Shrewsbury vs Portsmouth Preview

By Jim Bonner
Last updated : 22 December 2017

Pompey travel to New Meadow to take on high-flying Shrewsbury Town tomorrow looking for a win which would confirm themselves as promotion challengers this season.

Team News

Stuart O'Keefe looks set to miss tomorrow's match after coming off at half-time with a thigh injury last weekend. Kal Naismith's knee injury continues to keep him out but Ollie Hawkins is available again.

Shrews boss Paul Hurst has no new injury concerns with Junior Brown and Zak Jules long-term absentees.

The Match

Shrewsbury are League One's success story so far having managed to be in the top two positions in the division virtually all season when most people tipped them for relegation.

They're a hard working team which is greater than the sum of its parts. Hurst has managed to get the defence organised and somehow managed to turn what should be a generic box stadium into a fortress, with Shrewsbury only losing once at home all season.

However, prior to their 1-0 win over Blackpool last weekend they had stuttered and lost their place at the top of the league and they face a Pompey side whose defence has tightened significantly in recent weeks and always looks like being able to nick a goal at the other end of the field.

Kenny Jackett's team selection will likely be the same team that finished Saturday's win over Bury, although Brett Pitman could be moved back to play behind Hawkins if the Pompey manager decides to take a more direct approach to the game.

A draw away to one of the two sides with a better home record than Pompey wouldn't be a bad result and is certainly achievable when you consider that the other team with a better home record is Wigan, where Pompey salvaged a point.

However, if Pompey could snatch a victory in what should be a tight contest tomorrow then that would be the biggest statement of intent of the season. That win could be enough to take the Blues into the play-offs if Charlton fail to beat Blackpool.

And to be in 6th place with half the season gone would ensure a very happy Christmas for all Portsmouth fans.

Predicted Starting Line-Ups

Shrewsbury

GK: Dean HENDERSON

RB: James BOLTON

CB: Aristote NSIALA

CB: Omar BECKLES

LB: Mat SADLER

DM: Bryn MORRIS

RM: Shaun WHALLEY

CM: Jon NOLAN

CM: Abu OGOGO

LM: Alex RODMAN

CF: Carlton MORRIS

Pompey

GK: Luke McGEE

RB: Nathan THOMPSON

CB: Christian BURGESS

CB: Matt CLARKE

LB: Brandan HAUNSTRUP

DM: Danny ROSE

DM: Ben CLOSE

RM: Gareth EVANS

AM: Conor CHAPLIN

LM: Jamal LOWE

CF: Brett PITMAN

Last Time: Shrewsbury Town 2 Portsmouth 1 (League Two - 25/10/2014)

Jed Wallace put Pompey ahead with an early penalty but would ultimately fall to defeat thanks to long range strikes from James Wesolowski and Conor Goldson. Liam Lawrence cleared a Patrick Agyemang header off the line late on to ensure Andy Awford's men were beaten.

My Prediction

This probably won't be a great game to watch as both teams' greatest strength is their defence. One goal either way would probably enough to win but I shall sit on the fence with this one.

Shrewsbury Town 0 Portsmouth 0

Portsmouth Match Reports

Sky Bet League One Tue 17th April 18:45

Bradford City 3 - 1 Portsmouth

Last game - Match Centre


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