Pompey can profit in play-off shake-up

Pompey boss Kenny Jackett. Picture: Joe Pepler
Pompey boss Kenny Jackett. Picture: Joe Pepler
Pompey player Gareth Evans

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Pompey could propel themselves into the League One play-off places with victory over Doncaster Rovers tonight (7.45pm).

The Blues have won all three of their matches in October so far, with league successes over Gillingham and MK Dons moving them within a point of the top six.

Manager Kenny Jackett is beginning to see signs of progress in his reshaped team.

He is hopeful further indications will be evident at the Keepmoat Stadium this evening.

And while a spot in the top six is largely irrelevant at this point in the season, jumping into the play-off places would underline Pompey’s improvement.

Charlton Athletic and Oxford United are the two sides inside the top six Pompey can catch. And the pair lock horns at the Kassam Stadium.
Whatever the result, one of those clubs is almost certain to slip out of the play-off places come 9.30pm. But who will replace them?

Pompey are joined by Peterborough and Fleetwood on 20 points – just one behind Oxford and three adrift of the Addicks.

The Posh have struggled in recent weeks and travel to Southend United on the back of a three-game losing streak.

Fleetwood are on the road, too. They visit Scunthorpe after Devante Cole’s late equaliser rescued them a point against Rochdale on Saturday.

Scunthorpe, alongside Blackpool and Blackburn Rovers, are a point behind the trio in the chase for the top six.

The Iron will be eager to take advantage should Pompey and Peterborough get turned over on their travels.

Blackburn are likely to have other ideas, though, as they host rock-bottom Plymouth Argyle and already boast the best goal difference outside the play-off places.

Blackpool will aim to make home advantage count as they welcome Bury, who are likely to have Michael Smith leading their line again.

Elsewhere, Paul Cook’s pacesetters Wigan Athletic travel to struggling Gillingham.

Shrewsbury, who are level on points with the Latics, host Bristol Rovers and third-placed Bradford City entertain Oldham Athletic.

Rotherham hope to close the gap on the top three with victory at Wimbledon, while Rochdale host Northampton Town in the night’s other fixture.