PAUL COOK has set an 11-win target to get Pompey promoted.
The Blues boss is looking to break the 80-point barrier associated with going up in League Two.
And he feels 11 maximums will be enough to get his team over the line.
A 2-1 success over Leyton Orient on Saturday moved Cook’s side to within two points of the division’s top three.
With 20 games to go, the manager reckons a win return to put them on 78 points – supplemented with a couple of draws – will do the trick.
He said: ‘We are on 45 points today, so you’re probably looking at 11 wins to go up.’
Securing 80 points last season would have seen Pompey finish just sixth in the table.
That’s after an unusually high tally was collected by the teams at the head of the division.
Accrington missed out on goal difference to Bristol Rovers after landing 85 points.
That represents a high water mark over the past 20 years, however.
The total to make the top three has swung between 78 points (Port Vale 2012-13 and Wycombe 2008-09) and 85 points (Bury 2014-15, Swindon 2006-07 and Stanley 2015-16).
With the Blues averaging 1.73 points a game at present, they are virtually on target to hit 80 points if they maintain the same points-per-game ratio.
Last season the likes of champions Northampton and Bristol Rovers put together impressive winning runs to secure promotion.
Cook doubts whether the magic number to secure a place in the top three will need to be as high again this time around.
He added: ‘I just can’t see it being near what it was last season.’
– JORDAN CROSS