Shrewsbury vs Portsmouth Preview

By Jim Bonner
Last updated : 24 October 2014

Portsmouth will be looking to build on their midweek win over Stevenage by taking a result from Greenhous Meadow tomorrow.

Team News

Jack Whatmough could return to the Pompey squad but it's unlikely he'll feature whilst there are no new injury concerns for Andy Awford. Jack Maloney has joined Poole Town on a month's loan whilst Michael Drennan has returned to Aston Villa.

Shrews striker Andy Mangan is fit again after a knee injury but manager Micky Mellon could name an unchanged team which would see former Portsmouth captain Liam Lawrence miss out.

The Match

Pompey may have got back to winning ways on Tuesday but tomorrow's match should be much tougher. Shrewsbury have won six and drawn one of their league matches at Greenhous Meadow this season and are yet to suffer defeat there having hammered Bury 5-0 on Tuesday.

In contrast Pompey have only scored twice away from home in the league all season and have only picked up six points on their travels. Andy Awford has been racking his brains to try and work out why his team have struggled on the road but cannot come up with an answer.

He will likely stick to the same team that beat Stevenage and the same formation, too. Craig Westcarr may be dropped and if Whatmough is fit then he may replace Ben Chorley at centre back too. Hopefully he will play his part because the heart of Pompey's defence is weak due its lack of pace whilst the back four do lose concentration too much.

That lack of concentration and organisation from set-pieces could be a problem given some of the players in the Shrewsbury side. Pompey fans may remember James Collins who scored four for Swindon on New Year's Day 2013 whilst Jean-Louis Akpa Akpro bagged a hat-trick against Bury on Tuesday.

Liam Lawrence also needs no introduction to the Portsmouth fans and at the age of 32 he still has the ability to whip in a decent cross, that's if he plays which isn't certain.

Whilst the home side are being talked up it should be said that Pompey possess players who can hurt them, too. Miles Storey looks rejuvenated and will want to score against the club he was previously on loan with whilst if Jed Wallace has a good day then he is always capable of scoring.

However, we need to see more from the likes of Westcarr whilst Danny Hollands and Ricky Holmes are still yet to find the the net this season. Tomorrow would be an ideal time to alter that statistic.

This is probably the toughest fixture in League Two so if Pompey could get a result then it would prove that our season is back on track.

Predicted Starting Line-Ups

Shrewsbury

GK: Jason LEUTWILER

RB: Jermaine GRANDISON

CB: Connor GOLDSON

CB: Nathaniel KNIGHT-PERCIVAL

LB: Mickey DEMETRIOU

RM: Liam LAWRENCE

CM: Ryan WOODS

CM: James WESOLOWSKI

LM: Bobby GRANT

CF: James COLLINS

CF: Jean-Louis AKPA AKPRO

Pompey

GK: Paul JONES

RB: Joe DEVERA

CB: Ben CHORLEY

CB: Paul ROBINSON

LB: Nicky SHOREY

RM: Jed WALLACE

CM: Danny HOLLANDS

CM: James DUNNE

LM: Ricky HOLMES

CF: Miles STOREY

CF: Craig WESTCARR

Last Time: Shrewsbury Town 3 Portsmouth 2 (League One - 27/04/2013)

The final day of the 2012/2013 season saw already relegated Pompey go 3-0 down due to goals from Connor Goldson, Joe Jacobson and Akwasi Asante but Ashley Harris pulled one back after Chris Weale spilled a hot and Patrick Agyemang tapped in a second goal but there was to be no equaliser for Pompey who went down fighting in the end.

My Prediction

Pompey may have won on Tuesday but there is still much improvement required to get a result tomorrow and given the poor away record and the opposition's form, it's unlikely that fortunes away from Fratton Park will improve just yet.

Shrewsbury Town 2 Portsmouth 0

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