Both of these sides are starting to come back into form following mixed months. Portsmouth were coming alarmingly close to the relegation zone after some dismal form, whereas Swansea’s play off push had come to a halt as they nearly beat a record for the highest number of consecutive draws.
The appointment of Tony Adams was met with a mixed reaction from the Pompey faithful. After relying on the experienced Harry Redknapp for so long, it was always going to be a big change when Adams stepped into his shoes. The early signs weren’t good either as Pompey went on some miserable form that saw them lose four league games on the bounce. Admittedly, they’re still not up to their usual flowing self but after beating Bristol City in this competition and then grinding out a draw at Tottenham, things look to be gradually improving for the Fratton Park outfit. They’re now up to 12th in the table but having won this event last season, Adams won’t need to remind his players on how important it is to progress here.
As for Swansea, they started their season very well considering they’d only just been promoted, yet that form soon tailed off. The Swans have proved that they’re a tough side to beat but perhaps they’re going a bit overboard on that approach, with Roberto Martinez’s men drawing no less than eight games on the trot. That run was ended with a victory over Burnley, which now pushes them up to 9th in the Championship and just four points from the play offs. They were another side who nearly succumbed to lower league opposition and some would suggest they were lucky to beat Histon 2-1 in the last round. The Swans were ahead for much of the game but there’s no doubting that Histon made it hard for them, yet Saturday’s opponents Pompey will obviously provide a much different threat!
As for team news, Tony Adams managed to bring in reinforcement this week with Jermaine Pennant winging in from Liverpool on loan. That move looks to be a shrewd one as Pompey are without a host of first team players already including Glen Johnson, David James, Richard Hughes and Niko Kranjcar. Visitors Swansea will welcome back Leon Britton who returns after completing a suspension. However, Roberto Martinez looks set to be without Thomas Butler who is struggling with a groin injury.
As for a prediction, we think this could be one of the few cup upsets of the day. Pompey may have got a couple of decent results in recent weeks yet are missing a lot of first team players and the jury is still out on Tony Adams. Swansea on the other hand have nothing to lose and under Martinez, they look to be going from strength to strength – 2-1 Swans.