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Monday 18 December 2017

Points on pitch Pompey's sole focus

Portsmouth first-team coach Paul Groves insists the team are not paying any attention to the points that could be won or lost off the pitch over the next few weeks, and are solely focused on gaining more points on the field, starting at home to Birmingham tonight.

Rock-bottom Pompey took a break from Premier League action on Saturday to beat Alex McLeish's side 2-0 and book their place in the FA Cup semi-finals at Wembley against Fulham or Tottenham.

Another victory over the Blues would on paper leave Avram Grant's men just two points from safety, but with the club almost certain to be hit with a points deduction for going into administration, hopes of survival could be swiftly dashed.

Administrator Andrew Andronikou has made no secret of the fact he is determined to save Pompey from a points penalty.

But there is also a chance the club's decision to go into voluntary administration will be ruled invalid by the courts.

Groves admits he is unsure whether Pompey will retain their points, so he is determined to pick up another three against the Blues.

He said: "Obviously the powers that be will take the decision. We will not have any control over it.

"We'll just do what we can on the pitch. That's why the game is so important to us tonight."

One decision Pompey benefited from this week was FIFA's continued reluctance to introduce goal line technology. Birmingham were left seething on Saturday after television cameras showed a Liam Ridgewell header clearly crossed the line late on, before being hooked clear by goalkeeper David James.

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