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Notts County vs Portsmouth Preview
Published : 21 Sep 2012 20:53:47
Can Pompey stop the rot?
Pompey travel to Meadow Lane looking to avoid a third straight League One defeat.
Luke Rodgers will be looking to get back into the starting line-up against his former club whilst Josh Thompson will also hope for a recall after dropping to the bench against Swindon.
Magpies midfielder Jeff Hughes may start the game having come off the bench as a substitute in County's 1-1 draw with MK Dons. Andre Boucaud is suspended.
For the first time, Pompey fans publicly showed some displeasure with the way Michael Appleton manages his team as Swindon came to Fratton Park and dominated the majority of the match.
Appy came under fire for his tactics and reluctance to use any substitutes and it seemed like he was the only one who thought that his side deserved anything from the game on Tuesday night.
Fans are slowly beginning to turn against the manager as they grow ever impatient with the shenanigans going on off the pitch with six different bidders now in for Portsmouth Football Club.
This is why a result at Meadow Lane tomorrow is so important. Even a draw will be seen as a positive given how strongly Notts have started the season but the performance is the main concern.
Too many times we have seen the defence play the ball sideways to each other, only to get closed down and to hoof the ball to the forwards who cannot win headers or hold the ball up.
And when the ball is played into midfield, our players constantly give the ball away or just don't know what to do with it. What happened to the fast tempo, attacking football we saw in the first two games of the season?
I'd like to see Liam Walker return to the side and provide some quality passes to the strikers, and maybe have Darel Russell play the holding role and give the slow, lumbering centre backs some protection.
Whatever team plays, Keith Curle's men will be very difficult opposition and players such as Jamal Campbell-Ryce, Francois Zoko and Yoann Arquin could be a nightmare for Pompey's porous backline.
Realistically, the only hope we've got of getting a result is if Rodgers can score against his former club and the blundering Bartosz "Scummer" Bialkowski makes a mistake or two.
But I, and I suspect many others, will be expecting a miserable trip back from Nottingham tomorrow.
Predicted Starting Line-Ups
GK: Bartosz BIALKOWSKI
RB: Julian KELLY
CB: Gary LIDDLE
CB: Dean LEACOCK
LB: Carl REGAN
RM: Jamal CAMPBELL-RYCE
CM: Alan JUDGE
CM: Neal BISHOP
CM: Joss LABADIE
LM: Francois ZOKO
CF: Yoann ARQUIN
GK: Mikkel ANDERSEN
RB: Mustapha DUMBUYA
CB: Gabor GYEPES
CB: Lubor MICHALIK
LB: Jon HARLEY
RM: Lee WILLIAMSON
CM: Darel RUSSELL
CM: Brian HOWARD
LM: Jack COMPTON
CF: Izale McLEOD
CF: Luke RODGERS
Last Time: Notts County 0 Portsmouth 1 (Division One - 17/12/1994)
Paul Wood scored the only goal of the game as Jim Smith's men completed the double over the Magpies who would go on to be relegated at the end of the season.
Given the form of both sides, I see nothing but another defeat for Pompey.
Notts County 3 Portsmouth 1