Off The Line Preview: Gillingham v Pompey

Fan Hub partner Off The Line previews Pompey’s clash with Gillingham.

You can read their full Sky Bet League One weekend preview here.

Portsmouth will look to extend their unbeaten run and strengthen their chances of a play-off spot as they face Gillingham on the road. 

Gillingham are still struggling for players. They had to name a full bench of youth players again on Tuesday night when they were defeated 2-0 at home to Cheltenham.

They did have Olly Lee returning from injury which was a boost but there’s still a heavy injury list. The fans seem to have lost interest in the club with chairman Paul Scally constantly making enemies. People behind the scenes are still heavily linking Steve Evans with the Stevenage job and he’s still odds-on favourite for the job.

The Gills haven’t won in their last five league games and last weekend’s 2-0 defeat to Crewe Alexandra was a new low for the side. I think the noise surrounding Steve Evans is distracting the players on the pitch and that’s costing them.

Portsmouth are unbeaten in their last six league games and have won their last five games in all competitions. The Cowley brother’s have found a system recently that suits the team, and the club are being rewarded for giving them time to turn things around.

They have settled on a three-back formation with Sean Raggett in the centre alongside Kieran Freeman and Connor Ogilvie. Freeman and Ogilvie are given the license to go forward with Joe Morrell and Shaun Williams dropping back into the centre.

George Hirst finally scored his first Football League goal after 44 games. He hasn’t always impressed in front of goal, but his work ethic was finally rewarded on Tuesday night.

Sean Raggett will be missing through suspension on Saturday, and I expect Lee Brown to come back in as he missed Tuesday through suspension.

Prediction: Gillingham 0-3 Portsmouth
Portsmouth will run out winners beating Steve Evans’ Gillingham side to continue their unbeaten run.

One to Watch: Marcus Harness – Portsmouth midfielder Marcus Harness has benefited most from the change in system. He has eight goals in 18 games and has scored in his last four league games in a row.

Photo: Gillingham FC

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