Football

Pompey defender in FA Cup fitness race

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Defender Tal Ben Haim remains a "big doubt" for Portsmouth's FA Cup semi-final against Tottenham at Wembley, according to first-team coach Paul Groves.

Pompey are already without Hermann Hreidarsson and Danny Webber, who both suffered serious injuries during the 2-0 defeat by Spurs at White Hart Lane in the Barclays Premier League on Saturday.

Although Ricardo Rocha, Tommy Smith and John Utaka have all returned to training, it looks like Avram Grant will have to do without Israeli Ben Haim, who is battling a groin problem.

"Tal has been to see his national team doctor, he will be a big doubt," Groves told the Portsmouth News.

"A lot are coming on to their rehab work, but he is looking increasingly doubtful for the semi-final.

"Marc Wilson has a hamstring injury and has started his rehab. You would like to think he has a chance. The same goes for Nadir [Belhadj].

"It was a freak with him. He doesn't miss training and works fantastically hard. Hopefully he will be back next week (from a thigh strain)."

Groves continued: "John Utaka has started training, so has Tommy Smith and so has Ricardo. They are the pluses.

"The others are coming along. Kevin-Prince Boateng has started running and is doing well regards his rehab.

"Hassan Yebda has started running and is moving along. Papa [Bouba Diop] sustained a knee injury. He has started running, so we have one or two making their way back."

Pompey were deducted nine points for going into administration and their relegation could be confirmed this weekend, should they lose to Blackburn and other results also go against them.

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Topics:
Portsmouth
Football
FA Cup
Tal Ben Haim

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