Pompey travel the long way to Sheffield today for what is most certainly one of the hardest games of the season. Pompey may be picking up a fair few points at the moment, but Sheffield have 10 more than the Blues and again are battling for promotion after narrowly losing out to local rivals Sheffield Wednesday. It calls for an entertaining game tonight, even more so as it is on Sky Sports 1 from 19:30 so lets hope Pompey can get a good result here.
Vital Quotes: ‘No regrets’
‘No regrets’ are the words of former Sheffield favourite Lee Williamson. This comes after being questioned over his decision to leave United in the summer to join Pompey on consistent 1-month contracts. As he gears up for tonight’s clash he is sure to get a welcoming reception as this is his first return since leaving 2 months ago.
Sheffield United Team News:
Sheffield head into tonight’s match with no new injury worries and are left with a full squad to choose from, so long as former Pompey player Dave Kitson returns after suffering form a virus. He is set to line up for the first time against the Blues since voluntarily terminating his contract to help Pompey get out of administration.
Player to watch: Nick Blackman
Nick Blackman his certainly a man that could trouble the Pompey defence tonight as he stands as the Blades top scorer so far this season with 7 goals. However, ex-Blues man Kitson could also be of some worry as he seems the current target man with his 3 goals and 3 assists. This means Appy’s defence could come under a lot of pressure so it proves crucial they are on top form.
Pompey Team News:
Pompey remain without midfielder Darrell Russell ahead of the game tonight as he is still sidelined with a hamstring problem. Mikkel Andersen however is expected to return to fall fitness after he suffered a minor hip problem and is most likely to retain his starting XI place. Pompey have one less forward now after Wes Thomas has been recalled form his loan by parent club Bournemouth but Pompey have acted almost immediately after signing another loanee on the form of Scott Allan. The West Brom man has only just returned from a spell with League One rivals MK Dons but after failing to attract first team interest, Pompey have snatched him up on a month’s loan to see him appear in contention for tonight’s squad. Another blow though for the Blues as also former United player and now Pompey skipper Brian Howard misses the battle through suspension.
Player to watch: Lee Williamson
Williamson will certainly be looking for an impressive performance tonight as he returns to Bramall Lane after his 3 season spell with the Blades. His is also in decent form which will hopefully see him perform well against his former employers. This also goes for a few others this evening as Jonny Ertl and Jon Harley have also spent time with the Yorkshire based club/
Match Facts & Stats
The Blades boast the better record against The Blues at the moment as there 33 wins from 61 meetings shows. Pompey have only bagged 18 wins against the Northerners and the most recent of them came in the last clash between the two just over a year ago when Pompey won 1-0 at Fratton, shortly before the opposition were relegated from the Championship.
I predict a 2-2 draw at Bramall Lane this evening as a positive air is amongst both sides. Either team could bag all 3 points of their game goes well but for most Pompey fans including myself, a point away from home against promotion contenders is a job well done.
Next Fixtures: Pompey vs Notts County
Pompey welcome Notts County to Fratton Park on Saturday in a first round FA Cup clash. Both sides are looking to prestige to the next level in this interesting encounter and Pompey will be looking for revenge after losing 3-0 away to County only a few weeks back.