Why Portsmouth's fixture run-in will be the envy of League One rivals Oxford, Charlton, Blackpool and Co

Pompey face six of the bottom seven in their promotion run-in.

By Neil Allen
Monday, 29th March 2021, 12:34 pm
The Cowleys have got off to the perfect start at Fratton Park - and the remaining fixtures are highly favourable. Picture: Daniel Chesterton/phcimages.com
The Cowleys have got off to the perfect start at Fratton Park - and the remaining fixtures are highly favourable. Picture: Daniel Chesterton/phcimages.com

While they are not scheduled to play anyone higher than 12th in the current League One table.

That is the heartening fixture list for the Blues during the final 10 matches of the season.

Danny Cowley has steered Pompey to successive wins in his opening two matches as head coach.

In doing so, the Blues are back jostling for the League One play-off spots, presently positioned in fifth.

Still 11 points adrift of second-placed Peterborough, gatecrashing the automatic promotion spots remains improbable, though.

Nonetheless, Pompey posses a highly-encouraging end to the campaign in terms of remaining fixtures.

And that consists of scheduled to meet 10 of the 13 lowest-placed clubs in League One.

On Good Friday, rock bottom Rochdale visit Fratton Park, opposition presently four points adrift of safety.

Brian Barry-Murphy’s side have won two of their last 19 games – and have the worst defensive record in the division.

Then, on Monday, there’s a trip to Wigan, managed by ex-Pompey assistant boss Leam Richardson.

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Positioned 22nd, they have rallied in recent weeks, with one defeat from their last five games, while drew with Ipswich on Saturday.

Pompey are actually scheduled to play all of the sides presently in League One’s relegation zone.

There are also Bristol Rovers (April 24) and AFC Wimbledon (May 1).

In the case of Rovers, since Joey Barton became manager in mid-February, they have lost seven of their 10 matches, collecting seven points from a possible 30.

In fact, of the current bottom seven, Northampton is the only side the Blues won’t meet.

In addition to the bottom four are 18th-placed Burton (April 10) and 19th-placed Swindon (April 20).

Intriguingly, Pompey have still to play Accrington twice.

John Coleman’s men are 13th and just five points behind the Blues, yet were thumped 7-0 by Peterborough on Saturday.

There is also a trip to Crewe (A), who are currently 14th, while MK Dons (April 17) represent the highest-ranked team left.

Russell Martin’s men are 12th in League One, four points behind Pompey, albeit with the Dons having played two games more.

As ever, it will be over to the Blues to take advantage of what appears to be an attractive remaining fixture list.

Pompey’s final 10 games: Rochdale (H) - April 2, Wigan (A) - April 5, Burton (H) - April 10, Crewe (A) - April 13, MK Dons (A) - April 17, Swindon (A) - April 20, Bristol Rovers (H) - April 24, Accrington (A) - April 27, AFC Wimbledon (A) - May 1, Accrington (H) - May 8.

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