The south coast derby is ‘not that interesting’ to Southampton’s players.
That’s the verdict of boss Ralph Hasenhuttl after Pompey were paired with their fierce rivals in the Carabao Cup.
The Southampton manager believes his team will not have been caught up in the excitement generated by the two rivals being paired in the Carabao Cup next month.
He told the Southern Daily Echo: ‘I don’t know if our players are following this noise from the fans so much.
‘I think for us; the next game is against Manchester United is a big one and an important one.
‘After this is the international break so they are all going away so I won’t be able to control what they will be doing or thinking then.
‘Professional players think differently. They are really focused on what is happening today and what they have to do for the next game.
‘The Portsmouth game is not that interesting for them.’
Southampton have not beaten Pompey in 14 years with the Blues picking two memorable 4-1 victories in that time.
That’s a statistic Hasenhuttl is aware of.
He added: ‘I know that we didn’t win very often there. I think it was a few draws and a few losses but not many wins. It’s a good time to turn the tables.’