Portsmouth vs Swindon Town Preview
By Jim Bonner
Updated Monday, 17th September 2012
Can Pompey bounce back from the Walsall disappointment?
Pompey look to win their first home league game of the season at the fourth time of asking when Swindon Town visit tomorrow night.
Lubor Michalik may be given his Pompey debut whilst Jordan Obita returns from a three match ban and will hope to start the game.
Matt Ritchie is set to play against the team he supports and the club where he began his career before being sold to Swindon last year.
The defeat to Walsall seems to have finally brought Pompey fans back down to earth, if ever they needed it. Gone are the positive chats in the pub about having a "decent season" - most supporters would be delighted with a 20th place finish now.
Effectively on -5 points, there is already a significant gap opening up between where Pompey are effectively in the League One table (adrift at the bottom) to safety.
Another defeat to the League Two Champions tomorrow night and some fans will have given up already, and Paolo Di Canio's men should be a tough nut to crack.
If there is any hope to be had going into this game it should be noted that Swindon haven't won away from home yet and have conceded six goals in three games.
There will be plenty of talk about Gospot lad Matt Ritchie, who was deemed not good enough to play for Portsmouth by Steve Cotterill last year and then went on to be crowned League Two's best player last season. Sods law states that he is nailed on to score against us, so get your money on it.
Whether Pompey can get the ball to their strikers without kicking it fifty feet in the air so they actually have a fair chance of scoring and winning the game for us is another matter.
Perhaps if the ball is kept on the floor and moved forward far more quickly than against Walsall then we'll create some chances against a leaky defence.
I just hope Pompey's isn't even more leaky...
Predicted Starting Line-Ups
GK: Mikkel ANDERSEN
RB: Mustapha DUMBUYA
CB: Darel RUSSELL
CB: Josh THOMPSON
LB: Jon HARLEY
RM: Lee WILLIAMSON
CM: Liam WALKER
CM: Brian HOWARD
LM: Jack COMPTON
CF: Izale McLEOD
CF: Luke RODGERS
GK: Wes FODERINGHAM
RB: Joe DEVERA
CB: Alan McCORMACK
CB: Darren WARD
LB: Jay McEVELEY
RM: Matt RITCHIE
CM: Simon FERRY
CM: Tommy MILLER
LM: Paul BENSON
CF: Luke ROONEY
CF: Andy WILLIAMS
Last Time: Portsmouth 4 Swindon Town 1 (Division One - 25/03/2000)
Lee Bradbury scored a hat-trick for Pompey with Adrian Whitbread getting the other in a comprehensive win for the Blues. Gray scored a consolation for the visitors who finished bottom of the league that season, with Pompey finishing 18th.
Swindon are a solid side and Pompey are in a bit of turmoil at the moment, which usually means we'll pull a result out the bag when nobody expects it.
Portsmouth 2 Swindon Town 1