Portsmouth vs Crewe Preview

By Jim Bonner
Last updated : 03 March 2017

Pompey take on struggling Crewe Alexandra tomorrow knowing a win will either take them into the top three or close the gap on second-placed Plymouth to just three points.

Team News

Amine Linganzi should be fit to start tomorrow's match despite coming off with a groin strain against Morecambe. Stanley Abroah may take his place on the bench for the first time this season.

Danny Hollands won't be facing his former club due to a leg injury whilst star striker Chris Dagnall is suspended for the Railwaymen.

The Match

Tomorrow's match is a perfect fixture to lift the spirits following a disappointing result, if not performance, against Morecambe on Tuesday night.

Crewe currently sit 20th in League Two, have only won twice in the calendar year, not won away from home in ten games and were hammered 4-0 by Hartlepool on Tuesday night. Pompey fans know how important Hollands can be when holding a midfield together and so without him, Paul Cook's men should be able to create plenty of opportunities tomorrow.

However, it's taking them that has been the problem for Pompey all season. Eoin Doyle hasn't been the saviour many thought he would be and Conor Chaplin needs more game time to really make his mark. The players behind the striker are certainly doing their bit recently, but we need to see more from the man (or men) leading the line.

There's so much pressure going into this game simply because of the reward of winning it. At worst, Pompey will find themselves still two points behind Carlisle (with a game in hand) but only three behind Plymouth as the two teams meet tomorrow. It's an opportunity that simply cannot be passed up and if Pompey do fail to win, then the same old questions that have plagued Paul Cook all season will be asked once again.

Hopefully Tuesday night's profligacy will be forgotten about and Pompey can make a statement of intent going into the final stretch of the season.

Predicted Starting Line-Ups

Pompey

GK: David FORDE

RB: Gareth EVANS

CB: Christian BURGESS

CB: Matt CLARKE

LB: Enda STEVENS

DM: Michael DOYLE

DM: Amine LINGANZI

RM: Carl BAKER

AM: Gary ROBERTS

LM: Kyle BENNETT

CF: Eoin DOYLE

Crewe

GK: Ben GARRATT

RB: Perry NG

CB: Ben NUGENT

CB: Harry DAVIS

LB: Zoumana BAKAYOGO

RM: Callum AINLEY

CM: Oliver TURTON

CM: James JONES

CM: George COOPER

LM: Alex KIWOMYA

CF: Jordan BOWERY

Last Time: Portsmouth 2 Crewe Alexandra 0 (League One - 13/10/2012)

A goal from Wes Thomas and a penalty from Izale McLeod was enough to see off the Railwaymen on this occasion.

My Prediction

Whilst there's always a sense that Pompey will let you down when it really matters, Crewe are not in a good way on or off the pitch and although they'll play to frustrate, this should be a home win.

Portsmouth 2 Crewe Alexandra 0 

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