ANDY CANNON is eyeing a nine-point haul in the next seven days to reignite Pompey’s hopes of automatic promotion.
The gifted midfielder arrived at Fratton Park from Rochdale 14 months ago and has been integral to Kenny Jackett’s squad this season. And the 23-year-old is very aware of the side’s reliance on their home form, insisting they can ill-afford to drop points on the south coast, especially with their struggles on their travels.
Games against Fleetwood, Accrington and Doncaster arrive in quick succession, and three straight wins would put the club right back into the hunt for a top-two spot.
“We’ve got three big home games coming up and we’ve got to be looking to win every one of them,” said Cannon, who has been nursing a glute injury over recent weeks.
“It’s the final stages of the season that we’re in now and so good results in these matches would set us up nicely.
“Our record at Fratton Park has been really positive and we want to make sure that continues, while also sorting out the away results. We’re pleased with the chance to get straight back out on the pitch after the result at the weekend and look to put things right.”
Jackett will also be hoping to take full advantage of his side’s home form, but the Portsmouth boss is refusing to take three points for granted against Fleetwood.
Joey Barton’s side are the form team in League One, unbeaten in 11 including wins over Peterborough, Ipswich and Pompey in the last three weeks.
“They’ve had a great run and, particularly since the turn of the year, their defensive record has been fantastic,” said Jackett, who will have Ellis Harrison available after the striker missed the 2-0 defeat against Peterborough on Saturday as his partner was giving birth to their first child.
“There are genuine aspirations for them to finish in the top six and then, ultimately, get into the Championship.
“Joey Barton has done a very good job there and he’s managed to build a really strong unit. They’ve got some good players.”
Jackett is likely to be without Ben Close who picked up an ankle injury at Peterborough and he must decide whether to hand Jack Whatmough a second start in three days after a year on the sidelines; Christian Burgess serving the second game of his two-match ban.
• Portsmouth have sold more than 50,000 tickets for the Leasing.com Trophy Final, but there are still seats available for the game against Salford on Sunday, April 5 (3pm kick off). Supporters can buy tickets online or by calling Ticketmaster on 0844 847 1898.