the restart Piquionne had Pompey manager Paul Hart worried when he sustained a head injury.
He was stretchered off and put into a headbrace, making way for Nigerian striker Nwankwo Kanu.
Five minutes later Fratton Park was jumping for joy again when Kanu sent the ball into the box where an unmarked Dindane only had to tap the ball home to score his second, and their third.
Moments later Charles N’Zogbia came close to reducing arrears for Wigan but his shot, after a one-two with Kapo, sailed well over David James’ crossbar.
In the final minute of regulation time Kanu won a penalty after being fouled in the box by Emmerson Boyce.
Dindane stepped up to send Kirkland the wrong way to claim a memorable third goal of the match.