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Portsmouth vs Sunderland: TV channel, live stream, squad news & preview

4:30 PM WAT 16/05/2019
Portsmouth League One
The Black Cats hold a one-goal advantage, but Portsmouth have the knowledge that they have already beaten Sunderland twice this season

Portsmouth will play host to Sunderland on Thursday in the second leg of their League One play-off semi final.

Pompey trail the Black Cats 1-0 going into the second leg, and will have to overcome this deficit if they hope to secure a place in the play-off final later this month as they try to escape League One after two seasons in the division. They are looking to continue the forward momentum the club have gained since fixing their financial issues in 2014.

Sunderland might have a goal advantage going into the game, but their away form nosedived at the end of the regular season, and their record at Fratton Park isn't fantastic either, with their last win there being in November 1997.

Game Portsmouth vs Sunderland
Date Thursday, May 16
Time 7:45pm BST / 2:45pm ET

TV Channel, Live Stream & How To Watch

For UK readers, get your fix on the latest football on TV here! US readers can find out what soccer is on TV here!

In the United States (US), the match can be watched on ESPN+. 

US TV channel Online stream

In the United Kingdom (UK), the game can be watched live on TV on Sky Sports Football. It can be streamed via SKY GO Extra.

UK TV channel Online stream
Sky Sports Football SKY GO Extra

Squads & Team News

Position Portsmouth squad
Goalkeepers McGee, MacGillivray, Bass
Defenders Walkes, Brown, Clarke, Burgess, Whatmough, Thompson, Casey, Haunstrup
Midfielders Naylor, Lowe, Curtis, Cannon, Close, Solomon-Otabor, Morris, Evans
Forwards Pitman, Hawkins, Dennis, Bogle

Defender Lee Brown will be hoping to play following an Achilles problem, while Brett Pitman is also dealing with a knee injury.

Possible Portsmouth starting XI:  MacGillivray, Thompson, Burgess, Clarke, Walkes, Naylor, Close, Lowe, Evans, Curtis, Hawkins

Position Sunderland squad
Goalkeepers McLaughlin, Ruiter, Stryjek
Defenders Matthews, Oviedo, Loovens, Flanagan, Baldwin, Ozturk, O'Nien, Dunne
Midfielders Leadbitter, Morgan, Cattermole, Maguire, McGeouch, Honeyman, Gooch, O'Nien, McGeady
Forwards Wyke, Watmore, Grigg

Duncan Watmore is currently out with ankle ligament damage but Alim Ozturk is able to play after the red card he picked up in the first leg was rescinded.

Possible Sunderland starting XI:  McLaughlin, O'Nien, Ozturk, Flanagan, Oviedo, Power, Cattermole, Gooch, Honeyman, Morgan, Wyke

Betting & Match Odds

Portsmouth are 6/5 favourites on Bet365  while Sunderland are 23/10 to win and the draw can be backed at 9/4

For more odds on markets such as correct score, both teams to score and booking points, click here

Match Preview

With everything to play for, this tie could either be an epic clash of two teams going full out to win it, or it could be a case of Sunderland parking the bus and trying to defend their one-goal advantage for the full 90 minutes. But, knowing League One, it is more likely that fans will get the more exciting option.

The ball is firmly in Sunderland's court with their one-goal advantage, and if they were to go and grab an early goal, it could end Portsmouth's promotion hopes there and then.

However, Portsmouth won the regular season fixture 3-1 at Fratton Park in December and a 2-2 draw turned into a 5-4 win on penalties in the Football League Trophy final at Wembley in March, while the two drew 1-1 in their last regular league meeting at the Stadium of Light in April.

But, despite Portsmouth’s previous victory this season, Sunderland look as though they have learned lessons after a keeping clean sheet in the first leg.

The stats from the first tie show just how tight it is in the race for the play-off final, with possession being spilt 51 to 49 per cent in favour of Sunderland, with the Black Cats also having one more shot on target than Portsmouth.

Ahead of the second leg, Sunderland boss Jack Ross told BBC Newcastle"I sensed prior to the first leg that the players were in a good place. That's why I was a little bit disappointed in the first half because I thought we were a little bit passive. Once we overcame that we were a little bit freer.

"Since then the players have responded and are desperate for the game to come around. They know what's at stake and are relishing it."

Portsmouth manager Kenny Jackett told BBC Radio Solent: "All our focus is on our own team and making sure we're right - we're certainly respectful of our opposition whoever they are and we certainly are with Sunderland.

"It's true that in recent games we haven't looked at full energy, but we're capable of producing our best on Thursday night.

"We've been honest enough internally to say exactly that.

"But the atmosphere and expectation inside the stadium, I think the players will pick up on that and are definitely capable of producing a performance that's at the top of their range."

The winners of this tie will take on either Charlton or Doncaster Rovers in the play-off final at Wembley on May 26.