Pompey v AFC Wimbledon: Insider

Jake Reeves
Jake Reeves
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Toby Porter of the South London Press gives his views on Pompey’s next opponents, AFC Wimbledon.

It will be a good test for AFC Wimbledon because you would expect Portsmouth to be one of the teams up there challenging for promotion this season.

But Wimbledon have nothing to fear.

They won at Fratton Park last season and did the double over Portsmouth.

With the Dons squad this season, I think promotion is definitely a possibility.

With this squad, they should be in the play-offs at least.

They have got a bit more depth than they have had in recent seasons.

They are a team with a lot of energy and have been playing pretty well.

They have been missing a bit of consistency but then won three straight League Two games before going out of the FA Cup to Forest Green last week.

That has happened a few times where they look like they are stringing some good results together and then will slip up.

But one of their major issues so far, is the number of goals they have conceded from set-pieces.

The manager Neal Ardley worked out that they would be in the automatic promotion places if they hadn’t conceded so many goals from set-pieces.

They have been working on it to try to tighten up but they have looked vulnerable a few times.

There are a couple of former Pompey players coming back but sadly only one of them is fit to play.

Pompey fans know all about Paul Robinson.

He is a leader and a well-liked character, who has definitely added something since he arrived in the summer.

He knows when to put his foot through the ball and when he’s got time to be steady.

He’s an ideal character to have with some younger players around him and knows the job inside out.

Unfortunately, Andy Barcham isn’t fit for this one as he comes back from a knee injury.

But in some ways, it’s better than it might have been.

There were a few fears that it was a really bad one when it first happened a month or so ago.

But thankfully, it wasn’t as serious as first thought so he should be back in another three weeks.

It’s a shame because he played really well in the first couple of months.

He’s got a lot of pace and gets up and down, although sometimes his final ball lets him down.

One to watch is Jake Reeves, who is a box-to-box midfielder and has done well this season.