Pompey prepare for title-winner’s return

Former Pompey front man Eoin Doyle
Former Pompey front man Eoin Doyle
Pompey fans enjoyed a 2-1 win on their last visit to the Memorial Stadium. Picture: Joe Pepler

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Pompey will lock horns with a member of their League Two title-winning squad tomorrow.

And Christian Burgess has pledged to ensure there will be no triumphant Fratton Park return.

Eoin Doyle is expected to lead the Oldham line for their south-coast trip – and he’s presently in form.

The striker netted twice in 12 appearances during a loan spell with Blues in the second half of last season.

However, his involvement was curtailed through a groin injury, ruling him out of the final seven fixtures of the campaign.

Irrespective of Doyle’s absence, Pompey marched to the claim the League Two title in style on the final day of the campaign.

Now the 29-year-old has linked up at Boundary Park, during another loan spell from Preston.

And with four goals in five games, Burgess must shackle his former team-mate.

‘Eoin’s dangerous, he’s hit that form as well,’ said the central defender.

‘I watched the highlights of their game against Peterborough on Tuesday night when he scored twice and he’ll have us on our toes.

‘He is sharp, works hard and is very clever with his movement, we will have to be careful of him.

‘You come up against a lot of good strikers in this league, there are probably more players that can really hurt you, as opposed to League Two. It’s about making those decisions correctly because when you make mistakes you are more likely to be hurt.

‘We saw Eoin every day in training and know what he is capable of, he won’t give you time on the ball either.

‘He’s a lovely bloke, a really, really nice guy, and hopefully he will have a quiet day tomorrow.’

Doyle’s Pompey spell didn’t come without criticism, with only two goals following his January arrival.

Nonetheless, his work-rate could never be questioned, particularly considering he was asked to serve as a lone striker.

The former Chesterfield man was present at Meadow Lane when the Blues sealed promotion to League One, albeit as an injured spectator.

Still, he played a part during that period, with goals in victories over Blackpool and Colchester.

Burgess added: ‘You have to acknowledge the games Eoin played for us last season and impact he had.

‘He will have a part in the club’s history and credit to him – he showed a great work ethic.’

– NEIL ALLEN