Pompey v Carlisle: Gaffer for a day

Carl Baker. Picture: Joe Pepler
Carl Baker. Picture: Joe Pepler
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Graham Berry, aged 32, from Clanfield gives his preview for Pompey v Carlisle...

The signing of David Forde has been the missing link for this team and we go into the season with a lot of excitement – and expectation.

I feel we are stronger all over the park, while the players still here should now be used to Fratton Park, enabling them to win more games at home.

Last season we were obviously too reliant on Gary Roberts, if he was quiet we didn’t play well, but with Milan Lalkovic and Carl Baker there are so many options now.

I have also been impressed with Danny Rose alongside Michael Doyle, having seen them together in the friendly at the Hawks.

Mind you, there is so much hype among the fans at the moment I just hope it doesn’t blow up like it did against Oxford United for the opener in 2013-14!

Looking at the team to start against Carlisle tomorrow, I would make the one change to the Bristol City line-up.

I am concerned whether Michael Smith will get the goals we need, while there is the danger we might revert to a few long balls.

My choice would be Noel Hunt to be the lone striker, he is the right person to get into the box and score goals.

Watching him against the Hawks, he scored within a few minutes of coming on as substitute and was getting into the right positions.

You can see his experience is a few divisions above and our attacking midfielders are expected to create so many chances for a striker to take advantage of.

I like the fact every player signed so far is a permanent deal, so no dipping in and out of loans every month,

We have a settled team with four strikers to select from, all of them signed to the club, so we don’t have to worry about them returning to parent clubs.

Team selection:

David Forde

Drew Talbot

Christian Burgess

Jack Whatmough

Enda Stevens

Michael Doyle

Danny Rose

Carl Baker

Gary Roberts

Milan Lalkovic

Noel Hunt