Pompey travel to Sixfields to take on table toppers Northampton Town tomorrow in a promotion six-pointer.
Christian Burgess is expected to be missing for a month after his ankle was damaged in last week's 4-0 win over Hartlepool and so Matt Clarke will deputise. Paul Jones has had keyhole surgery and will be absent for the forseeable future whilst Gary Roberts and Matt Tubbs are not yet match fit.
Ricky Holmes will have to be content with a place on the bench against his former club as Chris Wilder looks to name an unchanged side from the team that won 4-3 at Luton last week.
This could be a great match with both teams in excellent goalscoring form but also presents Pompey's toughest test of the season with the Cobblers taking 25 points available from their last 27 as they cemented their position at the top of League Two last week.
However, Paul Cook's men have also seemed to have found their rhythm thanks to the form of Caolan Lavery and Marc McNulty who have transformed the way this current Portsmouth side attack. Northampton may be top of the league but they do leak goals and players of their quality, supplied by an ever more fluid midfield should be able to find the net.
Keeping a clean sheet will be a problem as the hosts have a front four also capable of swamping defences and scoring goals from allsorts of situations. Clarke may be a natural replacement for Burgess but he has had hardly any game time with Webster and having Brian Murphy behind them won'[t fill fans with confidence. Holmes is also bound to play his part too when he inevitably steps off the bench during the game...
Ultimately, a draw here wouldn't be too bad as it keeps Northampton in touching distance even if ground is lost on the teams around Portsmouth. A defeat would mean a real tough ask to win the league but victory tomorrow would send a message to the rest of the division that Pompey are capable of becoming champions of League Two.
This is certainly the biggest game of the season. Can Paul Cook and his team pass the test?
Predicted Starting Line-Ups
GK: Adam SMITH
RB: Brendan MALONEY
CB: Ryan CRESSWELL
CB: Zander DIAMOND
LB: David BUCHANAN
DM: Joel BYROM
DM: John-Joe O'TOOLE
RM: Alfie POTTER
AM: Lawson D'ATH
LM: Nicky ADAMS
CF: Marc RICHARDS
GK: Brian MURPHY
RB: Ben DAVIES
CB: Matt CLARKE
CB: Adam WEBSTER
LB: Enda STEVENS
DM: Michael DOYLE
DM: Danny HOLLANDS
RM: Gareth EVANS
AM: Marc McNULTY
LM: Kyle BENNETT
CF: Caolan LAVERY
Last Time: Northampton Town 1 Portsmouth 0 (League Two - 03/03/2015)
Predictably, Ricky Holmes scored the only goal of this game as Pompey's good run of form under Andy Awford came to an end and more struggle was to follow.
Get this one on your "both teams to score" coupon as there should be a fair few goals in this one given the attacking talent of both teams as long as they go for it rather than cancel each other out. I'll plump for an entertaining draw.
Northampton Town 2 Portsmouth 2