MATCH PREVIEW: Portsmouth v Leyton Orient – League Two


Leyton Orient will be looking to get back to winning ways after suffering their first defeat under Kevin Nolan last weekend. However, they will face a stern test as they come up against a strong Portsmouth side at Fratton Park. Here we preview Saturday’s game:

[textmarker color=”1021C2″ type=”background color”]Portsmouth[/textmarker]

 Summer Transfers

[tabs title1=”IN” text1=”Kyle Bennett (Doncaster Rovers), Kal Naismith (Accrington Stanley, Undisclosed), Enda Stevens (Aston Villa), Gary Roberts(Chesterfield, Undisclosed), Adam McGurk (Burton Albion), Adam Barton (Coventry City), Christian Burgess (Peterborough United, 75,000), Michael Doyle (Sheffield United), Jayden Stockley (AFC Bournemouth, Loan), Ben Tollitt (Skelmersdale United), Gareth Evans (Fleetwood Town), Matt Clarke (Ipswich Town, Loan), Ben Davies (Sheffield United), Brian Murphy (Queens Park Rangers), Romuald Boco (Bharat FCIndia), Aaron McCarey (Wolverhampton Wanderers, Loan), Caolan Lavery (Sheffield Wednesday, Loan), Marc McNulty (Sheffield United, Loan) ” tabs title2=”OUT” text2=”Danny East (Grimsby Town), Joe Devera (Boreham Wood), Ben Chorley (Bromley), Tom Craddock (Guiseley), Nicky Shorey (Pune City India), Wes Fogden (Yeovil Town), Bradley Tarbuck (Dorchester Town), Dan Butler (Torquay United), Ryan Taylor (Oxford United), Jed Wallace (Wolverhampton Wanderers, £275,000), Craig Westcarr (Mansfield Town), Andy Barcham (AFC Wimbledon), Michael Poke (Eastleigh, Loan), Paul Robinson(AFC Wimbledon), Chad Field (Bognor Regis Town, Loan), Snorre Nilsen (Bognor Regis Town, Loan), Romuald Boco (Havant & Waterlooville, Loan), Calvin Davies (Havant & Waterlooville, Loan), Liam Sayers (Dorchester Town, Loan), James Dunne (Dagenham & Redbridge, Loan), Adam May (Gosport Borough, Loan), Kal Naismith (Hartlepool United, Loan), Johannes Ertl”]

 Winter Transfers

[tabs title1=”IN” text1=”Michael Smith (Swindon Town, Loan), Kieron Freeman (Sheffield United, Loan), ” tabs title2=”OUT” text2=”Paul Jones (Crawley Town, Loan), James Dunne (Cambridge United)” ]


This Season

League Two: 5th  FA Cup: 4th round  League Cup: 2nd round  Top Scorer: Conor Chaplin 8

Portsmouth are currently in 5th place in League Two on 45 points. The O’s are only two points behind Paul Cook’s side but Pompey have two games in hand over Orient.

The south-coast side have spent the whole campaign in the promotion hunt and they are yet to drop below 6th place. They started the league season with a nine-match unbeaten run that was eventually ended by Exeter City in late September. Since then they have lost just three league games (one of which came against the O’s).

They started 2016 with a convincing win over Crawley Town, however they followed it up with a narrow 1-0 defeat against promotion rivals Oxford.

Pompey exited the FA Cup last weekend at the hands of Bournemouth. Portsmouth went ahead just before half-time thanks to Gary Roberts but the Cherries responded in the second half and goals from Joshua King and Marc Pugh ensured the Premier League side avoided an upset.

Portsmouth were then back in league action on Tuesday night as they travelled to Morecambe. Gareth Evans gave Pompey the lead five minutes before the interval and it was looking as if that would be enough to win the game for the visitors. However, they were incredibly denied the victory by an injury-time equaliser from Morecambe goalkeeper Barry Roche. The 33-year-old stopper headed the ball home from a corner to record the first goal of his career, rescuing a point for the Shrimps.

Last Line-up:


Davies  Webster  Clarke  Stevens

Evans  Close  Doyle  Naismith

Smith  McNulty



Bass, Burgess, Barton, Chaplin, Bennett (Naismith 72′), Roberts (Smith 72′), McGurk (McNulty83′)

Pompey have won three of their last six league games at Fratton Park. Oxford United are the only side to have conceded fewer goals than Portsmouth in League Two so far this season. Pompey boast the best home defensive record in the league, having conceded just 8 goals.

Team News

Pompey boss Paul Cook will be without Danny Hollands as the midfielder remains on the sidelines with a fractured leg.

Adam Webster is also a unlikely to feature at least not from the start as he is struggling with a hamstring problem and won’t be risked by Cook unless necessary. Christian Burgess is the most likely candidate to replace him.

Goalkeeper Paul Jones won’t be available after he joined Crawley on loan on deadline day.

Cook could well recall Gary Roberts, Kyle Bennett and Adam McGurk after the trio were rested on Tuesday night.


[textmarker color=”F00000″ type=”background color”]Leyton Orient[/textmarker]

Last Saturday Leyton Orient suffered their first defeat under player-manager Kevin Nolan as Cambridge United claimed a 3-1 win.

The U’s were gifted the opening goal after just ten minutes when Frazer Shaw’s back pass was intercepted by Ben Williamson who rounded Alex Cisak and slotted the ball into the Orient net. Williamson then added his and Cambridge’s second early in the second half. Armand Gnanaduillet came off the bench and opened his goalscoring account for the O’s, reducing the deficit. However, the visitors restored their two goal lead thanks to Jimmy Spencer who sealed the win for Shaun Derry’s men.

Nolan’s men slipped down to 9th place in League Two following that defeat, however they are still only one point off the play-off places.

Orient’s victory at Wycombe in Kevin Nolan’s first game in charge is their only win in their last six league games on the road.

Team News

Kevin Nolan oversaw changes to his squad before Monday’s transfer deadline.

Peterborough loanee Shaun Brisley was an unused substitute last weekend but he will be hoping to make his Orient debut at Fratton Park on Saturday.

Nicky Hunt joined the O’s from Mansfield this week and he may be handed his debut as well.

Cole Kpekawa was recalled by his parent club QPR but he was replaced by Crystal Palace defender Jerome Binnom-Williams on a loan deal until the end of the season. Frazer Shaw could find his place at left-back under threat following Binnom-Williams’ arrival.

However, the new O’s boss won’t necessarily drop those who made costly errors against the U’s. Nolan has stated:

[blocktext align=”center”]I don’t want my players going out and thinking ‘if I make a mistake, I am going to be dropped’ because that is not the affect.[/blocktext]

Armand Gnanduillet’s goalscoring cameo last weekend could well mean that he is pushing for a place in the starting-lineup alongside Jay Simpson. Nolan has praised the impact the striker has made so far.

Sammy Moore was back in the squad against Cambridge and Alan Dunne is fit again too. Dunne featured in the reserve side’s 4-1 win over Southend along with Hunt, Brisley and Gnanduillet among others. Nolan also played the first 45 minutes.

Orient will still be without Paul McCallum, Dean Cox and Lloyd James as they continue their rehabilitation from their respective injuries.


Ex Pompey

Alex Cisak Portsmouth in November 2012, but he managed to make just one appearance for Pompey before being recalled

Paul McCallum in January 2015. He joined League Two Portsmouth but only managed seven substitute appearances and he was sent-off late on in just his second game for the club.

Nigel Atangana made 48 appearances for Portsmouth during a season-and-a-half with the club. He signed for Orient from Pompey last month.




The O’s have won their last five games against Pompey.

On Boxing Day Leyton Orient came from a goal down to defeat Portsmouth in what was an eventful clash.

Pompey opened the scoring after just four minutes as a low cross deflected into the net. However Orient were handed a way back into the game when Adam Webster pulled Jobi McAnuff down in the box. Webster received a red card and Jay Simpson dispatched the penalty to record his 17th goal of the season. The O’s then went in front in first-half stoppage time as Ollie Palmer headed the ball into far corner of the Pompey net.

Orient looked comfortable against ten men, but the O’s also went down to ten when captain Mathieu Baudry was sent off for reacting to a tackle. However, the O’s scored from the free-kick as Clohessy’s delivery was headed home by Palmer. Evans was able to pull a goal back for Portsmouth and the visitors were only denied a point by some fantastic saves from Alex Cisak.

Orient’s last away win over Portsmouth was November 2012. Izale McLeod saw his penalty saved by Ryan Allsop in the first half and the hosts were punished for their miss. Kevin Lisbie put the O’s ahead after half an hour and Moses Odubajo extended their lead six minutes in to the second half. Paul Benson was then brought down in the area by Nathan Clarke and Izale McLeod atoned for his earlier miss by pulling a goal back from the spot. However, the visitors were soon awarded a penalty of their own and Kevin Lisbie grabbed his second to restore Orient’s two goal advantage. Scott Allan reduced the deficit again for Pompey, but it was not enough and the O’s returned to London with three points.

Portsmouth’s last home victory against the O’s was back in August 1996. Pompey won 2-0 thanks to a brace from Deon Burton.




[textmarker color=”000000″ type=”background color”]Match Officials[/textmarker]

Referee: Graham Salisbury

Assistants: Anthony Serrano and Ian Fissenden

Fourth Official: John O’Brien



Fratton Park

Capacity: 20,700

Post Code: PO4 8RA



How will the O’s fare against Portsmouth? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below.


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