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This Week's Opposition: Shrewsbury Town

Easter Monday didn’t bring much hope for the Blues’ Play-Off march as we were goalless at home to Morecambe. Now looking to get goals in the net as we take on Shrewsbury Town. Pompey’s next opponent…

The Blues are still 5 points adrift from the top 6, though John Mousinho’s side still have 5 games remaining until the end of the season.

You get the sense that this could really be the last chance to turn things around… 

MANAGER

Steve Cotterill, former Burton Albion, Wimbledon, Brighton & Hove Albion and AFC Bournemouth striker manages the side. After a nine-year football career ended in 1996, he decided to take up football management. 

Cotterill also managed many other sides in League One and the Championship, beginning with Irish side Sligo Rovers before returning to his hometown club Cheltenham Town in 1997, where he guided the club from the sixth to the third tier in 5 years.

He moved to Burnley for 4 years, spent a short stint at Notts County and also spent a season with Portsmouth in 2010 as they struggled with financial difficulty.

Cotterill has also held roles at Nottingham Forest, Queens Parks Rangers, Bristol City and Birmingham City before taking over the managerial role at Shrewsbury Town in 2020.

ONE TO WATCH

Former Coventry City midfielder Jordan Shipley is certainly one to keep tabs on this weekend.

The 25-year-old signed a 3-year-deal at New Meadow in the summer, joining for an undisclosed fee from the Sky Blues, where he had graduated from academy level to become a pro in 2016.

So far this campaign, Shipley, who wears the number 26 shirt, has featured on 39 occasions in the league, scoring 4 and claiming 6 assists.

TOP SCORER

Defender Luke Leahy, who wears the number 3 shirt for the Salopians, is the leading goal scorer for the side so far this season. 

After leaving Bristol Rovers due to their relegation battle, he signed a two-year contract with Shrewsbury Town in July 2021.

This term, the 30-year-old has bagged 8 league goals from 38 appearances, as well as 2 in The FA Cup and 1 in the League Cup. 

CURRENT FORM

Steve Cotterill’s side have secured just 1 victory out of their last 5 games, with the last 4 matches ending in defeat 

Shrewsbury Town have scored only 1 goal during that run of 4 defeats and had 13 goals against them. Ipswich Town started their losing run by a scoreline of 2 goals to nil, before the Shrews then suffered a 6-0 defeat away against Charlton.

There was also a 3-0 defeat on Good Friday on home turf against Peterborough, which came before an Easter Monday defeat to Barnsley.

Currently sitting at 11th with 55 points out of 40 league matches played, they sit 2 positions below the Blues with 8 points separating the sides.

Shrewsbury have lost 2 players due to red cards in recent games - Tom Flanagan against Charlton and Ryan Bowman  in the 99th minute on Easter Monday.

The reverse of this fixture at Fratton Park back in October ended in a 1-1 draw, with a goal from Elliott Bennett in the 25th minute and an equaliser from Zak Swanson just 4 minutes later.

Can the Blues make a quick turn around and restore the faith in the fans to reach the Play-Offs? Or will Shrewsbury fully put a stop to their attempts?

With 6 games undefeated it is all to play for for the Blues.

Tune in for all of the unmissable action when on Pompey Live returns this Saturday (April 15th) from 2pm with Robbie James, Jake Smith and Jay Sadler covering the Blues' League One clash with Shrewsbury Town at New Meadow.

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