Striker back in Pompey reckoning

Paul McCallum. Picture: Jordan Hampton
Paul McCallum. Picture: Jordan Hampton
  • McCallum returns after two matches on the sidelines
  • On-loan striker has made five appearances since January arrival

Paul McCallum is pushing for a Pompey recall at Morecambe after recovering from injury.

The on-loan striker was sidelined by an ankle complaint for the Easter football programme.

He has had an ankle issue but yesterday trained with the group for the first time

Andy Awford

But he returned to full training yesterday as he attempts to make the squad for the trip to the Globe Arena.

Regardless, he could find his way onto the bench blocked by Conor Chaplin and Craig Westcarr.

Goalkeeper Michael Poke is also back, having proven himself in the reserves on Tuesday.

The 29-year-old kept a clean sheet in the 1-0 win over Peterborough and, providing there is no reaction, he can be expected to be on the bench tomorrow.

However, Ben Chorley is still struggling with the back problem collected at Carlisle on Good Friday.

Definitely missing from the Shrimps clash will be Danny East (hamstring), Andy Barcham (knee), Jack Whatmough (knee) and Paul Robinson (broken cheekbone).

Meanwhile, Tom Craddock is not yet ready to feature, despite having trained with Andy Awford’s side yesterday.

Pompey’s boss said: ‘Paul McCallum was back in training yesterday, he has had an ankle issue but trained with the group for the first time.

‘Michael Poke is available as long as he doesn’t get a reaction to Tuesday, which we will assess over the next few days to see if he is okay.

‘With Ben Chorley, we will not be sure until after this morning. we will see how he is.

‘Danny East still has his hamstring problem and is not training.

‘I don’t know if he will play again this season, I would hope so. You’d like to think he would be available between now and the end of the season, but you don’t know.

‘I was hoping to see Andy Barcham back sooner, but we haven’t, so things do take a little bit longer sometimes and we have to assess that.

‘Tom Craddock trained yesterday morning and is back with the group.

‘He doesn’t train every day but also did on Monday. Tom has been involved in the majority of the stuff recently so we are hopeful he can get some game time between now and the end of the season.’

Awford’s men travel to a Morecambe side who have failed to win in their past five home matches.

A 2-1 victory over Mansfield at the start of February is their most recent at the Globe Arena.

Incidentally, Mansfield have a worse away points tally than the Blues this season.

Morecambe currently sit two places and one point above Pompey in League Two.

On Monday they picked up an impressive 2-1 win at Bury.