Portsmouth to go artificial intelligence gathering ahead of FA Cup trip to Harrogate

Share this article
Have your say

Pompey will adjust their training plans in the build-up to their FA Cup first-round clash at Harrogate.

Kenny Jackett confirmed his team will have two training sessions on an artificial surface prior to the fixture at the National League outfit on Monday, November 11.

Harrogate play on a 3G pitch at their Wetherby Road home.

And Jackett wants his players to get experience on that type of surface as they go all out to be fully prepared for their trip to The Town.

The Blues boss revealed his squad will be put through their paces on a 3G pitch on both the Saturday and Sunday prior to the televised Monday night encounter.

Pompey are currently looking at both the University of Portsmouth and a location near Petersfield as options to base themselves in preparation for the Harrogate tie.

Pompey travel to Harrogate Town on Monday, November 11   Picture: Tony Johnson

Pompey travel to Harrogate Town on Monday, November 11 Picture: Tony Johnson

Jackett admitted his side cannot use the unfamiliar playing surface as an excuse as they prepare to take on non-league opposition.

‘We’ve booked on the Saturday and Sunday an Astroturf pitch and made a provisional approach for another one,’ Jackett said.

‘We would want to be training on Astroturf on the Saturday and Sunday then playing on the Monday.

‘We’ve got some plans in place.

‘We’ve got a couple booked.

‘The youth side played at the university but whether we use that or not, I don’t know.

‘There’s one up towards Petersfield as well that we’ve made some enquiries about.

‘It is what it is.

‘We have to adapt to it and try to get through the tie, that’s my view on it.

‘It can be tricky, if you make it, it depends on your own personal attitude.

‘It can’t be an excuse, we have to go up there and work hard to get through.’

Harrogate are unbeaten in 10 matches in all competitions – a run that stretches back to September.

Simon Weaver’s in-form side are fourth in the National League and Jackett is expecting a difficult test.

But the Blues boss is hoping they can go on a run in the competition.

‘With the form they’re in, it’s a difficult tie in it’s own right,’ Jackett added.

‘But difficult ties are there to come through, which we’ve been pretty good at.

‘We want to get through and try to advance and, if possible, get one of the big boys.’