Portsmouth vs Watford Preview

By Jim Bonner
Last updated : 15 October 2010
High flying Watford visit Fratton Park for what should be an entertaining game between two sides who have been scoring goals for fun recently.

Team News

Liam Lawrence has been given the green light to play against Watford after recovering from a knock received on international duty. John Utaka should also feature despite missing a training session because of a hamstring strain.

Steve Cotterill is pondering bringing back Hermann Hreidarsson into the squad though admits he may not be ready yet. The Icelandic defender is also still to receive clearance from the Football League to play.

Watford boss Malky Mackay is likely to stick with the same side that won at Sheffield United before the international break as Marvin Sordell and Ross Jenkins have had time to recover from their injuries.

The Match

Yet again, all the pre-match talk will be about Pompey's current situation off the pitch and Andrew Andronikou's claims today that the club could "go out of business" if Balram Chainrai walks away.

However, Portsmouth FC has now confirmed that an agreement "in principle" has been reached between the club, Pompey's "prospective new owners" and the Football League over the four requirements needed to come out of administration.

The documentation is now being worked on to ensure these requirements are fulfilled and that the transfer of the "golden share" will take place, allowing Pompey to be bought out of administration.

So, in theory, that's good news and hopefully matters on the pitch will also continue improving and Pompey can pick up another three points tomorrow to climb away from the relegation zone.

However, beating Watford will be no easy task as they're currently unbeaten away from home, winning four out of five games on the road which includes a 6-1 thrashing of Millwall at The Den.

Much of Watford's success can be attributed to Danny Graham who has bagged eight goals already this season and should pose Mokoena and Rocha a problem or two. Marvin Sordell has also chipped in with his fair share of goals too and will be one to watch.

Despite Watford's good form I think we can inflict their first away defeat of the season tomorrow. We've scored eleven goals in three games and have some in-form players in Lawrence, Nugent and Utaka who can pose any Championship defence problems.

Our own problems at the back still worry me though as we've still only kept one clean sheet all season. So expect the visiting fans to be cheering on at least one occasion.

We can outscore them though, so this should be a cracking game of football.

Predicted Starting Line-Ups

Pompey

GK: Jamie ASHDOWN

RB: Joel WARD
CB: Aaron MOKOENA
CB: Ricardo ROCHA
LB: Carl DICKINSON

RM: Liam LAWRENCE
CM: Hayden MULLINS
CM: Michael BROWN
LM: John UTAKA

CF: David NUGENT
CF: Dave KITSON

Watford

GK: Scott LOACH

RB: Lloyd DOYLEY
CB: Martin TAYLOR
CB: Adrian MARIAPPA
LB: Andrew TAYLOR

RM: Will BUCKLEY
CM: Jordan MUTCH
CM: John EUSTACE
LM: Don COWIE

CF: Danny GRAHAM
CF: Marvin SORDELL

Last Time: Portsmouth 2 Watford 1 (Premier League - 18/11/2006)

Jay DeMerit gave the Hornets the lead after heading the ball past the onrushing David James from a corner but Pompey levelled right before half-time after Kanu smashed the ball into the roof of the net from a yard after Ben Foster had saved his initial shot.

It looked like Pompey would fail to beat the league's bottom club but were awarded a controversial penalty at the death when Kanu fell over after contact from DeMerit. Lomana LuaLua scored the penalty to the relief of the home crowd.

My Prediction

Pompey to edge an entertaining game of many chances.

Portsmouth 3 Watford 2

Portsmouth Match Reports


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