Up Next: Morecambe v Portsmouth

Portsmouth manager Richie Barker.
Portsmouth manager Richie Barker.

A bumper crowd is expected when Portsmouth visit the Globe Arena on Saturday.

Manager

Richie Barker. Former Crawley and Bury boss arrived with director of football Steve Coppell in December having previously guided the Gigg Lane side out of the Football League’s bottom tier. Has tightened up a leaky defence but has a real job on his hands after replacing Guy Whittingham with Pompey 21st in League 2.

Key Man

Sonny Bradley. Despite defensive problems under Whittingham the 22-year-old former Hull youngster, who made his name on loan at Aldershot, is Pompey’s player of the year so far. Strong player who is good on the ball will be challenged with keeping an eye on the likes of Jack Redshaw.

Form

Barker’s arrival has seen Pompey concede just seven goals in their last seven games and keep three clean sheets in their last five. But that hasn’t necessarily translated into victories, as like the Shrimps, Portsmouth have not won since Boxing Day, a 1-0 victory over Dagenham and Redbridge at Fratton Park. They have drawn three of their last four, including the 1-1 home stalemate with Mansfield last time out with Ryan Taylor’s first goal for the club sealing a point 12 minutes from time. Lost 2-1 at Southend on New Year’s Day. Barker has definitely made his side hard to beat however.

History

The Shrimps’ 3-0 defeat at Fratton Park in August was the first ever meeting between the two sides. One of the low points of Morecambe’s season, Andy Wright was sent off for two yellow cards with goals from Jed Wallace, David Connolly and Patrick Agyemang handing Pompey victory.

Possible line-up

Carson, Alfei, Painter, Bradley, Devera, Shorey, Racon, Fogden, Wallace, Barcham, Taylor (4-2-3-1)