Pompey v Bristol City
Two teams at the wrong end of the table do battle again; similarities to the game on Friday can be drawn although the same outcome, at least as the scoreline goes anyway, 'probably', is unlikely, right?
That first league win of the season, a first league win for what seems an age, is - it has to be surely? - a monkey off our back although it is vital that we build on this and a defeat would undo all that good work...
I think expecting a victory, even though in many ways we almost should when it comes to home games - at least expect not to lose, is a bit much but a certain level of expectancy would only be natural. Building on that fantastic win on Friday with another tonight will not only help the confidence even more and see us climb the table once again it will start to put a few more bricks up as 'Fortress Fratton' is rebuilt!
Pompey Team News:
Richard Hughes - suspension - is out again. As harsh as it sounds I am not convinced that this is a bad thing.
Hayden Mullins is 'doubtful' though as he picked up an injury on Friday. Matt Ritchie - concussion - missed Friday but will hopefully be back.
Player to watch: John Utaka
Plenty of people could have been selected but I, and it even surprised me when his name popped into my head, have gone for Utaka.
He has started to cause defenders trouble and his pace, and lets face it - when he wants - ability 'should' be doing this at this level, in fact most levels. He has also started taking more interest in his defensive duties and if we get from him what we did against Sheffield United and Leicester we 'might' even see him get a goal that I think he deserves.
Bristol City Team News:
Steven Caulker signed on loan from Spurs this week and could come straight in to make his debut.
Player to watch: David James
There is no way that any other player would have been selected - Jamo is an icon and we get the chance to say 'goodbye' to him when we could not previously, although I of course hope that we crack a few past him and as much as I would not wish it on him if he dropped a clanger then you have to take what you can get!
Match Facts & Stats
In 48 previous meetings in total Bristol City hold a 20-12 lead, with 16 draws. At Fratton its tied 7-7 lead with 10 draws.
The last meeting came in the FA cup the other year, we were held to a draw at Fratton but won the replay where we put in some of the best counter attacking play that I think I have ever seen us produce.
We last met in the league in the old 1st division, now championship of course, in the 1998/99 season at Fratton when we lost 1-0 - you have to go back to an old 2nd division meeting in the 1991/92 season to find our last league win against them, this was at Fratton when we won 1-0.
We have a chance to really get our season up and running, but will we?
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