JONATHAN Greening’s red card left York City all at sea on the south coast as Jackie McNamara’s men were thrashed 6-0 by Portsmouth.

Wave after wave of home attacks, following Greening’s 45th-minute dismissal for an elbow on Pompey captain Michael Doyle, saw on-loan Sheffield United striker Marc McNulty hit a second-half hat-trick with Ben Davies, Ben Tollitt and Conor Chaplin also getting on the scorehsheet on a horrendous night for the visitors.

Even allowing for their numerical disadvantage, it was a pathetic capitulation by the visitors, who have now lost their last seven matches.

McNamara had earlier named only six substitutes for the match, deciding to leave out-of-favour quintet Keith Lowe, John McCombe, Marvin McCoy, Josh Carson and Tom Platt in North Yorkshire.

But the Minstermen’s starting XI made a bright start to the contest and quick-thinking from a free kick saw Greening tee up an eighth-minute chance for Vadaine Oliver but his ten-yard volley lacked the power to trouble home keeper Brian Murphy.

Portsmouth gradually settled, though, with Caolan Lavery brushing the sidenetting after lifting the ball over George Swan through the left channel.

McNulty also glanced a header wide from Davies’ right-wing free kick and Doyle’s edge-of-the-box, half-volley cleared Scott Flinders’ crossbar after the City keeper had punched away a corner.

On 20 minutes, Eddie Nolan survived strong penalty appeals when he appeared to nudge into McNulty and Flinders was called into action moments later, parrying away a low drive by Lavery after he had burst through the left channel.

Lavery went on to drive wide after beating William Boyle through the right channel and McNulty shot over after racing on to a Kyle Bennett through ball.

Just past the half-hour mark, Bennett drilled a firm attempt narrowly wide from 25 yards, while McNulty’s low effort was kept out at the near post by Flinders after the on-loan Sheffield United striker had ghosted through the left channel again to collect Adam Webster’s forward pass.

With the seconds ticking down to half-time, Greening then charged into an aerial challenge on Doyle and, having appeared to lead with his elbow, referee Iain Williamson had no hesitation in brandishing his red card. Oliver went on to try his luck from 30 yards in first-half stoppage time for the ten men but Murphy gathered comfortably.

But Paul Cook’s men made their extra man count in devastating fashion after the break.

Within seconds of the restart, Flinders had made a brilliant reflex save to keep out Lavery’s near-post header from Davies’ right-wing cross.

But Pompey were ahead on 49 minutes when the dangerous Davies raided down the right and cut inside Anthony Straker before sending in a left-footed cross that eluded two home attackers and also deceived Flinders to find the net.

After Bennett had fired over from eight yards, the lead was doubled on 52 minutes when Gareth Evans was given the freedom of the right flank to pick out Lavery in the penalty box.

His 15-yard shot was wayward but fell to McNulty who tapped in from four yards.

Danny Hollands and Doyle then chanced their arm from distance and, after Sinclair forced a near-post save on a rare City counter-attack, McNulty got his second of the evening, releasing Bennett down the right and then charging into the penalty box to receive the return ball and beat Flinders from 12 yards.

A one-on-one save by Flinders prevented Hollands from getting in on the act moments later but McNulty completed his hat-trick on 71 minutes when he charged through the left channel and beat the City net-minder with immaculate composure.

Following good efforts by Chaplin and Evans, sub Tollitt made it 5-0 on 80 minutes, diverting Enda Stevens’ left-wing cross past Flinders from seven yards.

Chaplin then completed a miserable evening for the Minstermen when he slid in to add a sixth after Flinders could not hold on to Lavery’s rising 15-yard drive.


Scott Flinders: 5

Eddie Nolan: 4

George Swan: 3

William Boyle: 3

Femi Ilesanmi: 4

Jonathan Greening: 3

Bryn Morris: 3

James Berrett: 3

Emile Sinclair: 3

Vadaine Oliver: 4

Anthony Straker 3

Star man: Flinders – made a few good saves to keep score down

Substitutes: Ben Godfrey 4 (for Sinclair, 57), Jake Hyde (for Oliver, 75).

Subs not used: Michael Ingham, Taron Hare, Rhys Turner, Ben Godfrey, David Tutonda.

Portsmouth Brian Murphy, Ben Davies (Adam Barton, 73), Adam Webster, Christian Burgess, Enda Stevens, Michael Doyle, Danny Hollands, Gareth Evans, Marc McNulty (Conor Chaplin, 73), Kyle Bennett (Ben Tollitt, 76), Caolan Lavery. Subs not used: Alex Bass, Rommy Boco, Adam McGurk, Matt Clarke. Referee: Iain Williamson rating: 7/10 Booked: Swan 25, Bennett 45+1.

Sent off: Greening 45.

Attendance: 13,616 (141 from City)

Shots on target: Portsmouth 13, City 3

Shots off target: Portsmouth 12, City 0

Corners: Portsmouth 8, City 4

Fouls conceded: Portsmouth 11, City 15

Offsides: Portsmouth 3, City 2