US Portsmouth boss sweating on his son’s availability for crucial Wessex 1 promotion battle with Alton

US Portsmouth boss Glenn Turnbull is hoping his son will be fit to help solve a defensive problem this weekend.

Thursday, 9th January 2020, 1:04 pm
Updated Thursday, 9th January 2020, 3:14 pm
Liam Kyle could switch from left wing-back to centre half against Alton this weekend. Picture: Duncan Shepherd

Centre half Tom Cain starts a three-match ban following his late dismissal during last weekend’s home loss to fellow Wessex Division 1 promotion hopefuls Hythe & Dibden.

A second central defender, Harry Birmingham, is rated only 50-50 for another Victory Stadium showdown with a fellow high-flyer - this time third-placed Alton.

Liam Kyle will return to a three-man central defensive unit alongside John Cass and Tom Jeffes, providing Elliott Turnbull is fit to take his place at left wing-back.

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While leaders USP have played more away games than home matches - a 9-11 split - Alton have played 13 home games and only seven away.

One of the home matches on their 3G surface was against USP in early November, when the hosts netted twice in the last three minutes for a 2-1 win.

That set Alton off on a seven-match winning league streak that was only ended when Newport beat them 3-1 last weekend.

‘It should be a good game,’ said Glenn Turnbull, who is keenly aware that his club could be celebrating a raft of promotions come the spring.

In addition to the first team topping their table, Lee Mould’s reserves are also top of the Wyvern Combination East Division and last weekend demolished Clanfield 14-0.

Teenager Freddy Nancarrow took his seasonal goal tally to 23 from only 11 games with a double hat-trick, while Dan Sibley struck four times.

Both US teams are also through to the quarter finals of the Portsmouth Senior Cup - hosting Horndean and Fareham Town respectively next Tuesday and Thursday.

The club’s Hampshire County Youth League side would go top of Division 2 if they won their game in hand on leaders AFC Portchester, and the women’s team are joint second in Division 2 of the Hampshire League and also targeting promotion.

‘As a collective, it’s fantastic,’ Turnbull enthused. ‘It couldn’t really be going any better. Now it’s just a case of trying to finish it off.’