Barcham set for Pompey reserve comeback

Andy Barcham. Picture: Colin Farmery
Andy Barcham. Picture: Colin Farmery

Andy Barcham makes his Pompey comeback for the reserves at Leyton Orient this afternoon.

The winger has been sidelined by a persistent groin problem, robbing Andy Awford of his services since the end of October.

However, he is included in a strong squad for today’s trip to Brisbane Road (1pm).

Barcham will get at least 30 minutes of action as the Blues seek to ease him back after his latest injury.

Regardless of the duration, it is another important step for the ex-Gillingham man who has started just two matches since February because of his groin injury.

He has, though, netted twice in three appearances for the reserve team this season.

With the Academy in action against Bolton in the FA Youth Cup this evening, they have no representatives in Paul Hardyman’s experienced 14-man squad.

That means no presence for Conor Chaplin, who netted for the second string against Newport County last week and made his first-team debut on Saturday.

Instead there is a mixture of players who were on the bench in the defeat to Accrington Stanley and those returning from injury.

In addition, top-scorer Jed Wallace can be expected to start, having been absent from the 3-2 loss through serving a one-match suspension.

Danny East and Adam Webster will continue as they return from injury after both turning out in the previous fixture against Newport.

There will also be an appearance for Jack Whatmough, who was not risked at the weekend following a knee problem which flared up at Tranmere last month.

Teenager Bradley Tarbuck, who is currently on loan at Dartford, returns to feature as the sole striker in the squad.

Meanwhile, Joe Devera makes his first appearance since a hamstring problem struck after the trip to Plymouth.

Interestingly, Alex Wynter is not included as the loan recruit continues to fade out of the first-team picture at Pompey.

With Awford possessing 
his maximum five in a 
match-day squad, the Crystal Palace defender has slipped out of the reckoning of late, failing to make the last two squads.

Although, he did play the full 90 minutes for the reserves in their 2-2 draw with Newport at Roko last week.

Pompey RESERVES: Poke, Devera, Webster, Whatmough, Shorey, East, Ertl, Wallace, Close, Atangana, Awford, R Holmes, Barcham, Tarbuck