The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE TWO - By Daniel Shel­don

PAUL COOK hailed “spe­cial” Gary Roberts as Portsmouth ran riot with a scin­til­lat­ing home dis­play.

Pom­pey ex­tended their un­beaten run at Frat­ton Park to five games and pro­pelled them­selves into sec­ond po­si­tion in the league.

Cook said: “We have had a good day. The lads were ter­rific and some of the goals we scored were top drawer, es­pe­cially the first one to get us back into the game.

“When you can open teams up like that and have a fin­isher like Conor Chaplin, you will al­ways score goals.

“The play­ers de­serve tremen­dous credit for go­ing a goal be­hind in a tough fix­ture and com­ing back to win.

“Gary can open any de­fence at this level. The kid is a spe­cial player, he al­ways has been and he al­ways will be. Our fans love him and his goal takes your breath away.”

Bar­net took the lead in the 27th minute af­ter de­fender Tom Davies han­dled the ball in the area and John Akinde slot­ted the penalty past goal­keeper David Forde.

Pom­pey equalised seven min­utes later when Roberts’ per­fectly-weighted pass found Chaplin, who fired it past a help­less Josh Vick­ers in goal.

Roberts then got him­self on the score­sheet in the 50th minute af­ter turn­ing Bar­net’s Michael Nel­son on the edge of the area be­fore his strike ri­fled into the net.

Carl Baker added Pom­pey’s third on 56 min­utes as he cut into the box from the right wing, curl­ing his low shot into the cor­ner.

Bar­net were then re­duced to ten men when Bira Dem­bele tugged back Chaplin in the area to re­ceive a straight red card but Vick­ers saved Roberts’ at­tempt from the spot.

Sub­sti­tute Mi­lan Lalkovic got the home team’s fourth, and his first goal for Portsmouth, in the 78th minute as his shot curled into the bottom cor­ner, and Danny Rose com­pleted the rout in the 92nd minute.

Bar­net man­ager Martin Allen didn’t think his side de­served such a heavy de­feat.

“I don’t think it was a 5-1 per­for­mance,” he said. “We played very well in the first half and we were un­lucky not to go 2-0 up af­ter John Akinde’s free header from a set play.

“Within our group we had some very im­pres­sive per­for­mances, and I couldn’t go into the dress­ing room after­wards and say to them it was aw­ful.

“At 3-1 down with ten men I could have got every­body to sit back and see the game out but I didn’t want to do that. I still wanted us to go af­ter them, which we did and we got pun­ished.

“They have clearly got the play­ers to pun­ish you in the fi­nal third.”

PIC­TURES: Ian Muir/ProS­ports

GO­ING FOR A SPIN: Goalscorer Conor Chaplin at­tempts an over­head kick

MAGIC MAN: Gary Roberts cel­e­brates Pom­pey’s sec­ond

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