Pompey boss eyes return of missing men

Guy Whittingham. Picture: Joe Pepler
Guy Whittingham. Picture: Joe Pepler

Guy Whittingham is banking on his walking wounded returning to bolster hopes of bouncing back from successive defeats.

Yassin Moutaouakil and Patrick Agyemang joined Simon Ferry and Thery Racon on the sidelines ahead of last night’s 3-0 Johnstone’s Paint Trophy defeat at Newport.

In addition, Jed Wallace and Gavin Mahon were serving suspensions – the latter a three-match ban.

In their absences Whittingham made five changes, although his side still produced a dreadfully poor display at Rodney Parade.

Next up is a trip to AFC Wimbledon on Saturday with the League Two programme resuming.

And encouragingly Moutaouakil (calf) and Agyemang (thigh) are both pencilled-in to return along with Ferry (hamstring), while Racon (hip flexor) has an outside chance.

Whittingham said: ‘Thery is still not back fit, Patrick has got a thigh strain, while Yassin felt his calf a little bit on Saturday – so we don’t really want to be taking any risks.

‘Obviously Jed Wallace was suspended and so was Gavin Mahon, so there were going to be changes last night.

‘There are reasons for it but that doesn’t mean the ones coming in haven’t performed as you want them to perform.

‘Most should be back on Saturday, though.’

Meanwhile, Tom Craddock came safely through his first start since August with no reaction to his recent injuries.

Whittingham added: ‘With Tom it was an opportunity to bring him in.

He’s looked better in training and it’s almost like a pre-season for him.

‘Although, there wasn’t a great deal of service and the way we started meant we couldn’t get him into it.’