Dockyard Derby: Portsmouth FC and Plymouth Argyle are not true derby rivals - here's why

LATER on today, Portsmouth FC and Plymouth Argyle will go head-to-head in their League One clash at Home Park.
Portsmouth vs Plymouth is not, and never has been, a derby game. Picture: Graham Hunt/ProSportsImagesPortsmouth vs Plymouth is not, and never has been, a derby game. Picture: Graham Hunt/ProSportsImages
Portsmouth vs Plymouth is not, and never has been, a derby game. Picture: Graham Hunt/ProSportsImages

Inevitably, some sport outlets will be touting this match as the ‘Dockyard Derby’ – so called because of both cities having a dockyard. But we’re here to set the record straight.

The two teams sit rougly 170 miles apart; to get from Fratton Park to Home Park by car would take you three and a half hours, and that’s if traffic is in your favour.

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It’s a term that has been long-loathed by the Fratton faithful, with many claiming that the rivalry has been artificially created. It’s certainly a far cry away from Pompey’s true derby rivals in Southampton.

Back in September 2018, we asked readers of The News what they thought of the term ‘Dockyard Derby’ – the unfortunate tag which often accompanies any mention of this fixture simply because of the naval and maritime histories both cities have in common. Sixty-three per cent of those who got in touch said they didn’t recognise the description.

That being said, today's match up is certainly set to be a tough one.

Pompey have had a sensational ‘new manager bounce’ under John Mousinho, with a stark turnaround in results since the departure of Danny Cowley. Both teams have won two of their past five games, although Plymouth sit second in the League One table compared to the Blues in tenth.

Statistic websites also have the historic head-to-head results at an almost even kilter, but Pompey will be hopeful of an away result this afternoon.