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Kanu puts Portsmouth into FA Cup final

  • Story Highlights
  • Portsmouth beat West Bromwich Albion 1-0 to reach FA Cup final
  • Nigerian international Kanu scores the winning goal in the 54th minute
  • Portsmouth will play winners of second semifinal between Cardiff and Barnsley
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LONDON, England -- Premier League Portsmouth reached their first FA Cup final since 1939 with a 1-0 victory over second-flight West Bromwich Albion at Wembley on Saturday.

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Kanu put paid to the West Bromwich challenge with a 54th minute winner.

A 54th minute goal by former West Bromwich Albion striker Kanu was enough to see off a spirited and skilful challenge by his former club.

They will play the winners of the second semifinal between Barnsley and Cardiff on Sunday.

It was a far from convincing performance from Harry Redknapp's men who were often on the backfoot in the first half as West Brom dominated possession without creating clearcut chances.

Portsmouth, who beat Premier League leaders Manchester United in the quarterfinals, improved after the break and went ahead early in the half.

Czech striker Milan Baros controlled a long ball on his chest, with a suspicion of handball, before sending in his shot which Dean Kiely could only parry.

Kiely still looked favorite to pouch the loose ball until his teammate Zoltan Gera took it away for him and into the path of Nigerian international Kanu who sidefooted home from close range.

As West Brom pushed forward in search of an equalizer they were left more exposed in defense and Baros should have put the game beyond doubt but made a mess of a cast-iron chance afer half-rounding Kiely.

Portsmouth were fortunate when a brilliant 20-meter effort from Robert Koren beat David James only for it to cannon off the crossbar.

West Bromwich substitute Ishmael Miller caused several nervous moments in the Pompey defense in the closing moments, while David Nugent, on as a replacement for Baros, blazed over at the other end.

"It's fantastic to be going to a cup final," Redknapp said.

"Full credit to West Brom, they made a game of it but it's a great day for the club. It's great for the support, I'm delighted for everybody."

This year's FA Cup final has been marked by a string of upsets and Sunday's match at Wembley pits two second flight teams in Cardiff and Barnsley, who shocked Liverpool earlier in the oldest cup competioin in the world. E-mail to a friend E-mail to a friend

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