Portsmouth v Cheltenham: what's been said, team news, predicted XIs, form guides and key stats

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Pompey entertain League One rivals Cheltenham tonight at Fratton Park.

Here’s all you need to know ahead of the 7.45pm kick-off.

Pompey team news

Danny Cowley expects Welsh international midfielder Joe Morrell to return to his starting line-up after a cautious approach was adopted with the player on Saturday.

The player reported a niggling groin strain in the build-up to the Bolton game – hence his omission from the starting XI.

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Yet he’ll return to the midfield in what could be a new-look engine room for Cowley.

With Ryan Tunnicliffe out with a hamstring injury and the head coach conscious of the number of games 35-year-old Shaun Williams has played to date, he could turn to Louis Thompson for the game against Cheltenham.

Gassan Ahadme will return to the match-day squad as Cowley reported just 18 fit senior players for the Robins match-up.

Pompey host Cheltenham tonight in League One.Pompey host Cheltenham tonight in League One.
Pompey host Cheltenham tonight in League One.

Predicted line-up: Gavin Bazunu, Mahlon Romeo, Sean Raggett, Connor Ogilvie, Lee Brown, Joe Morrell, Louis Thompson, Marcus Harness, Reeco Hackett, Ronan Curtis, John Marquis. Subs: Alex Bass, Kieron Freeman, Shaun Williams, Miguel Azeez, Michael Jacobs, George Hirst, Gassan Ahadme.

Cheltenham team news

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Robins boss Michael Duff will pick from the same squad which snatched a 2-2 draw with Sheffield Wednesday on Saturday.

He has no new injury concerns going into the game at Fratton Park and is likely to stick to same XI that did so well against the Owls.

That means midfielder Taylor Perry remains out with a hip problem.

Meanwhile, Will Boyle (knee), Charlie Raglan (knee) and Callum Wright (knee) will also be missing.

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Predicted line-up: Scott Flinders, Matty Blair, Sean Long, Mattiie Pollock, Chris Hussey, Conor Thomas; Liam Sercombe, Ellis Chapman; Dan Crowley, Kyle Vassell, Kyle Joseph.

Subs not used: Owen Evans, Lewis Freestone, Andy Williams, Grant Horton, Dylan Barkers, Alfie May, Christian Norton.

They said what?Danny Cowley

‘We have a lot of respect for the job Michael Duff has done since the moment he came into the club.

‘They got to the (League Two) play-offs the season before and just missed out, while last term they were best team in that division.

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‘Already they have picked up a lot of points in League One and they’re a very difficult side to play against.

‘Cheltenham are well organised against the ball, while getting a number of balls into the box to provide a goal threat. They ask a lot of questions at both ends of the pitch.’

Michael Duff

‘It's a really good place to go and play football in an old fashioned type of stadium.

‘I used to love going to play at Portsmouth.

‘It would be nice if we delivered a performance and a result. The reason we wanted to get out of the league below is because we wanted to be competing against these big clubs.

"Their manager has been successful wherever he's gone.

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‘It is going to be a challenge because of the resources they do have and the players they can bring in. Week in week out we're playing against teams that are bigger than us.

‘We are due a better performance away from home.’

Matchday odds (Bet365)

Pompey: 8/11

1-0 6/1, 2-0 7/1, 2-1 15/2, 3-0 12/1, 3-1 14/1, 3-2 25/1

Cheltenham: 4/1

1-0 12/1, 2-0 22/1, 2-1 14/1, 3-0 50/1, 3-1 40/1, 3-2 40/1

Draw: 11/4

0-0 10/1, 1-1 6/1, 2-2 14/1, 3-3 50/1


Robert Lewis

Key Stats (All competitions)


Record this season: P18 W5 D4 L9

League position: (13th – 19 points)

Top Scorer: Marcus Harness (5)

Top Assists: Ryan Tunnicliffe (4)

Discipline: 28 yellow, 1 red


Record this season: P21 W6 D7 L8

League position: (16th – 19 points)

Top Scorer: Alfie May (5)

Top Assists: Callum Wright (3)

Discipline: 27 yellow, 0 red

Form guide


W 1-0 Bolton (H) – League One

D 2-2 Accrington (A) – League One

L 4-0 Ipswich (H) – League One

L 4-1 Rotherham (A) – League One

L 2-0 Sutton United (H) – Papa John’s Trophy


D 2-2 Sheffield Wednesday (H) – League One

D 0-0 Chelsea U21s (H) – Papa John’s Trophy

L 3-2 Doncaster Rovers (A) – League One

W 3-1 Morecambe (H) – League One

W 1-0 Accrington (H) – League One

Other fixtures (7.45pm kick-offs unless stated)

Charlton v Rotherham United, Crewe v Doncaster Rovers, Fleetwood v Wigan Athletic, Morecambe v Cambridge United, Sheffield Wednesday v Sunderland, Wycombe Wanderers v Ipswich Town.