Chix's Chatter - '3 from 3' - Set One
In a bid to retain Pompey's premiership status Chix assesses the first set of '3 from 3'.
Yesterday I introduced you all to Chix's '3 from 3'. My magical mathematical system (click here) that will ensure Pompey beat the drop and retain their Premiership status.
So without further ado here is my take on where I think we should collect our first set of three points - Remember I am targeting a 'minimum' of three points from three games, but obviously I'm not gonna be upset if I'm wrong and we achieve more !
The first 'set of three' plays out within the first eight days of the new season - My take (and prediction) for each game follows.
Well, if there is a team whose recent fortunes have changed as much as ours it must be Fulham's - Theirs however seem to have headed in the opposite direction!
Was it really less than 18 months ago that we were planning a trip to Wembley and signing about a European tour whilst The Cottagers were clinging on to Premiership survival?
For a while at least it seemed that Kanu's Wembley winner and Danny Murphy's Fratton header were milestones on each clubs road to better things, well at least it turned out OK for one team eh! Anyway..
So the season opener sees 'Roy (once) of The Rovers' bring his hard working team to Fratton Park in search of a win. The question is will he get it or will Pompey notch up their first point(s) of the new campaign?
Fulham of course have already started their season and two 3-0 victories over FK Vetra in the Europa League will have them brimming with confidence, but I've a feeling it'll be dented confidence come the final whistle as I think Pompey's players know we are in a scrap this season and will battle from the first minute to the last.
We'll need to keep Murphy quiet in the middle of the park and keep an eye on Johnson and Zamora up front but I'm confident that Diop and Mullins (or Hughes) can provide adequate cover to enable our Back Four and Jamo to keep a 'clean sheet', but the big question is, can we score?
My question about scoring has less to do with our ability in front of goal and more to do with Fulham's miserly defence. The Cottagers defensive record was only bettered by the top three last season and when marshalled by the superb Hangeland it is pretty hard to break down. That said, I reckon a rousing, foot-stamping, hand-clapping Fratton crowd will spur the lads on and we will find a goal from somewhere. Step forward Niko Kranjcar.
Chix's prediction: Home win and three points towards my '3 from 3'
On Wednesday Pompey travel to Birmingham who despite having had a very tight defence last season will probably have been on the end of 'Welcome back to the Premiership' mauling by Manchester United a few days earlier.
The newly promoted Blues will be looking to this match, their first home game of the new campaign, to get at least some points on the board and I think they will achieve it.
Like Fulham, Birmingham built their success on a solid defence last season and had the best 'GA' column in The Championship, impressively conceding the same amount as Fulham but by playing eight games more!
Paul Hart's Pompey need to take every point they can muster this season and I think, irrespective of the opposition 'The Gaffer' will deploy a safety first attitude to away games so to return to Fratton from anywhere with a point this season will be seen as an achievement.
Personally I've never forgiven Birmingham for that 5-0 drubbing a few season ago so would really like Pompey to 'go at them' but realistically with neither team wanting to lose, this game only has one outcome and I think Birmingham might have to wait until their home game with Stoke four days later to record their first win back in the premiership
Chix's prediction: Draw and a bonus point in my '3 from 3'
Only a fool would predict Pompey to get a point (or more) at The Emirates yet the more I look at this fixture the more I can see us getting one.
In isolation Arsenal v Pompey looks like a no-brainer to predict, but a closer look shows that the Pompey game is probably more of an inconvenience than a home banker to Arsene Wenger and his men.
The Gunners start the season with a toughie away to Everton, then three days later travel to Celtic for the first leg of the 'big-money' final qualifying round of the Champions League. Pompey then provide the filling between the European legs which is topped off by a visit to Old Trafford the following Saturday.
With Arsenal having so many important games on the bounce, this early season visit to North London might just prove to be a blessing in disguise, but then again as we found out last season even the younger Gunners can give us a lesson or two.
Given this will be the season curtain raiser at The Emirates and with Arsenal having three of their first four premiership games away from home (the two mentioned and Manchester City !) can we realistically believe that Mr Wenger will not single out this game as a 'must win' morale boost
If you think I am going to predict that Pompey will walk away from The Emirates with anything more than their kit bags your Arshavin a laugh!
Chix's prediction: Home win - No points towards my '3 from 3'
So there you have it, my first '3 from 3' predictions - Let's hope I'm right eh! and Pompey get off to the start we need to ensure we keep the 'dogs of relegation' from Fratton Parks door. But remember, it's the points that are important not necessarily how we get them.
Chix's '3 from 3' stats
Available 9 Predicted 4 Required 3 Total to date ?
So do you agree with me ?
How do you think we can obtain a minimum of three points from these three games?
Perhaps you think we will get more or less than the 3 needed or 4 I've predicted.
Post your thoughts below
Oh and don't forget the Vital Pompey Prediction League
Here are the links for Fulham - Birmingham - Arsenal
(Score and Pompey scorers required).