Middlesbrough v Portsmouth preview

Team news for Saturday's Championship clash between Middlesbrough and Portsmouth at the Riverside Stadium.

Last Updated: 01/10/10 at 09:45

Hughes: Has completed a two-match suspension

Hughes: Has completed a two-match suspension

Middlesbrough defender Julio Arca is struggling to make the clash.

The 29-year-old Argentinian limped out of the 3-1 midweek defeat at Derby with a groin problem and is a major doubt.

However, midfielder Kevin Thomson has a chance of making the squad after returning to training following his recovery from a fractured fibula.

Manager Gordon Strachan will hope to have options with his forwards with Scott McDonald looking to shake off the virus which kept him out of the game at Pride Park, where Kris Boyd scored on his return to the team alongside Leroy Lita.

However, Justin Hoyte (hamstring), Jonathan Franks (herniated disc), Willo Flood (knee) and Rhys Williams (pelvis) are still out, while loan signing Matt Kilgallon has returned to parent club Sunderland with a back problem.

Richard Hughes returns to the Portsmouth squad for the trip.

The midfielder has completed a two-match suspension for his red card against Leicester in the Carling Cup.

Hughes is unlikely to go back into the starting line-up, though, with Pompey having won both games in his absence to lift themselves out of the drop zone.

However, there is plenty of room on the bench with boss Steve Cotterill only able to name five substitutes against Bristol City on Tuesday night.

Cotterill's loan move for Tottenham's Kyle Naughton remains on hold so rookie Joel Ward continues at right-back.

Defender Hermann Hreidarsson (Achilles), striker Danny Webber (cruciate) and youngsters Tom Kilbey (knee) and Billy Goddard (shin) are still on the sidelines.

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Championship Fixtures

Saturday, 19 April 2014
12:15
Leicester v QPR
15:00
Barnsley v Leeds
Middlesbro' v Millwall
N Forest v Birmingham
Watford v Ipswich
Monday, 21 April 2014
Birmingham v Blackburn  
Brighton v Blackpool  
Burnley v Wigan  
Derby v Barnsley  
Ipswich v Bournemth  

Sky Bet Championship

Position Team P GD PTS
1 Leicester 42 35 90
2 Burnley 43 32 86
3 Derby 43 29 78
4 QPR 42 15 73
5 Wigan 42 17 70
6 Brighton 43 12 65
7 Reading 43 10 64
8 Ipswich 42 8 64
9 Bournemth 43 -1 62
10 Blackburn 43 3 61
11 N Forest 42 4 59
12 Middlesbro' 42 10 58
13 Watford 41 16 57
14 Bolton 43 -2 55
15 Sheff Wed 43 2 53
16 Leeds 42 -9 50
17 Huddersfld 43 -9 47
18 Birmingham 41 -10 43
19 Doncaster 43 -28 43
20 Charlton 42 -24 42
21 Blackpool 43 -27 42
22 Millwall 42 -30 40
23 Barnsley 42 -28 39
24 Yeovil 43 -25 37

Updated Fri, 18 Apr 2014

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