Blackpool still haven't 'knitted together' while Peterborough 'blow hot and cold' - but Portsmouth warned 'tough week' lies ahead

Alan McLoughlin has warned Pompey are heading into a crucial week that will test their promotion credentials.
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Following Saturday’s 6-1 win over non-league King’s Lynn in the second round of the FA Cup, the Blues’ attention quickly turns to an away trip to Blackpool on Tuesday night.

That’s then followed by the visit of Peterborough to Fratton Park next Saturday – a game that will see 2,000 fans return to PO4 for the first time since March.

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Both games will provide Kenny Jackett’s fourth-placed side with different challenges.

Former Pompey midfielder McLoughlin likes the way Blackpool, who currently sit 15th in the League One table, carried out their summer transfer business under new manager Neil Critchley – even though it hasn’t quite ‘knitted together’ yet for the Seasiders.

The Bloomfield Road outfit have brought in 17 new faces since the end of last term, including reported former Blues targets Ethan Robson and Ben Woodburn.

Meanwhile, Macca warned second-placed Peterborough will provide another ‘really tough game’ – especially if they’re up for it.

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Blackpool boss Neil Critchley.  Picture: Charlotte Tattersall/Getty ImagesBlackpool boss Neil Critchley.  Picture: Charlotte Tattersall/Getty Images
Blackpool boss Neil Critchley. Picture: Charlotte Tattersall/Getty Images
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A six-point return from both games would set Pompey up perfectly in their battle for promotion, with games against Ipswich, Fleetwood and Hull also on the horizon.

However, much hinges on the visit to the north west on Tuesday night.

If the Blues can win there, then McLoughlin believes Jackett's side will have the confidence to brush aside a Posh outfit who ‘blow hot and cold’.

Speaking on BBC Radio Solent after the King’s Lynn game, Macca said: ‘It is a tough week coming up and it’s a long trip to Blackpool, I’m pretty sure they (Pompey) will head off on Monday and get themselves settled up there.

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‘It’s probably a long time since they played Blackpool, but they face a team that has got some good players.

‘It hasn’t quite knitted together yet for Blackpool in terms of results.

‘But in terms of individual players they have some real talent.

‘The boy Jerry Yates is capable and able to score goals and they have one or two other players individually who are very good.

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‘They haven’t knitted together as a team yet – but I’m sure that will come further down the line in the season.

‘Then they face Peterborough who can blow a little bit hot and cold.

‘But if you catch them on the wrong day and they’re up for it and they’re confident, then it could be a really tough game.

‘But Pompey will go into that game and look forward to the game dependant on their result on Tuesday night.

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‘It’s a home game, we’ve won today (Saturday), the home form hasn’t been brilliant so far this season, so they’ll like to put that right next weekend.

‘But first they’ve got to deal with Blackpool, try to get three points there and if they do then they’ll have real confidence going into the Peterborough game.’

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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