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League Two Lowdown: Plymouth

8 August 2013

Our look at Pompey's 2013/14 opponents continues with the Pilgrims

Meetings with Pompey
Plymouth have a long history with Pompey dating back to their first Southern League meeting at Fratton Park in September 1903, a game the visitors won 2-1.

Daniel Cunliffe scored in that match and added two more when the Blues beat their dockyard rivals for the first time the following year.

One of the more memorable clashes occurred in May 1983 when Alan Biley’s winner clinched the third division championship for Pompey at Home Park.

Chris Clark was the only player to score against the Blues in their 2008 FA Cup triumph, giving Argyle the lead before goals from Lassana Diarra and Niko Kranjcar secured victory for the hosts at Fratton Park.

The most recent meeting was at the start of last season when Pompey had to field a bunch of teenagers and assistant manager Ashley Westwood in a League Cup tie which Plymouth won 3-0.

The Blues have won 24 of the 52 encounters, while Argyle have triumphed 21 times.


Plymouth history
The club were formed as Argyle Football Club in 1866 and played their first match against Cornish side Caxton.

They then folded in 1894, but were resurrected three years later before adopting their current named after turning professional in 1903.

Plymouth were elected into the Football League in 1920, becoming founder members of the third division and finishing 11th in their first season.

They won the title and promotion to Division Two in 1930, while manager Bob Jack resigned in 1937 after 27 years In charge.

Argyle’s highest finish to date – fourth in the second tier – was achieved in 1953 and the club reached the semi-finals of the League Cup in 1965.

In 1973, a friendly against Santos – who included Pele in their side – drew a crowd of 37,369 to Home Park and they reached the last four of the League Cup for a second time the following year.

Their semi-final fortune failed to improve as they lost to Watford in the FA Cup in 1984 and Burnley in the Division Three play-offs 10 years later.

Then, in 1995, Plymouth were relegated to the fourth tier for the first time in their history. They soon went back up and then down again, but were in danger of going bust by 1998.

However, they clinched the fourth tier title with a record 102 points in 2002 and were promoted again in 2004 to reach the Championship.


Plymouth present
Argyle’s stayed in the Championship for six years, with a highest finish of 11th in that time.

But by 2010 they were in League One and were served with a winding-up order, entering administration and falling to the foot of the table.

A second successive administration followed and Plymouth only preserved their Football League status last term with three games to go, eventually finishing one point clear of the drop.


Information for Pompey fans
Blues fans who travelled to last season’s League Cup clash will be aware that travelling supporters are housed in the Barn Park End.

The normal allocation for away fans is 1,300, although this can be increased 2,022 if the demand is there.

The Britannia pub is a 10-minute walk away, although this usually gets very busy on matchdays. There are plenty of pubs to be found in the city centre.


Travelling by road
Postcode: PL2 3DQ
Distance from Fratton Park: 171.9 miles
Estimated drive time: 3 hours 31 minutes

Follow the A30 onto the M5 and then the A38, from where the ground is well signposted. On entering Plymouth, turn left onto the A386, keeping on the left when the road splits in two. After around a mile you will see the ground on your left. There is a large free car park at the ground, which operates on a first in, first out basis. The car park is normally full by around 2.30pm, but there is some street parking if you drive past the ground and away from the city centre.


Travelling by train
The journey from Portsmouth stations lasts around four hours and 45 minutes, with changes at Salisbury and Exeter. A standard adult fare is £59.50 and the station is approximately 1.5 miles from the ground.


League Two fixtures
Plymouth v Pompey: Saturday, October 12 (12.15pm)
Pompey v Plymouth: Saturday, May 3 (3pm)

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