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New to League One: Portsmouth

3 June 2017

We finish our look at the newcomers to Sky Bet League One for the 2017-18 season as Portsmouth return to the third tier for the first time since 2012-13.

Pompey spent one day at the top of Sky Bet League Two, but it was the day that mattered as they emerged from the division as champions. They'll have to begin life in League One without the man that got them there though, with Paul Cook making the switch to Wigan Athletic at the end of May.

They began the campaign with two draws against Carlisle United and Crewe Alexandra before losing on the road at Morecambe - not the start you would imagine for the eventual champions of the division.

However, after the slow start, they soon hit form, beating Colchester and Exeter back-to-back before achieving a similar feat against Crawley and Wycombe at the start of September. Pompey then beat Barnet 5-1 before Doncaster - who were in a rich vein of form - lowered their sails by taking three points at Fratton Park.

Just one league defeat across November and December kept the side in a prime position towards the top of the division. They ended 2016 in fourth position, seven points from third and nine points from the summit - where they'd eventually end up.

Two wins and three defeats saw a mixed start to 2017 before Pompey really took a grip of the league, quietly cutting the gap to the top of the division.

In fact, they'd register ten wins from their final 12 games, whacking 31 points onto their tally. The 6-1 emphatic win at Fratton Park on the final day of the season saw them reach the top and crowned champions in front of their home support.

Like Plymouth, the Iron will meet Portsmouth for the first time since 2-13-14 when the teams were all in Sky Bet League Two. United were promoted that season and registered a double against Pompey, with Dave Syers getting five out of the seven goals scored against the side.

The two sides last met in League One in 2012-13 when both sides won 2-1 at home, while it was a Championship fixture back in 2010-11. Currently, the record is even with eight wins, eight draws and eight defeats from 24 encounters.


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