Date: 17th May 2009 at 8:47pm
Written by:

It is the final home game of the season and everybody connected with Portsmouth FC can breathe a huge sigh of relief that we are safe. Sunderland however are not. The Black Cats come to Fratton Park knowing that only a win can guarantee their safety and secure a third successive Premier League season ahead of Sunday’s final round of matches

Vital Quotes:

Paul Hart, with the help of Brian Kidd, Hull, West Brom, Middlesboro & Newcastle has done the job he was asked to do and kept Pompey in the Premiership. Tactics and (one) formation have been criticised along the way but some may claim he has now been vindicated, in some respects he has but in others he has not. We should have never have been the position in the first place, Tony Adams or not!

By quoting “It won’t change the way we prepare for Monday’s game” in response to whether we would be safe by kick-off time we can surely expect to see a 4-5-1 formation once again – Oh deep joy!
Will I be glad when this season is over..

Pompey have not scored in over six hours since ‘The Kings’ winner at home to Bolton on 18 April. Sunderland have not scored since Djibril Cisse’s winner against Hull at the Stadium of Plight on the same day.
Despite this Black Cats boss Ricky Sbragia feels ‘it will be 9-9 the way things are going, if we get our shooting boots on and they do’ He is assuming we can find ours!

Pompey Team News:

Armand Traore has recovered from a groin problem and could make his first appearance since Paul Hart took charge in February, but I doubt it. No news on whether Nuge is fit but let’s hope so, but if not we could see JP start for the first time since his injury or if we deploy a 442 formation we might see both!
Linvoy is fit and could make an appearance.

Player to watch: Just a few:

Hermann – It could be the last time we see him play for Pompey at Fratton Park
Johnson – It could be the last time we see him play for Pompey at Fratton Park
Campbell – It could be the last time we see him play for Pompey at Fratton Park
Distin – It could be the last time we see him play for Pompey at Fratton Park
Pennant – It could be the last time we see him play for Pompey at Fratton Park
Crouch – It could be the last time we see him play for Pompey at Fratton Park
Traore – It could be the last time we see him play for Pompey at Fratton Park
Davis – It could be the last time we see him play for Pompey at Fratton Park
Primus – It could be the last time we see him play for Pompey at Fratton Park
Kanu – It could be the last time we see him play for Pompey at Fratton Park

Mackems Team News:

Full-back George McCartney could return to the squad after missing six games with a calf injury and Kenwyne Jones and Kieran Richardson and Teemu Tainio are expected to shake off knocks but Craig Gordon and Nyron Nosworthy are definitely out

Player to watch: Djibril Sissy & Kenwyne Jonah:

The Frenchman with the daft hair-cut is Sunderlands top Premier League scorer with 10 goals whereas the Trinidad & Tobago striker who used to play for another team in red and white stripes is just bound to score.

Match Facts & Stats

Pompey are looking for a fifth victory in six Premier League matches against Sunderland and a third in a row at Fratton Park, to keep their 100% home Premier League record against the Wearsiders intact.
Sunderland have not won a ‘top-flight’ match at Fratton in 51 years (April 1958), but beat us 4-1 in November 1997 in the Championship.
Last season – Defoe scored from the spot to give us a 1-0 victory

Ref Watch:

Paul Morling

Match Prediction:

A packed Fratton Park, Pompey safe, Sunderland going for it – Gotta be 0-0
Hedge a bet here.

Next Fixtures:

Final game of the season – Wigan RFC