Pompey v Plymouth: Gaffer For A Day

Matt Clarke. Picture: Joe Pepler
Matt Clarke. Picture: Joe Pepler
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Graham Berry, 32, from Clanfield, gives his verdict on the League Two play-off first leg at Fratton Park.

How we lost at home to Plymouth last month I will never know, so I don’t think we have anything to fear.

My only concern is we seem to freeze at home if it is a big game – and tonight definitely qualifies as one of those.

We have had leads at home and chucked them away, like that Plymouth game, and I’m hoping we can keep our nerve.

I would be happy if we kept it tight, the key is not losing your home tie in the play-offs.

Paul Cook cannot allow us to be exposed too much and we do not want a mountain to climb in the second leg.

Even a goalless draw would do, giving us a really good chance away from home, where we have tended to play better this season.

It’s great Marc McNulty and Kyle Bennett are back in the frame, fingers crossed they can come through, steadily our strongest team is coming back together.

I really like Matt Clarke as well, his partnership with Christian Burgess works really well and I definitely rate him as a footballer.

It will depend how fit he is, the last thing we should do is put players out there who are 60 to 70-per-cent fit.

Personally I would put Conor Chaplin as the lone striker rather than McNulty, although admittedly he does have injury concerns.

Every time he plays he seems to score and even Cook himself has admitted the lad does not get enough game time.

Chaplin is a player we have lacked, somebody who can take those chances.

If something lands in the box he could put it away.

I believe tonight will be tight, neither side will want to be gung-ho in their approach.

And I am going for a Pompey 1-0 victory.

Graham’s line-up: Brian Murphy; Ben Davies; Christian Burgess; Matt Clarke; Enda Stevens; Danny Hollands; Michael Doyle; Gareth Evans; Gary Roberts; Kyle Bennett; Conor Chaplin