Ipswich moved into the Championship play-off positions with a narrow win over Portsmouth.

The visitors made more of the running in the first half, with Ipswich goalkeeper David Stockdale denying Luke Varney and Dave Kitson.

But Keith Andrews scored a close-range winner from a Nathan Ellington knock-down midway through the second half.

Portsmouth, managerless since Steve Cotterill's move to Nottingham Forest, slip to 18th in the table.

Pompey, who have now won only twice in their last nine games, were not only denied by Stockdale, but Liam Lawrence and former Town player David Norris also missed good opportunities.

Lee Bowyer struck Ipswich's only shot on target in the opening period, but Paul Jewell's side improved after the restart and earned the three points when Andrews pounced following Carlos Edwards' cross from the right.

The Republic of Ireland international was in the right place to profit from Ellington's assist to send the majority of the 17,297 crowd home happy.

Portsmouth pressed for an equaliser and Joel Hunt sent a curling shot just over the bar from distance, but Ipswich hung on for their fourth win in six games.

Jewell admitted after the game his side were fortunate to win, saying: "Portsmouth were the better side but we kept working, rode our luck and desire got us through. Sometimes as a manager, results like that are as satisfying as when you play really well, though.

"It gives us confidence that when we're not at our best we can get dig in, get our blocks in and win ugly. But it wasn't a vintage performance by any stretch of the imagination."

Portsmouth caretaker manager Guy Whittingham said he was pleased with the team's performance, but distanced himself from taking on the vacant manager's position on a full-time basis.

"Nothing's changed in that respect. After the game on Saturday I had a headache until ten o'clock.

"Then I couldn't get off to sleep. When I did get to sleep I woke up at four o'clock and I couldn't get back to sleep again.

"I don't want that every week - but I would like to stay on in my capacity as a coach."

Lineup, Bookings (1) & Substitutions (6)

Ipswich

  • 13 Stockdale
  • 03 Cresswell
  • 25 Collins
  • 31 Sonko (Delaney - 60' )
  • 06 Leadbitter
  • 07 Edwards
  • 08 Bowyer Booked
  • 15 Andrews
  • 21 Bullard
  • 10 Chopra (E'-Thomas - 64' )
  • 14 Scotland (Ellington - 46' )

Substitutes

  • 12 Lee-Barrett
  • 05 Delaney
  • 26 Wabara
  • 09 E'-Thomas
  • 18 Ellington

Portsmouth

  • 13 Henderson
  • 02 Ward
  • 03 Rocha (Kanu - 75' )
  • 05 Pearce
  • 15 Halford
  • 26 Ben-Haim
  • 07 Lawrence (Mokoena - 87' )
  • 08 Mullins
  • 19 Norris
  • 11 Varney
  • 18 Kitson (Huseklepp - 73' )

Substitutes

  • 01 Ashdown
  • 04 Mokoena
  • 10 Huseklepp
  • 20 BH Riise
  • 27 Kanu
Ref: Ward
Att: 17,297

Match Stats

Shots

7 16

On target

5 9

Corners

5 9

Fouls

15 11

Live Text Commentary

90:00 +4:18 Full time

Full Time The referee brings the game to a close.

90:00 +4:00

David Norris takes a shot. Save by David Stockdale.

90:00 +3:54

Centre by Joel Ward.

90:00 +3:22

Corner taken by Joel Ward, clearance by Damien Delaney.

90:00 +2:58

Hayden Mullins takes a shot. Grant Leadbitter gets a block in.

90:00 +1:50

The ball is crossed by Greg Halford.

90:00 +1:18

Tal Ben-Haim fouled by Nathan Ellington, the ref awards a free kick. Tal Ben-Haim takes the direct free kick.

90:00 +0:36

Unfair challenge on Lee Bowyer by Tal Ben-Haim results in a free kick. Jimmy Bullard takes the direct free kick.

89:40

Headed effort from deep inside the area by Luke Varney misses to the left of the goal.

89:17

Erik Huseklepp sends in a cross, Nathan Ellington makes a clearance.

88:31

Centre by Greg Halford, Erik Huseklepp takes a shot. Lee Bowyer makes a clearance.

86:59 Substitution

Substitution Aaron Mokoena comes on in place of Liam Lawrence.

85:35

Nathan Ellington gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Joel Ward. Direct free kick taken by Stephen Henderson.

84:17

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Aaron Cresswell by Liam Lawrence. David Stockdale takes the free kick.

84:08

Liam Lawrence crosses the ball, David Stockdale makes a save.

83:53

Foul by Aaron Cresswell on Liam Lawrence, free kick awarded. Free kick taken by Greg Halford.

81:49

Stephen Henderson takes the direct free kick.

81:49 Booking

Booking Lee Bowyer is booked.

81:33

Lee Bowyer gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Liam Lawrence.

79:59

The assistant referee flags for offside against Nathan Ellington. Stephen Henderson takes the indirect free kick.

76:39

Aaron Cresswell fouled by Joel Ward, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick taken by Damien Delaney.

75:19

Keith Andrews crosses the ball, save by Stephen Henderson.

74:28

David Stockdale restarts play with the free kick.

74:28 Substitution

Substitution Nwankwo Kanu comes on in place of Ricardo Rocha.

74:28

Foul by Luke Varney on Keith Andrews, free kick awarded.

72:41

Free kick taken by David Stockdale.

72:41 Substitution

Substitution Dave Kitson leaves the field to be replaced by Erik Huseklepp.

72:41

Jimmy Bullard fouled by David Norris, the ref awards a free kick.

71:25

Shot from just outside the box by Joel Ward goes over the target.

71:15

Greg Halford sends in a cross, clearance by Keith Andrews.

70:53

Carlos Edwards crosses the ball, Joel Ward manages to make a clearance.

70:22

Tal Ben-Haim takes a shot. Blocked by Danny Collins.

70:14

Joel Ward sends in a cross, clearance made by Danny Collins.

69:40

Foul by Lee Bowyer on Greg Halford, free kick awarded. Free kick taken by Greg Halford.

68:34

Nathan Ellington provided the assist for the goal.

68:34 Goal scored

Goal! - Keith Andrews - Ipswich 1 - 0 Portsmouth Keith Andrews finds the back of the net with a goal from inside the six-yard box to the bottom left corner of the goal. Ipswich 1-0 Portsmouth.

66:40

Carlos Edwards produces a cross, Danny Collins takes a shot. Stephen Henderson makes a save.

65:20

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Aaron Cresswell by Joel Ward. Jimmy Bullard crosses the ball from the free kick right-footed from left wing, clearance made by Greg Halford. Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Jimmy Bullard from the right by-line.

63:56 Substitution

Substitution Michael Chopra goes off and Jay Emmanuel-Thomas comes on.

63:39

Carlos Edwards produces a cross.

62:49

Aaron Cresswell crosses the ball, clearance by Greg Halford. Corner taken by Jimmy Bullard, clearance made by Dave Kitson.

61:31

A cross is delivered by Jimmy Bullard, Foul by Nathan Ellington on Ricardo Rocha, free kick awarded. Direct free kick taken by Stephen Henderson.

59:47

Corner taken right-footed by Liam Lawrence, Lee Bowyer manages to make a clearance.

59:47 Substitution

Substitution Damien Delaney replaces Ibrahima Sonko.

58:11

Dave Kitson sends in a cross, David Norris has shot on goal from just outside the penalty box which goes wide of the right-hand upright.

56:37

Foul by Nathan Ellington on Tal Ben-Haim, free kick awarded. Stephen Henderson restarts play with the free kick.

55:50

Nathan Ellington challenges Hayden Mullins unfairly and gives away a free kick. Stephen Henderson takes the direct free kick.

55:14

The ball is swung over by Greg Halford, Danny Collins manages to make a clearance. David Norris has an effort from just inside the box that misses to the left of the target.

54:50

Luke Varney delivers the ball, Danny Collins makes a clearance.

53:57

Michael Chopra gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Tal Ben-Haim. Tal Ben-Haim takes the direct free kick.

53:00

Ibrahima Sonko fouled by Joel Ward, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick taken by David Stockdale.

52:09

The ball is sent over by Jimmy Bullard, Keith Andrews takes a shot. Stephen Henderson makes a save.

50:40

Liam Lawrence fouled by Lee Bowyer, the ref awards a free kick. Liam Lawrence takes the free kick.

45:52

The ball is delivered by Tal Ben-Haim.

45:01

The game restarts for the second half.

45:01 Substitution

Substitution Nathan Ellington on for Jason Scotland.

45:00 +1:08 Half time

Half Time The referee blows for half time.

45:00 +0:41

Dave Kitson concedes a free kick for a foul on Lee Bowyer. Danny Collins restarts play with the free kick.

44:54

Liam Lawrence takes the inswinging corner, David Stockdale makes a save.

44:22

Liam Lawrence delivers a pass corner to short.

43:06

Shot by Carlos Edwards from outside the box goes over the net.

40:22

Grant Leadbitter challenges Liam Lawrence unfairly and gives away a free kick. Greg Halford restarts play with the free kick.

37:40

The ball is sent over by Carlos Edwards, clearance made by Jason Pearce.

37:04

The ball is swung over by Luke Varney.

36:34

Keith Andrews takes a shot. Stephen Henderson makes a save.

33:46

The ball is crossed by Liam Lawrence, clearance by Ibrahima Sonko.

33:13

Unfair challenge on Tal Ben-Haim by Jason Scotland results in a free kick. Free kick taken by Tal Ben-Haim.

32:51

The referee penalises Jason Scotland for handball. Direct free kick taken by Tal Ben-Haim.

31:35

Liam Lawrence sends in a cross, Joel Ward takes a shot. Save by David Stockdale. Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Liam Lawrence from the right by-line, Greg Halford takes a shot. Blocked by Ibrahima Sonko. Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Liam Lawrence from the right by-line, Carlos Edwards manages to make a clearance.

30:47

Ricardo Rocha takes a shot. David Stockdale makes a comfortable save.

30:02

Ibrahima Sonko gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Luke Varney. Free kick taken by Liam Lawrence.

29:02

The official flags Luke Varney offside. Indirect free kick taken by Keith Andrews.

27:46

Liam Lawrence crosses the ball, clearance made by Carlos Edwards. Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Liam Lawrence, Close range shot by Dave Kitson misses to the left of the target.

25:24

Liam Lawrence takes the inswinging corner, Headed effort from inside the area by Greg Halford misses to the right of the target.

24:52

The ball is swung over by Carlos Edwards, Stephen Henderson makes a save.

17:48

Luke Varney takes a shot. David Stockdale makes a fantastic save.

16:19

Jason Scotland challenges Dave Kitson unfairly and gives away a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Stephen Henderson.

15:36

Grant Leadbitter produces a cross, David Norris manages to make a clearance. Outswinging corner taken by Jimmy Bullard from the right by-line, Jason Pearce makes a clearance.

12:26

Shot by Hayden Mullins from outside the box goes high over the crossbar.

11:09

Foul by Lee Bowyer on Liam Lawrence, free kick awarded. Liam Lawrence crosses the ball from the free kick right-footed from right channel, save by David Stockdale.

9:40

Liam Lawrence takes a outswinging corner from the right by-line to the near post, clearance by Jimmy Bullard. David Norris takes a shot. Ibrahima Sonko gets a block in.

9:25

The ball is swung over by Aaron Cresswell, clearance made by Jason Pearce.

7:11

Lee Bowyer takes a shot. Stephen Henderson makes a save. Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Jimmy Bullard, clearance by David Norris.

6:37

Luke Varney concedes a free kick for a foul on Jimmy Bullard. Carlos Edwards takes the direct free kick.

5:27

Liam Lawrence crosses the ball, Aaron Cresswell makes a clearance.

5:19

Joel Ward delivers the ball.

3:30

Foul by Tal Ben-Haim on Carlos Edwards, free kick awarded. Aaron Cresswell fires a strike on goal direct from the free kick.

3:14

Greg Halford challenges Jason Scotland unfairly and gives away a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Grant Leadbitter.

2:19

Inswinging corner taken from the left by-line by Jimmy Bullard, clearance by Jason Pearce.

2:12

Centre by Aaron Cresswell, clearance made by Hayden Mullins.

0:54

Ibrahima Sonko is penalised for handball and concedes a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Jason Pearce.

0:00

The referee gets the game underway.

Live data and text provided by our data suppliers