Pompey are back to square one in the FA Cup
By Site reporter
Friday 02 Nov 2012 23:20:00
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You have to go back to 1982 to find Pompey's last FA Cup first round tie. Then, Billy Rafferty and Alan Biley each scored twice as Hereford lost 4-1 at Fratton Park on the day the Blues fauthful paid tribute to Jimmy Dickinson, who'd died 12 days earlier.

A generation has passed since then and Pompey's place among the top two divisions means they have not had to begin their FA Cup campaigns until the third round.

Now they are back in the third tier and with a seemingly tougher task to reach round than they had 30 years ago.

Notts County, who have already beaten Pompey 3-0 this season, that in a League One encounter at Meadow Lane, stand in the way - but Pompey are in better shape than they were when they went to the east Midlands - in form, if not in squad strength.

Pompey will be without loan duo Mikkel Andersen and Scott Allan. Reading and West Brom respectively have declined permission for the pair to play in a competition in which they may need them at a later date. Carl Dickinson is expected to be ruled out for the same reason.

Ashley Harris and Darel Russell are struggling with ankle and hamstring injuries, which could leave Pompey down to 15 senior players.

Notts County have signed defender Damion Stewart on a short-term contract and he could be added to the squad. Goalkeeper Fabian Spiess (knee), defenders Julian Kelly (hamstring), Tom Williams (calf), Carl Regan (ankle) and Manny Smith (knee) and midfielder Joss Labadie (knee) are all unavailable.

One of the 15 who will be on duty for the Blues is Johnny Ertl, who believes that, despite the final score, Pompey did enough lst time out at Bramall Lane on Monday night to show they could live with the big sides in League One, of which Notts County are one.

Ertl told the Pompey website: 'Our performance at Sheffield United showed that we are definitely capable against sides at the top of the table, although the result was obviously disappointing. People I know from my days with the Blades were coming up after the game and telling me that Pompey would be right up there if we kept playing like that.

'But I don’t tend to look too far forward and I’m focused on the cup meeting with Notts County. After two defeats in the league, we now have to try to get another run going. We have a strong and competitive squad and despite those losses, the team have been playing well. If anything, we’ve tended to overplay at times. But the important thing is that we go into every game with the right attitude. The matches come thick and fast and that’s a bonus for me. I love being at Pompey and within the competitive nature of English football.'

Our prediction: Pompey 3 Notts C 1

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