Date:Friday December 27 2013
Boxing Day saw Pompey collect a first win of the Richie Barker era (the first win over anyone since I cannot remember!) when we did enough to beat Dagenham 1-0.
There is little time to savour that win, not that we should be standing back and admiring our handy work that much anyway at this stage, as we are back in action on Sunday when Northampton come to Fratton.
Some early team news is starting to filter through, so lets take a butchers...
Bondz N'Gala, having returned for the Bristol Rovers game after a spell on the bench, missed out altogether on Boxing Day as he was suspended. I would imagine he will be back in the squad but I reckon he might have to be content with a place among the subs again.
A first start under Barker, and a first start for us full stop since August, saw Romain Padovani score us the winner on Thursday; you would think that will see him keep his place in the starting XI?
Injuries, well 'knocks' meant that both Simon Ferry and Marcos Painter had to go off against Dagenham, they might find this game comes a little too soon, especially as we have another game on New Years Day then one more 3-days later so no chances will be taken...
Johnny Ertl came on for Ferry, but I am not sure if Ertl and Padovani would start together? Speaking of Ertl, I am really sad to hear that he was greeted by some boos when he cam on. Granted, he might not have had a great season, but who has for Pompey! Someone that offers as much passion and commitment as Ertl surely does not deserve such treatment.
Hamstring, thigh and knee injuries respectively for Shaun Cooper, Andy Barcham and Tom Craddock should see them forced to sit out the potentially massive game on Sunday.
Barker is definitely taking a look at a number of players, who knows 'if' we find ourselves in a good position he might even take a look at Ashley Harris at some stage! That is of course if he makes the bench again as he did on Boxing Day...
Our opponents on Sunday could have been fielding a familiar face to Pompey fans, but injury looks as though it will deny us the pleasure of giving Izale McLeod the sort of reaction that he deserves (and he would deserve such treatment that Ertl is wrongly getting!)
McLeod left us as for MK Dons a year ago, that move has hardly worked out and now he finds himself on loan with in their Boxing Day defeat.
Darren Carter is a former premier league performer, but those days seem well passed him. He will miss out due to suspension anyway so we do not have to worry about him either.
Others that will miss out for Northampton are Mathias Kouo-Doumbe, Ian Morris and Clive Platt, all injured just before Christmas and out or a month.
Whoever plays for us needs to show 100% commitment again, that and some desire could really see us collect a potentially season defining 3pts...
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Date:Friday December 27 2013
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