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Repaying The Fratton Faithful

18 April 2014

Boss keen to reward supporters

Pompey’s players will be greeted by a packed crowd when they emerge from the tunnel before kick-off on Saturday.

Supporters have been quick to snap up tickets for the Bristol Rovers clash after seeing their side win three successive matches.

Triumphs over Newport, Hartlepool and Dagenham & Redbridge have helped ease relegation fears.

And Andy Awford believes his squad are fully aware of what they must to do reward the Fratton faithful.

The caretaker Blues boss said: “It’s been fantastic. They’ve bought into everything we’re trying to do and they get everything that goes on at Fratton Park.

“Since I took over, we’ve tried to give the players a better understanding of what the fans expect from them.

“They shouldn’t need motivating and all I’ve done is try to guide them in the right way and give them some structure to go out and express themselves.

“We want them to work hard, but also play with a smile on their face – winning games certainly makes that a lot easier.

“Confidence and morale are high and the dressing room is buzzing – it’s been a pleasure to work with them.

“It hasn’t just been about team spirit, though, because we’ve played some very good football.”

Bristol Rovers come to Fratton Park having won just once on their League Two travels this term and desperate for points to avoid the drop.

Awford said: “One more win should do it for us. The aim’s to win every game, but we just want to stay in this division.

“If results go our way on Friday then there is a scenario where we could be safe after Saturday’s game.

“But the important thing is that we get our own performance right and that’s what we’ll be focused on.

“We know what’s coming from Bristol Rovers – they’ll be strong and organised. But it’s more about what we do on the day in front of a fantastic atmosphere at Fratton Park.”

Wes Fogden, Romain Padovani and Adam Webster have all returned to training after missing last week’s victory at Victoria Road through injury.

Ben Chorley will also be available for selection on Saturday having completed a four-match suspension, but Andy Barcham (thigh) and Ryan Bird (groin) are still sidelined.

Pompey are 5/4 favourites with Sky Bet to beat Bristol Rovers. Open an account at www.skybet.com/pompey for great offers and to earn money for the club.

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