Portsmouth vs Sunderland - Brown and Pitman face fitness tests ahead of Sunderland play-off

Posted Wednesday, May 15, 2019 by PA

Portsmouth vs Sunderland - Brown and Pitman face fitness tests ahead of Sunderland play-off

Portsmouth boss Kenny Jackett will give Lee Brown and Brett Pitman every chance to prove their fitness ahead of Thursday night’s League One play-off decider against Sunderland.

Full-back Brown and striker Pitman missed Saturday evening’s 1-0 semi-final first-leg defeat at the Stadium of Light with Achilles and hamstring injuries respectively, but have returned to training, albeit away from the rest of the group, this week.

Jackett otherwise has a more or less full squad from which to choose with only defender Jack Whatmough and midfielder Dion Donohue missing.

The game will be the fifth encounter between the sides this season with Pompey winning at home and drawing away in the league either side of their penalty shoot-out victory in the Checkatrade Cup final at Wembley before the Black Cats finally got the better of them at the weekend.

Sunderland manager Jack Ross has a series of big decisions to make ahead of a game which could determine the success or otherwise of the club’s season.

Winger Aiden McGeady continues to be assessed on a daily basis as he attempts to play with a broken bone in his foot which forced him to withdraw for the first leg during the warm-up despite undergoing pain-killing injections.

However, striker Duncan Watmore could be included for the first time since he damaged ankle ligaments in March after making a quicker than expected recovery.

In addition, central defender Alim Ozturk is available following a successful appeal against the red card he received for a challenge on Pompey’s Gareth Evans on Saturday.

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