A week can be a long time in football and the past week has epitomised how highs can so quickly be followed by lows.
Pompey thoroughly deserved their FA Cup 3rd round win against Ipswich Town last Tuesday as they outplayed their Championship visitors to set up a 4th round home tie with AFC Bournemouth on Saturday 31st January.
Frustratingly, it was not to be at the weekend in the league as Oxford Utd took all three points to inflict defeat with a well taken debut goal from Jordan Bowery.
This was after a superb double save from an Oxford penalty by new goalkeeper Ryan Fulton who joined on Friday on a youth-loan from Liverpool until the end of the season.
The result leaves Pompey in 5th position in the League 2 table on 44 points – 7 adrift from Oxford in the last automatic promotion place although the Blues’ do have one game in hand on the U’s.
Looking back to this time last year, Bury were 7th (Pompey were 18th) and a massive 10 points adrift of the last promotion place, but ultimately managed to nab it on the last day of the season from Southend.
History is not always of course an accurate measure of predicting the future, but it does show that with 20 games and still 60 points up for grabs, the season has a good way to go yet and twists and turns can be expected.
Key to the rest of the season will be how Paul Cook decides to strengthen his squad in the transfer window with a striker top of the list.
Time will tell whether Pompey can follow Bury’s example, but one thing is for certain, the Blues’ remain well-positioned to take advantage of any slip-ups by the clubs currently in the Top 3, who you could argue will feel the pressure more than the chasing pack.
A win at Morecambe on Tuesday 2nd February will be just what’s needed to push Pompey on, before that though the magic of the FA Cup returns when the Cherries visit Fratton Park this Saturday. Could an upset be on the cards?
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