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Preview: Leicester vs Portsmouth

Leicester
vs.
Portsmouth

Walkers Stadium

19/03/03

3 p.m

Leicester look to continue their push for the play-offs with back-to-back victories when Portsmouth visit the Walkers Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

The Foxes finally ended their dismal run of four matches without victory at Scunthorpe last weekend, running out comfortable 3-0 winners against the division strugglers.

Standing in their way of another three points are a Portsmouth side in strong form with faint play-off aspirations of their own.

The south coast side have kept clean sheets in seven of their last eight Championship fixtures, a stat which does not bode well for former hero Yakubu against his former side.

The Nigerian international spent two excellent years at Fratton Park in the club's rise to the Premier League, before eventually departing for Middlesbrough for £7.5 million in 2005.

But now on loan with the Foxes, Yakubu will be looking to help his current side seek revenge for City's Fratton Park debacle earlier in the campaign.

Steve Cotterill's side handed Leicester a footballing lesson with a crushing 6-1 win back in September, a result from which the Foxes' goal difference has never recovered from.

But under new leadership and a much-improved side, Leicester will head into the clash a far stronger unit for the Walkers clash.

The Foxes lost only their first match on home soil under Sven-Goran Eriksson against Norwich a week and a half ago, and still possess the division's strongest record in 2011.

Visitors Portsmouth have not won in their last two, their goalless draw at home to Middlesbrough last weekend following a defeat at Bristol City to end their six-match winning streak.

Vital Quotes:

Leicester striker Yakubu: "It is normal when you go three or four games without a goal. I am not under any pressure.

"I expect to score every day and in every game I play, so when you stop scoring for three or four matches it takes a couple in one game to get you going again.

"I have been unlucky in recent games. There have been some really good saves, which happens sometimes. I believe the goals will come again and I hope they will come tomorrow."

Portsmouth manager Steve Cotterill: "I think I remember saying straight after that game that Leicester were one of the best sides we have played.

"We have since seen that by their upturn in fortunes and the way they have gone up the table.

"Sometimes things go right for you on certain days. Leading up to that game we probably earned that bit of luck against Leicester that night."

Leicester Team News:

On-loan Chelsea defender Jeffrey Bruma could return after missing the last two matches with a groin strain.

Fellow Blues loanee Patrick van Aanholt remains sidelined with a thigh injury, while Steve Howard continues his long-term absence.

Player to watch: Yakubu

Against his former side, the powerful Nigerian will be desperate to find the score sheet for the first time in six matches.

The 28-year-old proved a firm favourite with the Fratton faithful during his two years with the club, but will be looking to break hearts soon enough for his current side.

Portsmouth Team News:

Midfielder Liam Lawrence picked up a knock in training earlier this week, but should be passed fit for the clash.

Player to watch: Liam Lawrence

Proved instrumental in dismantling the Foxes at Fratton Park earlier in the campaign with two goals.

One of the most dangerous players in the division on his day, Lawrence could prove a thorn in City's side together with forwards Dave Kitson and namesake Nugent.

Match Facts & Stats

- A win for Pompey would complete their first league 'double' over the Foxes since the 1929/30 season.

- Leicester's post-millennium record against Portsmouth is strong, losing only one of the six clashes between the two sides.

- Portsmouth have won six of their last eight league fixtures.

- Steve Cotterill's side have won more matches when drawing at half-time than any other side in the division.

Ref Watch:

Paul Tierney (Lancashire)

Matches: 25
Yellows: 62
Reds: 7

Match Prediction:

Revenge is a dish best served with three points. Leicester 2-1 Portsmouth.

Next Fixtures:

Saturday 2nd April

Middlesbrough (A)


Writer:JBFox
Date:Friday March 18 2011
Time: 6:49PM

Comments

0
Canít believe youíve broke our two players we loaned you!
merlin
18/03/2011 20:16:00
0
Excellent preview!!
eastneydave
20/03/2011 18:41:00
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