Hermann: Tie is a potential banana skin

HERMANN Hriedarsson today admitted tomorrow's return to Portman Road is a potential FA Cup banana skin for his Premier League club Portsmouth.The 33-year-old made 128 appearances for Ipswich Town - including six in the FA Cup - during a spell with Blues from August 2000 to March 2003.

By Elvin King

HERMANN Hriedarsson today admitted tomorrow's return to Portman Road is a potential FA Cup banana skin for his Premier League club Portsmouth.

The 33-year-old made 128 appearances for Ipswich Town - including six in the FA Cup - during a spell with Blues from August 2000 to March 2003.

Having just been voted Icelandic player of the year for the third time, the no-nonsense defender is looking forward to returning to Portman Road for the first time since his £900,000 move to Charlton.

“Ipswich have such a good home record that we know it will not be easy,” said Hreidarsson.

“Our away form is very good and we have collected some excellent scalps on our travels, but it is a game where we could slip up if we are not at our best.”

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Pompey, who have won eight of their last nine away games, beat Ipswich 1-0 in a third round tie at Portman Road in January 2006.

And Hreidarsson is banking on them gaining another third round victory tomorrow.

“We are not going to win the league so the FA Cup is something we are going for,” added the player who joined Town for £4million from Wimbledon.

“We may not have been picking up results at home recently but we have not been playing badly - having too many 0-0 draws and not creating as many chances as we would like.

“I enjoyed my time with Ipswich and could see the potential that Jim Magilton, my former midfield team-mate, had to become a

manager.

“He is doing a very good job and has certainly got Ipswich playing well at home.

“I was pleased to see the draw and still keep in touch with players from my Ipswich days, including Fabian Wilnis who has spent time with me in Iceland.”

Hreidarsson is the third most capped played in his native country with 75 Icelandic appearances, and having recovered from a torn groin he is now playing regularly for Pompey at left back.

Midfielder Richard Hughes is also anticipating a close game as the Hampshire side make another bid to win a

trophy they last won in 1939.

In the Pompey team that won at Portman Road two years ago, Hughes said: “It should be a cracking game.

“We're in the higher division, but they have home advantage and that is a real leveller.

“Not that we're contemplating defeat, but it wouldn't be the biggest upset of the day if Ipswich won. That's how tough a game it is for us.”

Recalling his last visit, Hughes, 28, who is battling to overcome a hip injury, went on: “We won, but they made it very difficult for us.

“We got a goal in the first half through Dario Silva, but we were really hanging on at the end.”

Uruguayan Silva left Portsmouth soon after the game and later lost a leg in a car crash.

Portsmouth have Sean Davis suffering with a foot injury, Pedro Mendes has had a bout of flu, Noe Parmarot is

battling with a hamstring injury and goalkeeper David James' understudy, Jamie Ashdown, is out with a shoulder problem.