Portsmouth fixtures: Why Danny Cowley's side could still take on Derby in League One next season - and not Wycombe

Pompey’s 2021-22 League One fixtures against Wycombe Wanderers could still be swapped with games against Derby County.

By Mark McMahon
Thursday, 24th June 2021, 1:43 pm

That’s because the threat of relegation still looms large over the Championship outfit, who were on Wednesday ordered to pay £100,000 by an independent disciplinary commission following an investigation into accounting regularities.

Both the Rams and the EFL have a right to appeal the decision.

And it’s because of that right to appeal that the league’s governing body announced an ‘interchangeable fixture list’ for the forthcoming campaign.

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It was constructed in case any appeal process led to Derby being handed a retrospective points deduction and therefore relegated to League One.

They would subsequently replace Wycombe in the third tier, with Gareth Ainsworth’s Adams Park outfit returning to the Championship following their 22nd place finish and relegation at the end of last season.

Both Wanderers and Derby, who are managed by Wayne Rooney, acknowledged that fact when they published their respective fixtures for the campaign ahead.

The EFL developed an interchangeable fixture list as the threat of Derby relegation lingers due to potential appeals. Picture: Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

The Rams said on their official website: ‘Please note that these fixtures are subject to change and at this stage the fixture list is regarded as a DRAFT’.

According to the released Pompey fixture list, Danny Cowley’s side are due to travel to Wycombe’s Adams Park on Saturday, November 13, while the Fratton Park game against Wanderers is scheduled for Saturday, March 13.

Yet they could still be swapped with games against Derby, pending the outcome of any appeal.

It is not clear as this stage how long that appeal process could take, with EFL games kicking off on Saturday, August 7, with Pompey away at Fleetwood.

The last time the Blues played at Pride Park was in October 2011, when the managerless Blues lost the Championship fixture 3-1.