Pompey return to familiar surroundings hoping to quickly move on from Tuesday night’s gutting 94th minute leveller from Morecambe keeper Roche.
Leyton Orient provide the test, a side 9th in the league that have won only once on the road since October.
That doesn’t mean Orient should be underestimated- a win for the visitors would see them leapfrog Pompey as they sit just one point off the play off places, but having played 2 more games.
The pressure is on for Pompey- a big home clash against promotion opposition and frustration is growing amongst the Fratton Faithful.
The gutting injury time leveller is the 4th time this season Pompey have been pegged back after the board has been signalled- that’s 8 points dropped that should have been secured.
Those 8 points would see Pompey in 3rd, just 3 points off 2nd placed Plymouth. That’s the difference.
Pompey now need to sort out their act, the home loss to Oxford was a blow to Pompey’s automatic promotion hopes so a win tomorrow is vital.
Michael Smith believes 12 wins from the remaining 19 games or 36 points in order to secure automatic promotion.
In this scenario, the Blues would end the season with 81 points- the League Two average for automatic promotion from 3rd place.
Pompey Team News:
News emerged stating Adam Webster is now unlikely to feature tomorrow.
The Pompey graduate defender has picked up a hamstring injury and is therefore set to watch from the stands tomorrow.
Danny Hollands remains out with his broken leg.
Paul Jones won’t feature after leaving for Crawley on loan.
It’s likely that Cook will rotate the squad, re-including Gary Roberts, Kyle Bennett and Adam McGurk.
Player to watch: Kyle Bennett
Bennett needs to step it up- he was too quiet against Oxford and he’ll be our key to success in the remaining games.
Benno has struggled to really shine at times but his flair and skill has never been more crucial to Pompey. We need him at top gear to win.
Leyton Orient Team News:
Ex-Pompey loanee Paul McCallum is out of the clash, along with Dean Cox- the pair have long term knee problems.
Their may be three debutants for Orient however: Jerome Binnom-Williams, Nicky Hunt and Shaun Brisley are pursuing a start.
Player to watch: Jay Simpson
22 goals in 29 games is enough to make him the man to watch in any situation.
Match Facts & Stats
Pompey will be looking to rectify their 3-2 defeat to Orient on Boxing Day with a much needed win at home.
However Pompey haven’t beaten their visitors since 1996.
Yet they do reign supreme in the long term history of the clubs: 15 wins and 13 draws betters Orient’s 12 wins.
At Fratton, Pompey have the record of 9W, 7D and 4L.
3-1- it’ll be tight but I reckon Pompey can see this out.
Orient have struggled on the road and the Blues desperately need a win. 3-1.
Next Fixtures: Rovers Home
A big game next weekend: Bristol Rovers at home. A huge game between 4th and 5th. Rovers are currently 2 points ahead of the Blues but have played 2 more.
A win will be most important, especially securing victories in those games in hand.
PLAY UP POMPEY! POMPEY PLAY UP!