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Fixture News

Jackett Searching For Super Start

Boss previews 2018/19 opener against Luton

3 August 2018

Kenny Jackett
Photo: Joe Pepler/PinPep

The friendly fixtures certainly served a purpose as the squad worked their way back to full fitness.

But the rehearsals have now finished and Saturday will see a packed Fratton Park ready to roar Pompey on in their League One opener.

Luton are the visitors to the south coast for the first match of the 2018/19 campaign, which has attracted a capacity crowd.

And Kenny Jackett wants to see his side make the most of their home advantage to get off to a positive start.

The Blues boss said: “It’s certainly exciting at the beginning of a new season as you wait for the real stuff to get underway.

“Luton is a big game and when you include the cup tie against AFC Wimbledon, three of our first four fixtures are at home, so we have a chance to establish ourselves at Fratton Park.

"Fratton Park has a special atmosphere and the fans will be looking to get behind and encourage the players."

Kenny Jackett

“It’s a big opportunity for us and one we want to take. We want to establish ourselves in these opening weeks.

“Fratton Park has a special atmosphere and the fans will be looking to get behind and encourage the players. It’s a challenge we have to take up.

“We want to try to get one of those three promotion spaces and if we get into the top six then it will be an improvement.

“But every side will be saying the same thing – and rightly so. At this stage you should have aspirations to be successful.

“There will be bumps in the road and you don’t know when they’ll come along, but the more preparation you do, the more you can get over them.”

Pompey face a Hatters outfit who ended a four-year stay in League Two by securing automatic promotion last term.

Jackett said: “We played them in the cup last season and suffered a narrow defeat – there were a lot of chances at both ends.

“They’re coming off the back of a very good campaign and have spent recent years in the National League and League Two – it’s too low for the size of the club.

“So they’ll be looking to continue their momentum and are definitely a side we’ll be respecting, while concentrating on our game.”

Pompey are without Dion Donohue and Jamal Lowe against Luton, although Jackett is confident the pair will be available soon.

He said: “Dion’s doing very well and seems to have made really good strides in getting over his illness.

“The couple of players we’ve got missing will be back within a fortnight and so that’s encouraging news.”

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