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22 December 2018 Venue Fratton Park Attendance

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English Football League - League One

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Match Previews

Match Preview: Pompey v Sunderland

All you need to know about League One clash

21 December 2018

Pompey v Sunderland

You do not need to wrap it neatly and place it under the Christmas tree.

No, the gift that most Pompey fans want to see this year is their side continuing to impress at the top of the League One table.

Whatever the result against Sunderland at Fratton Park on Saturday, they will definitely be at the summit on December 25.

But with the visitors currently just five points behind in third spot – and with two games in hand – victory for the Blues would certainly provide a festive fillip.

Jack Ross’ side have suffered a solitary league defeat all season – a 2-1 reverse at Burton back in September.

An FA Cup exit to Walsall was a recent blip, but otherwise they come to the south coast in decent form.

The Black Cats are, of course, trying to bounce back after suffering successive relegations from the Premier League to the third tier.

It was in the top-flight that the sides last met, with both league clashes in 2009/10 ending in a 1-1 draw.

But the Blues also won an FA Cup fourth round clash that campaign, eventually going all the way to the final at Wembley.

Luke McGee is still sidelined with a wrist injury, but David Wheeler is back in contention following a hamstring problem.

Sunderland goalkeeper Jon McLaughlin has recovered from back spasm and should return on Saturday, although Denver Hume (ankle) and Donald Love (knee) are both out.

Tom Flanagan is also a doubt in defence, while former Pompey loanee Chris Maguire is likely to start on the bench.

Read the thoughts of Kenny Jackett and Ben Thompson or register for a free iFollow account to watch the below videos.

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Apologies, this video is unvailable.

Pompey: 32 wins
Sunderland: 37 wins
33 draws

At Fratton Park
Pompey: 23 wins
Sunderland: 11 wins
17 draws

The match has been sold out for a number of weeks, although fans can see if any seats are available online via the ticket exchange.

Fans travelling by train should note that, due to a strike by guards, a reduced service is running on Saturday.

Domestic iFollow subscribers can listen to live commentary from Andy Moon and Guy Whittingham by signing into their account and visiting the match centre from 2pm on Saturday.

Overseas subscribers and match pass holders can watch the action – now with on-screen graphics – and commentary will begin from around 10 minutes before kick-off.

Click here for more information about using iFollow on a matchday and click here for information on downloading the app, so you can access content on your mobile device.

We will have updates throughout the game on Twitter and the match centre. You can also see behind-the-scenes content on our Instagram story and Snapchat account.

There will be post-match reaction on the website, iFollow and our official YouTube channel, with highlights to follow on Sunday.

Local listeners can hear commentary by tuning in to either Express FM or BBC Radio Solent.

Pompey are the 10/11 favourites with Sky Bet to secure all three points, while the visitors can be backed at 14/5.

Click here to read our full betting guide and visit to earn money for the club when you place a bet. Please gamble responsibly.

Blackpool v Barnsley
Bradford v Scunthorpe
Bristol Rovers v Fleetwood
Charlton v Gillingham
Doncaster v Oxford
Luton v Burton
Peterborough v Walsall
Plymouth v Accrington
Shrewsbury v Coventry
Southend v Rochdale
Wycombe v AFC Wimbledon


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Match Reports

Pompey 3 Sunderland 1

Evans (pen), Curtis and Thompson on target in festive Fratton victory

22 December 2018

Gareth Evans celebrates scoring for Pompey against Sunderland
Photo: Joe Pepler/PinPep

Pompey ensured it would be a very Merry Christmas by seeing off Sunderland in a pulsating encounter on the south coast.

There was plenty of energy, but little goalmouth action before the break – but that certainly changed after it.

Gareth Evans opened the scoring from the penalty spot after Glenn Loovens had been sent off for a foul on Oli Hawkins.

Ronan Curtis soon doubled the advantage, although Luke O’Nien reduced the deficit in front of the biggest crowd Fratton Park had seen for seven years.

Nerves were quickly calmed, however, as Ben Thompson added another for the Blues, who continued to attack right up until the final whistle.

Kenny Jackett stuck with the same side that had battled for a point up at Barnsley the previous week.

However, David Wheeler had sufficiently recovered from a hamstring injury to take his place among the substitutes.

The atmosphere inside a packed Fratton Park was crackling before a ball had been kicked and continued to impress throughout the contest.

But while the action on the pitch was often played at a hectic pace, there were not many clear-cut chances to excite the sell-out crowd during the first half.

Ronan Curtis was a threat for the hosts and Jon McLaughlin came tearing from his line to deny the Republic of Ireland international a shot.

A shot for O’Nien then hit Nathan Thompson right in the face, with the right-back looking dazed, but able to continue.

Pompey put some dangerous balls into the mixer, but the Sunderland defence looked solid and headed everything clear.

Hawkins thought he should have been awarded a penalty midway through the half after having his shirt tugged by O’Nien, although referee Peter Bankes disagreed.

There were plenty of firm challenges going in, with Lee Brown and Lee Cattermole both receiving a talking to following one clash.

Hawkins was booked by Bankes for a foul on Loovens, with Curtis and O’Nien also getting a ticking off.

Duncan Watmore did well down the Pompey right on 36 minutes, only to see his cross deflected into Craig MacGillivray’s arms.

And the Black Cats had the best chance of the half just before the break, with Watmore squaring for Lynden Gooch, whose shot was saved by the legs of MacGillivray.

Half Time: Pompey 0 Sunderland 0

It had been entertaining fare before the break, but the action moved up a few gears immediately after the restart.

A brilliant ball from Curtis was latched on to by Hawkins, who charged into the box and was unceremoniously hauled down by Loovens.

Bankes immediately pointed to the spot and life soon got worse for the Sunderland defender, who was shown a red card.

It was EVANS who stepped up to take the penalty, with the skipper slamming the ball right into the top corner.

And it soon got even better for the league leaders after CURTIS collected a header from the hard-working Hawkins.

It looked like crossing for the well-placed Jamal Lowe was the better option, but instead he drove the ball into the net from a tight angle.

But the action was not going to let-up and Sunderland reduced their deficit when O’Nien turned home a cross from Max Power.

It was soon the Blues back on the attack and an effort from Evans was deflected narrowly past the post.

The respite was a brief one for the visitors, however, as they fell further behind from the resulting corner.

McLaughlin did well to keep out a firm Hawkins header, but Sunderland could not get the ball clear and Ben THOMPSON’s drive was deflected into the roof of the net.

The opportunities kept coming at both ends, with another attempt from the on-loan Millwall midfielder going wide, while Gooch blazed over for the Black Cats.

MacGillivray then took a heavy touch from Brown’s back-pass, but recovered well to deny Gooch.

Hawkins almost capped his impressive display with a goal on 73 minutes, sending his header from a Curtis cross inches past the post.

He received a standing ovation when being replaced by Brett Pitman soon after, with Evans having already been withdrawn for Ben Close.

And the two substitutes combined to put the ball in the net late on, only for Pitman to be flagged offside.

Pompey looked likely to add to the scoring in the closing stages and Close had a shot saved by McLaughlin.

But the crowd did not seem to mind settling for just the 3-1 win, as they exited the ground full of festive glee.

Pompey (4-2-3-1): MacGillivray; N.Thompson, Whatmough, Clarke, Brown; Naylor, B.Thompson; Lowe, Evans (c) (Close 72), Curtis (Green 87); Hawkins (Pitman 81)
Goals: Evans 48 (pen), Curtis 53, B.Thompson 63
Booked: Hawkins, Curtis, N.Thompson
Subs not used: Bass, Walkes, Burgess, Wheeler

Sunderland (4-1-2-1-2): McLaughlin; O’Nien, Loovens, Baldwin, James; Cattermole; Honeyman (c) (Maguire 58), Power; McGeady (Sinclair 78); Gooch, Watmore (Ozturk 49)
Goals: O’Nien 57
Sent off: Loovens
Booked: Honeyman
Subs not used: Ruiter, Oviedo, McGeouch, Maja

Referee: Peter Bankes

Attendance: 19,402 (2,637 away fans)

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Ticket News

Capacity Crowd For Sunderland Game

Ticket exchange is now open

14 November 2018

Fratton Park

Fratton Park is now full to capacity in the home sections for the festive League One clash with Sunderland.

A large crowd will be in place to watch Kenny Jackett’s side take on promotion rivals Sunderland on Saturday, December 22 (3pm kick-off).

The ticket exchange is now open for season ticket holders who are unable to make the game.

They can make their seat available to fellow Blues fans and receive part of the sale price, with proceeds received by the club being donated to the academy.

Once a buyer is found, the seller’s season card will be disabled for the game and the purchaser has the option to receive a paper ticket or eticket.

The season ticket holder will receive a £5 credit in their online ticketing account, which can be used towards the renewal of their season ticket.

Any credits received up to May 5 2019 can be used towards the purchase of a 2019/20 season ticket.

If the season ticket holder does not renew their seat for the 2019/20 campaign, all ticket exchange credits will be lost.

Supporters who want to attend the Sunderland game are advised to continue checking our eticketing site for any additional seats that become available.

Ticket Exchange Q&A – selling tickets

Q. How do I post my ticket for sale?
A. Online by selecting ‘manage my tickets’ for the relevant fixture and agreeing to the terms and conditions of sale, then clicking ‘post’ tickets. You will receive confirmation by email that your ticket has been listed for sale.

Q. How long does my ticket have to sell?
A. You can select a time for your ticket to be sold by. If not, it will automatically be set to 1pm on the day of the fixture.

Q. Can I check the status of my posted seat(s) online?
A. View your ticket exchange account by entering your email address and password in the eticketing site. Under the ‘Account History’ section, select ‘Ticket Exchange’.

Q. Can I post tickets on behalf of friends and family?
A. Yes, but please ensure that if you are posting tickets on behalf of another season ticket holder, they are part of your online network prior to the process.

Q. What happens if my ticket sells?
A. You will receive email notification if your ticket is bought. Your season card is deactivated for the match you have selected to sell as soon as someone buys the ticket. Your account will be credited with £5 to use towards next year’s season ticket.

Q. What happens if my ticket does not sell?
A. If your ticket does not sell by the time you selected (or by 1pm on the day of the match if you did not select a time), then the ticket is taken off sale. You will receive email notification that your ticket did not sell and it is available for you to use for that match.

Ticket Exchange Q&A – buying tickets

Q. Who is eligible to use the new ticket exchange service to buy a ticket?
A. Any Pompey supporter.

Q. How do I buy a ticket via the ticket exchange?
A. The easiest way is online here, but you can also contact the Anson Road ticket office, either in person or by calling 0345 646 1898.

Q. What will I be charged to use this service?
A. There is no additional charge on top of the standard booking fees that are in place for online and telephone sales.

Q. When will the ticket exchange service be available?
A. The ticket exchange will only be used for certain fixtures once all tickets have been sold. In the event of this happening, an announcement will be made on the website.

Q. What happens after I have purchased a ticket?
A. You will receive a confirmation email containing the relevant seat information along with a ticket via the delivery method selected.

Q. If I purchase a ticket via the ticket exchange but am no longer able to attend the match, can I get a refund?
A. Unfortunately, refunds will not be issued.

Q. Who do I contact if I have a problem?
A. Call the ticket office team on 0345 646 1898 or email

Tickets purchased via the ticket exchange are subject to the Ground Regulations and Terms & Conditions.

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