Blues bounce back in four-goal first half

Portsmouth 2 Birmingham 2

Portsmouth 2 Birmingham 2

Birmingham bounced back from two Jermain Defoe goals down in the first eight minutes at Portsmouth as Fabrice Muamba struck from a corner and Sebastian Larsson curled home an impressive free kick.

FA Cup favourites Pompey started like a train and Defoe, ineligible for Wembley, but back after missing the Old Trafford triumph, drove home a penalty after David Murphy handled Milan Baros’s cross.

Defoe struck again two minutes later after keeper Maik Taylor parried shots by Sulley Muntari and Baros but Muamba came up with an instant reply and five minutes before the break Larsson’s splendid strike following a trip on Mikael Forssell by Glen Johnson completed the visitors’ first-half comeback.

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