Posh need to peak at the right time
Correct score: Posh to win 1-0: 7/1
Draw: 0-0: 10/1 1-1: 11/2 Plymouth to win 1-0: 10/1
2-2: 12/1 3-3: 50/1
First goalscorer: 9/2 Marriott (Posh), 5/1 Morias (Posh), Carey (Plymouth), Jervis (Plymouth), 6/1 Maddison (Posh), Lloyd (Posh), Taylor (Plymouth), Blissett (Plymouth), 8/1 Doughty (Posh), Edwards (Posh), 10/1 Forrester (Posh), Lameiras (Plymouth), 12/1 Da Silva Lopes (Posh), Sarcevic (Plymouth), 14/1 Fox (Plymouth), Ainsworth (Plymouth), 16/1 Tafazolli (Posh), Bradley (Plymouth), Chettle (Posh), 20/1 Hughes (Posh), Baldwin (Posh).
8/1 to score the first goal.
Manager Grant McCann is determined to ensure Posh peak at the right time this season.
In each of the last two campaigns, Posh have been League One promotion challengers at Christmas before fading away badly in the second-half of the season.
But McCann is confident that won’t happen again. The club have great faith in the work done with the first-team squad by head of physical performance Ben Mackenzie.
Posh are raring to go in Saturday’s League One opener against newly-promoted Plymouth at the ABAX Stadium, but McCann is more concerned about long-term prosperity.
“Of course we want to hit the ground running,” McCann stated. “But I’d much rather have a strong finish than a strong start.
“It will be great to get some early momentum, but we’ve faded badly in the last couple of seasons and that’s something we’ve planned against this term.
“Sheffield United won League One last season and yet didn’t start particularly well.
“We certainly have a tough opener. Plymouth have momentum from last season and they’ve only lost one pre-season game this summer. They have recruited well in the summer and I can’t see them struggling.
“They are very well managed. They will be very well organised and they will have the backing of a big away following.
“I’m just hoping we get a big turnout from our fans as well. They know how impor- tant they are to us and I think they will be well entertained this season.
“It’s the first time for a while that we’ve started the season at home so it’s a good chance to show the fans what we are about.”
Posh have everyone available with the exception of new striker Ricky Miller who starts a six-game suspension for a biting offence while with Dover last season, and injured midfielder Jermaine Anderson who has resumed training with the senior players.
New 17-year-old striker Idris Kanu will be in the squad as will experienced central defender Steven Taylor.
“Taylor looked great in the friendly at Cheltenham last weekend,” McCann added.
“He was strong defensively and composed on the ball.
“He looks fit and he should be a great addition to our squad.” Posh last hosted Plymouth in a League One match in April, 2011 when goals from Ryan Bennett and Craig MackailSmith secured a 2-1 League One win in a match between teams heading in different directions.
Posh: Lewis, Little, Lee, Zakuani, Bennett, Weslowski, McCann, Rowe, Boyd, Ball, Mackail-Smith. Subs used: Frecklington, Davies, Tomlin.
Posh have won six of their 11 Football League meetings with Plymouth at London Road. Plymouth were last victorious in a Championship fixture in 2009 when Mackail-Smith’s goal proved a consolation in a 2-1 defeat. The first meeting between the clubs at London Road took place in April 1975 when Posh won 1-0 thanks to a Tommy Robson goal. That result stopped Plymouth winning Division Three and prompted the visiting fans to launch a nasty pitch invasion.
Scored a Posh goal against Plymouth.
Ryan Bennett Plymouth’s best signing of the summer was that of ace midfielder Graham Carey on an extended contract. The free-kick expert with a wand of a left foot scored 15 goals as Argyle won promotion from League Two last season.
Other heroes of that campaign include goalkeeper Luke McCormick and hard-as-nails central defender Sonny Bradley.
Jake Jervis a powerful forward who contributed 12 goals to the League Two promotion campaign last term. Plymouth signings in the summer include midfielder Ruben Lamieras who scored against Posh for Coventry last season and solid Millwall defender Gregg Wylde. Giant centre-back Aaron Taylor-Sinclair moved to Home Park from Doncaster. It’s been a quiet pre-season for newlypromoted Plymouth.
They finished their summer friendly programme with a 3-0 defeat behind closed doors to Dutch side Twente. They also drew 0-0 in a behind closed doors friendly at Feyenoord during a training camp in Holland.
Goals have been hard to come by for Argyle this summer They also lost 1-0 to Cardiff City, but won 1-0 at Torquay. Saturday is Argyle’s first League One game for six years. Dour Derek Adams steered Argyle to promotion last season. He’d previously managed Ross County in the Scottish League for seven years, apart from a brief spell as assistant boss at Hibs.
Leo Da Silva Lopes could be employed as a wing-back for Posh against Plymouth.