Porrtsmouth vs Shrewsbury Preview

Pompey take on another struggling side in Shrewsbury Town tomorrow as they look to maintain their 100% league record at Fratton Park.

Team News

Kenny Jackett has declared that Jack Whatmough and Anton Walkes haven't recovered from injuries sustained against Plymouth but Oli Hawkins may be available after limping off last Saturday. Ronan Curtis is unavailable as he is on Ireland U-21 duty.

James Bolton and Abo Eisa will be missing for Shrewsbury but Josh Emmanuel could make his debut having signed on loan from Ipswich. One of Shrewsbury's goalkeepers was also injured in training but John Askey refuses to name whether it is Steve Arnold or Joel Coleman.

The Match

Tomorrow's game is likely going to be a test of Pompey's squad depth more than anything as Kenny Jackett could have to make as many as four enforced changes to the starting eleven that smashed Plymouth last weekend.

Whilst Nathan Thompson and Christian Burgess should slot in for Walkes and Whatmough respectively, choosing replacements for Curtis and Hawkins (provided he doesn't make it) will be more difficult.

You would think David Wheeler and Brett Pitman might be the favourites as they scored in the midweek Couldn'tcareless Trophy match but Andre Green and Joe Mason also featured and would have been brought in on loan to play.

Of course, this could all be smoke and mirrors from Jackett and the trio of "injured" players could all be named in the starting line-up tomorrow!

Whoever is picked will be expected to put the struggling Shrews to the sword. Unsurprisingly they haven't won a match since manager Paul Hurst left for Ipswich and an exodus of their best players followed. Shaun Whalley and Alex Gilliead are arguably Town's biggest threats on the wing.

Hopefully Pompey can win this match in a straightforward manner but Shrewsbury's defeats have all been narrow so this could be one of those matches where the opposition parks the bus.

Victory would set us up nicely for next weekend's trip to Peterborough...

Predicted Starting Line-Ups

Pompey

GK: Craig MacGILLIVRAY

RB: Nathan THOMPSON

CB: Christian BURGESS

CB: Matt CLARKE

LB: Lee BROWN

CM: Tom NAYLOR

CM: Ben THOMPSON

CM: Gareth EVANS

RWF: Andre GREEN

LWF: Jamal LOWE

CF: Oli HAWKINS

Shrewsbury

GK: Joel COLEMAN

RB: Ryan SEARS

CB: Luke WATERFALL

CB: Mat SADLER

LB: Omar BECKLES

RM: Shaun WHALLEY

CM: Anthony GRANT

CM: Josh LAURENT

CM: Oliver NORWOOD

LM: Alex GILLIEAD

CF: Lee ANGOL

Last Time: Portsmouth 0 Shrewsbury Town 1 (League One - 27/01/2018)

With Shrewsbury's number one keeper injured, backup Craig MacGillivray came in and produced a man-of-the-match performance against his future club as James Bolton scored an early goal and referee David Coote ignored a blatant handball in the box from Shaun Whalley which meant Town left the south coast with all three points.

My Prediction

It's only right to expect a tougher game than last week even though the opposition are winless all season. They may have a hoodoo sign over Pompey and Kenny Jackett's squad may be weakened but they should still have enough to get the job done.

Portsmouth 2 Shrewsbury Town 0