Portsmouth midfielder sends warning to Sunderland ahead of Fratton Park clash

Portsmouth midfielder Tom Naylor is expecting a 'massive atmosphere when the Blues face Sunderland at Fratton Park.
Portsmouth midfielder Tom Naylor is expecting a 'massive atmosphere when the Blues face Sunderland at Fratton Park.
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Portsmouth midfielder Tom Naylor has warned Sunderland to expect a 'massive atmosphere' when the Black Cats visit Fratton Park on Thursday night.

The Blues will have to overcome a one-goal deficit in the second leg of their League One play-off semi-final following Saturday's 1-0 defeat at the Stadium of Light.

But Naylor is confident his side can overcome the disappointment when the sides meet on the south coast - a ground where Sunderland lost 3-1 to Pompey earlier in the season.

“The play-offs have provided us with a second chance to get promoted and everyone’s focus is on that," Naylor told the Portsmouth website.

“It was a bit of a mix on Saturday. We didn’t create much and there weren’t many clear-cut chances at either end.

“Craig (MacGillivray) obviously made one great save with his nose and they scored a great goal, although there wasn’t really anything else.

“We just have to go out on Thursday and believe we can overcome that. I’m sure we can get a result and send us back to Wembley."

Pompey were four points clear at the top of League One after beating Sunderland at Fratton Park back in December, before a run of eight games without a win derailed their automatic promotion charge.

For that reason Naylor is determined to go up through the play-offs and not to blow a second opportunity.

“It would obviously be heart-breaking to miss out now after that spell we had when we were top of the league," he added.

“We all know what happened just after Christmas, but it’s still been a great season and we want to finish the job.

“This will be the fifth time we’ve faced Sunderland and we know what their strengths and weaknesses are.

“Everyone needs to be up for it on the night and I’m sure the atmosphere will be massive. They’ll get behind us from beginning to end."