Peterborough United are ready to pile more pressure on Doncaster

Peterborough United manager Darren Ferguson has ordered his players to employ tunnel vision during their vital last game of the season against Burton Albion at the ABAX Stadium tomorrow (May 4, 5.30pm kick off).

Friday, 3rd May 2019, 10:10 am
Updated Friday, 3rd May 2019, 10:13 am
Posh star Lee Tomlin after scoring at Portsmouth. Photo: Robin Jones.
Posh star Lee Tomlin after scoring at Portsmouth. Photo: Robin Jones.

Posh have to win their final game to have any chance of contesting the League One play-offs. If they do secure three points they would still need Doncaster to drop points in their home game against Coventry to steal sixth place.

Sky Bet believe Doncaster are 1/4 shot to finish sixth with Posh at 9/4.

“We can’t focus on anything, but ourselves,” Ferguson stated. “That’s our challenge tomorrow. If we play like we did at Portsmouth on Tuesday, leave nothing out on the pitch and have a real go, the players will have no complaints from me even if it’s not good enough for us to overtake Doncaster.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Posh striker Ivan Toney celebrates his first goal at Portsmouth. Photo: Joe Dent/theposh.com.

“Let’s face it I’d rather be in Doncaster’s position. They just have to win a game of football and they’re in the play-offs. We could win 7-0 and it might still be irrelevant. Not that we will win 7-0 of course!

“But what the win at Portsmouth has done is shift things in a psychological sense. Doncaster probably thought we’d lose at Portsmouth and that they’d be in the play-offs already so they’re under a bit more pressure now.

“Our aim for a while has been to take it to the final day of the season and we’ve done that. If we repeat the performance level and have the same level of desire and determination we showed at Portsmouth we have a chance of winning again, but it’s a tough final game for us.

“Burton have played most of the top sides in League One recently and they’ve done well. I’ve seen their game with Luton from last weekend and they were very good and deserved to win.

Posh striker Matt Godden should be back in the squad for the Walsall game. Photo: Joe Dent/theposh.com.

“Our performance and result at Walsall last weekend showed us what will happen if we drop our standards.”

Posh have received a selection boost ahead of tomorrow with midfielders George Cooper, Louis Reed and striker Matt Godden all expected to return to the squad after missing the Pompey trip through injury and illness respectively. Centre-back Ryan Tafazolli reportedly played with a knee fracture at Portsmouth and is expected to battle through the pain barrier again tomorrow.

And Ferguson has also been encouraged by the return to form of two key men at Fratton Park.

“There was plenty to enjoy at Portsmouth,” Ferguson added. “But it was a particular boost to see Ivan Toney scoring again and to witness Lee Tomlin’s performance.

“That was the best Lee has played. That was the player I remember from previous times with the club.

“The return of George, Louis and Matt makes us stronger for sure. We will need 14 players on the top of their game tomorrow. Substitutes will be just as important as the 11 who start.”

If things do go their way tomorrow, Posh will host the first leg of the play-off semi-final on Saturday, May 11 (7.30pm) with the second leg scheduled for Thursday, May 6 (7.45pm).