Welcome to our Pompey away travel guide for the trip to Rochdale, brought to you by Pam Wilkins and Johnny Moore, in the memory of Ken Malley.
The Pompey Supporters’ Trust, club and police will provide fans with help and advice as they follow the Blues on the road. For up to date match day information, follow @PompeyfcCop on Twitter.
• Ground: Spotland Stadium. Opened: 1878. Capacity: 10,249. Record attendance: 24,231. Former name: St Clements Playing Fields
Pompey supporters will visit Spotland – off Sandy Lane, Rochdale, OL11 5DR – on Saturday, April 7.
The present Rochdale AFC began using the ground – previously home to St Clements Rugby Club – in 1907.
Blues fans will be in the all seated Willbutts Lane Stand.
• Getting there: Spotland, now known as the Crown Oil Arena for sposnorship reasons, is a little more than two miles from junction 20 of the M62.
Exit the M62 at junction 20 and follow signs north for Rochdale along the A627(M) – the opposite way to Oldham.
At the end of the A627(M), turn left at the first set of traffic lights – signposted Bury and Rochdale Town Centre.
B&Q will be on your right and Tesco on your left, follow this road until the next set of lights.
Here you need to be in the second of four lanes to head straight across (signposted Blackburn) into Roch Valley Way.
At the next crossroads go straight ahead into Sandy Lane. Continue for about half a mile and the stadium will be on your right.
• Parking: Car parking at the ground is now for permit holders only. So for away fans, it is a case of finding some on-street parking.
Supporters are urged to take care because most of the streets in the immediate vicinity of the ground have residents-only restrictions.
Fans could end up with a parking ticket, so it is best check first for any restriction signs before parking.
There is street parking to be had along the main A680 (Edenfield Road).
This can be found at the end of Willbutts Lane and is only a five to 10-minute walk away from the stadium.
Parking is also available at Oulder Hill Community School.
This can be found on Greave Avenue, Rochdale OL11 5EF, about half-a-mile from the ground.
• From the station: Trains run to Rochdale from Leeds and Manchester Victoria. The former will take around an hour, the latter 20 minutes.
Trains run regularly from London Kings Cross to Leeds (two-and-a-half hours). And from London Euston to Manchester Piccadilly (two hours).
Rochdale Station is around two miles from the ground, so you may want to take a taxi.
Alternatively, to shorten the walk, you can catch a Metrolink tram from outside the station into Rochdale town centre.
If you decide to walk from the station, leave the main entrance, proceed straight on at the roundabout in front into Maclure Road.
Walk past a fire station to the end and turn left on to Drake Street (A640).
Follow this until you reach Manchester Road (A58) – a dual carriageway. Turn right and walk along the right of the road. At the major junction, with traffic lights, turn left (crossing the A58) into Dane Street (A6060).
Just after passing Asda, bear right on to Mellor Street. Follow this to the end and bear left on to Spotland Road which becomes Edenfield Road. Then it’s left on to Willbutts Lane.
You can also travel by the Metrolink to Rochdale Interchange.
Trams from Manchester Piccadilly come every 10 minutes and the journey is an hour long.
Take lines seven, three or two to St Peter’s Square, then change to line five for Rochdale Interchange.
There is a taxi rank outside or it is a 20-minute walk to the ground.
Turn right on to Smith Street, cross the roundabout to the South Parade. Cross the next roundabout on to the Esplanade with the police station on your right and you’ll reach the major A58 junction. Now follow the directions above.
• Eating and drinking: At the ground, the Ratcliffe Bar will be open to Pompey supporters.
It is located at the car park end entrance to the ground, on Sandy Lane.
It will be open from midday, serves pies and shows Sky Sports. Opposite the away end is a fish and chip shop.
The Cemetery Hotel is at the bottom of Sandy Lane at 470 Bury Road, OL11 5EU.
It is an historic pub with Edwardian décor serving food and real ales.
Please note alcohol is not on sale to away fans inside the ground.