Portsmouth vs AFC Wimbledon Preview

By Jim Bonner
Last updated : 15 November 2015

Pompey take on Wimbledon tomorrow live on Sky TV looking for their first win in four league games.

Team News

Kal Naismith has been loaned to Hartlepool until the new year and therefore won't be available whilst Matt Tubbs and Gary Roberts have been ruled out for at least a month with injuries that may require surgery.

Andy Barcham will miss playing against his former club with a knee injury but ex-Pompey captain Paul Robinson should start. Adebayo Akinfenwa is expected to play despite nursing a thigh injury.

The Match

This could be seen as a pivotal game in Pompey's season after recent results have meant that they are now in danger of slipping out of the promotion places after this weekend if they fail to beat the improving Dons.

Paul Cook is unlikely to change his formation despite a mediocre performance against Macclesfield last week which left him displeased. He may well make changes to that (winning) team for tomorrow but the back five will presumably stay the same.

It must be said that the decision to loan Naismith out is a strange one given that Roberts is missing and he potentially offers something different to the team, not to mention that some relatively experienced cover would be required should Evans or Bennett get injured or underperform. Cook surely won't be relying on young Ben Tollitt to pull a rabbit out of the hat if his team are chasing the game tomorrow.

With Tubbs out injured it will be interesting to see who gets the nod to play up front. Adam McGurk did a good job last week against Macclesfield but the feeling is that he may end up playing behind either Sheffield loanees Caolan Lavery or Marc McNulty. Of course, he could play them both up front but we all know that's not going to happen, don't we?

Tomorrrow we shall discover just how much Paul Cook's decision to let his former skipper go will come back to haunt him. Former players usually either play the game of their lives or end up making a crucial mistake against their former employers so let's hope it's the latter and he scores an own goal.

Along with Robinson, striker Lyle Taylor and winger Sean Rigg are the players that Pompey fans should keep their eyes on as they are capable of causing problems. Andy Barcham had a good start to his Dons career but unsurprisingly his knee injury has resurfaced and therefore he won't play.

Wimbledon will be difficult opposition despite their FA Cup exit at home to Forest Green Rovers last weekend. They have won their last three league games but also like to ship goals, having conceded three to Accrington and five to Morecambe in recent times.

This is a difficult match to call but hopefully the players will be boosted by being in front of the Sky cameras as they were when they beat Derby and Pompey can get back to winning ways. 

Predicted Starting Line-Ups

Pompey

GK: Brian MURPHY

RB: Ben DAVIES

CB: Christian BURGESS

CB: Adam WEBSTER

LB: Enda STEVENS

DM: Michael DOYLE

DM: Danny HOLLANDS

RM: Gareth EVANS

AM: Adam McGURK

LM: Kyle BENNETT

CF: Caolan LAVERY

Wimbledon

GK: Ben WILSON

RB: Barry FULLER

CB: Paul ROBINSON

CB: Karleigh OSBORNE

LB: Jon MEADES

RM: George FRANCOMB

CM: Danny BULMAN

CM: Jake REEVES

LM: Sean RIGG

CF: Lyle TAYLOR

CF: Adebayo AKINFENWA

Last Time: Portsmouth 0 AFC Wimbledon 2 (League Two - 26/12/2014)

This was a truly dreadful performance with the game over after the first fifteen minutes after Frankie Sutherland scored with a curler and then future Pompey player Matt Tubbs took advantage of some extremely sloppy defending to double the Dons' lead.

The misery was compounded when Dan Butler was sent off for a second bookable offence and boos rang round Fratton Park when the final whistle went, with many fans calling for Andy Awford's head.

My Prediction

I have no idea how this is going to go but there's the feeling that Paul Robinson is going to make an impact in one way or another.

Portsmouth 1 AFC Wimbledon 1

Portsmouth Match Reports

Sky Bet League One Sat 18th November 15:00

Portsmouth 1 - 0 Southend United

Last game - Match Centre


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