Portsmouth vs Cambridge United Preview

By Jim Bonner
Last updated : 21 April 2017

Fratton Park will be home to a full house of happy Pompey fans watching their promotion winners take on Cambridge United, who also hope to be a League One club next season.

Team News

Paul Cook has virtually confirmed that Nicke Kabamba and Stanley Aborah will start tomorrow's match and Jamal Lowe may also begin the match after scoring the promotion winning goals at Meadow Lane. Matt Clarke and Danny Rose have recovered from the knocks that kept them out of the Notts County game and should return.

Barry Corr is once again missing for the U's whilst ex-Pompey duo James Dunne and Adam McGurk may only be on the bench for Shaun Derry's side.

The Match

Tomorrow should be an absolutely brilliant occasion for all of the Pompey fans after Monday's promotion as we can all sit back, relax and enjoy the final three games of the season where the players can play without the pressure which has shackled them at times this season.

Whilst Cook has mentioned rewarding the players with a holiday to Marbella, hopefully they'll remain focused for remaining trio of matches as technically the League Two title (or even the prize of finishing above Plymouth) is still on the cards. Therefore, everyone has to remain professional ahead of what should be a difficult contest.

The U's have a decent away record this season, winning ten matches. This is down to some stout defending and being able to nick a goal from a set-piece. However, without Barry Corr, they are blunt up front and will probably struggle to score against the best defence in the division.

As for the team Cook picks tomorrow, it'll be good to see what Aborah can do and if Kabamba looks like he can cut it in the Football League. Hopefully Lowe starts to get the reception he deserves for his heroics on Monday whilst it'll be good to see Conor Chaplin start a game for a change.

He has faded as the second half of the season has progressed and hasn't scored since his screamer at Barnet. He is due a goal but he can only score if he's on the pitch, and maybe he'll play behind Kabamba as he has shown promise playing in the role just behind the striker in the past.

Cambridge are the team under pressure, Pompey should be celebrating and so tomorrow could be another extremely enjoyable day for the supporters who have suffered for so long.

Predicted Starting Line-Ups

Pompey

GK: David FORDE

RB: Gareth EVANS

CB: Christian BURGESS

CB: Matt CLARKE

LB: Enda STEVENS

DM: Michael DOYLE

DM: Danny ROSE

RM: Jamal LOWE

AM: Kal NAISMITH

LM: Kyle BENNETT

CF: Nicke KABAMBA

Cambridge

GK: Will NORRIS

RB: Brad HALLIDAY

CB: Leon LEGGE

CB: Greg TAYLOR

LB: Jake CARROLL

DM: James DUNNE

RM: Piero MINGOIA

CM: Luke BERRY

CM: George MARIS

LM: Harrison DUNK

CF: Uche IKPEAZU 

Last Time: Portsmouth 2 Cambridge United 1 (League Two - 27/02/2016)

Marc McNulty rifled the ball home to give Pompey the lead at the end of a scrappy first half and Adam Webster made sure of the points when he hooked the ball in after Bennett had smashed the crossbar with a shot. Luke Berry scored in the 90th minute but it was too little, too late for the U's.

My Prediction

Let's be honest, Cook may have said all the right things pre-match but this could be a case of "After the Lord Mayor's Show" a la 2003 when Pompey were thrashed by Ipswich after winning promotion. However, the atmopshere will be electric, the players will be able to express themselves and that might not be something Cambridge can deal with.

Portsmouth 3 Cambridge United 0

Portsmouth Match Reports

Sky Bet League One Sat 18th November 15:00

Portsmouth 1 - 0 Southend United

Last game - Match Centre


Trending on the boards