Conor Chaplin: bank on Portsmouth winning promotion ahead of Barnsley and Sunderland

Conor Chaplin is convinced Pompey will be in the Championship next season.

By neil.allen1
Wednesday, 24th April 2019, 7:00 am

The former Blues striker believes Kenny Jackett’s men will successfully emerge ahead of Barnsley and Sunderland to capture second place in the table.

Pompey and Luton are the only sides among League One’s top eight to have defeated Coventry so far this season.

Admittedly, Jackett’s troops found it tough during Monday’s 2-1 triumph, nonetheless claimed an eighth-successive win in all competitions.

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Conor Chaplin, seen here applauding the Fratton faithful on his return, is convinced Pompey will win promotion this season. Picture: Joe Pepler

Chaplin, who appeared as a second-half substitute for the Sky Blues, was a member of the Pompey squad which claimed the League Two title two years ago.

A run of 10 wins from the final 12 fixtures earned that crown – and he is adamant the current crop can follow suit.

The 22-year-old said: ‘Pompey will get second place – and I hope so as well.

‘They know what they are doing, a group of men. They know exactly how to be a success.

‘There are a lot of players in that dressing room who have had success, it’s something expected of them.

‘I thought we were the better team on Monday to be honest, our record against the top teams is very good.

‘Obviously, I’ve been in this situation before at Pompey and can see the way the fans are, it’s a big part of the momentum, they start believing it, they can start smelling it.

‘As players, you react off that, you go into games expecting to win and thinking you are going to win, you can’t see any other outcome.

‘That’s the sort of effect that can happen at a good club, and that’s what is happening at the moment to Pompey.

‘I hope they go up in the top two – and I think they will.’

Brett Pitman’s late goal earned Pompey the double over Coventry this season.

Yet many of the Blues’ promotion rivals during the course of the campaign have failed to enjoy similar success over Mark Robins’ side.

Chaplin added: ‘You could see from the way we play, we back our ability on the ball, the gaffer has us playing an attractive style to watch.

‘If you look at our record against the top teams, we’ve beaten Charlton twice, taken four points off Sunderland, beaten Doncaster with another game still to play, taken four points off Peterborough and four points off Barnsley.

‘We struggle a bit at home on not a great pitch, so when you come and play on a carpet like Fratton Park it’s easier to play good football.’