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Match Previews

Portsmouth v Exeter City: Match preview

26 January 2017

Tis: "We mustn't underestimate ourselves"

Exeter City manager Paul Tisdale said his players should not fall into the trap of underestimating their own abilities as they head into tough  couple of fixtures in League Two.

The Grecians, on the back of a nine-game unbeaten run, face Portsmouth away on Saturday followed by a home fixture against Wycombe Wanderers on Tuesday, January 31.

Both teams are above City in the table and on pretty decent runs of form themselves. 

“This is a particularly challenging week or two, with the teams we have coming up, but we have to be careful we don’t become too concerned about their abilities and forget our own,” said Tis. 

“That is an easy trap to fall into as people keep mentioning that we are playing Portsmouth and then Wycombe. We have to remember that, maybe, they have got one or two concerns about playing against us also. 

“We will be respectful of the opposition and be objective and practical about what they can do in the game and what we have to do, but we shouldn’t underestimate ourselves and we should try and win every game.”

City go into the game against Portsmouth, with only Lee Holmes and Tom McCready out injured. The return of some key players has really helped the Grecians over the past couple of months.

“I would say it is the most obvious and most important factor of all,” said Tis. “When you consider our early season woes and then our current success over the last couple of months, it coincides with the arrival of the cavalry. 

“I have not experienced – and I said it at the time – so many injuries in one go that we had through August, September and October. 

“At the time, it probably looked like every week I was saying the same thing and making excuses, but it was true. Is it any wonder that we struggled? 

“You probably heard a lot of interviews earlier in the year when I was saying that we had a good group of players and that we just needed fit ones, a bit of continuity throughout the squad and it would breed some success and that is what we are getting at the moment. 

“I am pleased with what we are doing. Let’s hope we can keep the fit and on the pitch and we can maintain our form.”

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