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Karl Previews Pompey

Karl Robinson looks ahead to Saturday at Fratton Park

31 October 2019

Forget Sunderland and Manchester City and focus on Fratton Park.

That's the message from Head Coach Karl Robinson as his side set off for the South Coast to take on Kenny Jackett's Portmouth on Saturday

"The Sunderland game is out of our minds already" Karl told iFollow today, adding that a change of routine over the last couple of days had helped his side prepare:

"We have done a few things to shake things up and change the norm- a change of times, routines that sort of thing; to do things that are slightly different and make the players have to concentrate. If you expect the norm then your mind can wander. We are playing Portsmouth away. It’s the best game we can have right now, although Kenny will probably be thinking it’s the best game Portsmouth can have right now because we will be tired. What a game to have."

Rob Hall joins a lengthy injury list after rolling his ankle on Tuesday and there are doubts over Chris Cadden and Tariqe Fosu as well...

"Malachi Napa, George Thorne, Ben Woodburn, Jamie Hanson, Rob Hall now with an ankle injury, Chris Cadden, Cameron Brannagan and Tariqe Fosu didn’t train today. Woody was our star signing of the summer, Cads and Brannagan have been two of our best players and Tariqe has lit the place up. But we will have 1,600 fans there and I am sure we will find something in our tanks.

"Tariqe and Cads may possibly be OK but we have to manage Tariqe because he has never played this amount of football and I made the mistake of over playing him before and lost him for six weeks. I think people saw in the second half on Tuesday that he hit a brick wall, but he is absolutely loving it. He will definitely travel: we are taking 20 players, but people may have to be patient while we manage the game load.

"Portsmouth will come out all guns blazing and will try to outrun us and get us on the backfoot and get their fans behind them. We know that, there will be no surprises and we have to be ready. But we are in a great run of form and are loving what we are doing so we are really looking forward to it."

United have the prospect of a Carabao Cup quarter final against Champions Manchester City in December, but Karl will put it to the back of his mind as he concentrates on the league

"I think everyone was looking at Colchester to maybe give us a good chance of getting through, or maybe Man City, United or Liverpool away" he said of today's draw. "But it’s at home, probably on the Wednesday and they play on the Friday so they get four or five days to prepare for us!

"It’s almost an impossible task, but you know that ‘impossible’ bit? Nothing is impossible…"

See the full interview in iFollow where the Preview Show features Rob Hall and Special Guest Jamie Brooks

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