By Site Reporter
Friday 01 Feb 2019 21:22:00
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There are two big questions to be answered as Pompey welcome Doncaster to Fratton Park this weekend. How will Kenny Jackett incorporate his new recruits into the team and squad, and can the Blues withstand the pressure that three straight league defeats have brought?

Pompey host Rovers having been not only knocked off the top of League One by Luton but having been left five points behind the Hatters by Tuesday night's 3-2 defeat at Kenilworth Road.

It's not many weeks since Pompey had the five-point lead at the top but their promotion bid has gone off the rails with below-par performances against Blackpool, Oxford and Luron, even if cup progress in two competitions has broken up the run of losses.

The talking point for Pompey ahead of Doncaster's visit is who of the new players will feature. Striker Omar Bogle was a useful second half substitute at Luton, scoring one and setting one up, and seems to have a good chance of starting up front ahead of Brett Pitman or Oli Hawkins.

Another striker, James Vaughan, is in the mix but may have to wait for his Blues bow, while wingers Lloyd Isgrove and Viv Solomon-Otabor will do well to displace Ronan Curtis or Jamal Lowe just yet. And any hopes Jackett might have had in giving Bryn Morris or Andy Cannon midfield starts alongside Tom Naylor will have to wait - both have picked up minor injuries - which means one of Dion Donohue or Ben Close is likely to get the nod instead.

Jackett knows the onus is on his team to perform and put their poor league run, hopefully just a blip, behind them. He told 'There are many good teams in this division and Doncaster are certainly one of them. They’ll have genuine aspirations of getting in the play-offs and winning promotion themselves, so we’ll respect them without worrying too much about the opposition.

'We go into the game off the back of a poor run of results in the league, despite the cup results sprinkled in there. So we’re looking to bounce back after Tuesday night, even though it could have gone either way in the second half.

'It’s results that count and we want to perform like we did after the break, while rediscovering that way to keep clean sheets and get wins. You just have to analyse what you’re doing right and wrong, then look forward to the next match. We need to push forward with determination. Our crowd have been terrific and will be again on Saturday, so we have to bring them into play with our performance.'

As well as Hawkins being fit again, right-back Nathan Thompson is also in contention.

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