Back in January, I wrote an article and asked how we could make Fratton a fortress again.
Worried by the flat atmosphere, I suggested we all pledge what we could do together to bring back the noise we are famed for.
Thanks to all of you who gave your comments and suggestions. And my apologies for how long it has taken to follow them up. But what a lot has happened since then!
On the field, we’ve started scoring again. Six in our last three outings at Fratton. We’ve beaten Bolton, Derby and Plymouth and drawn with Chelsea, losing only to Man Utd at Old Trafford on a day when Ronaldo was at his irresistible best.
Off the field, we’ve signed Diarra, Defoe and Baros. And by all accounts the atmosphere is back at Fratton. I say ‘by all accounts’ because I’ve had my longest absence from Fratton for five years, missing three games on the bounce. I missed Derby as I was in Barcelona on my best mate’s stag do and missed Chelsea due to being best man at his wedding last weekend. And what with promising my wife I wouldn’t go to cup games unless they were ‘really special’, I didn`t make it to the Plymouth game either!
While in Barcelona we went to the Nou Camp for the visit of 6th placed Racing Santander. If you’ve not been, it really is a amazing stadium. But I have to say, for a top-flight match with so much talent on display, the atmosphere was disappointing and not a patch on Fratton.
So maybe I was worried unnecessarily by the recently flat Fratton crowds. Maybe it wasn’t the beginning of the end for the famed atmosphere, as more and more fair-weather fans came along and diluted the noise. I have been worried about the number of new faces around me who sit in silence, but maybe I needn’t have done. Maybe it was the simply the case that all we needed to do was get a goal under our belts and it would be back to normal again.
I certainly hope so. And although I hope we don’t find ourselves with our backs against the wall to escape relegation as we have in recent seasons, perhaps the chase for a European spot will give the crowd enough reason to really get behind the team for the run in.
So, with things looking bright again, now doesn’t seem like the right time to launch a campaign to bring back the noise and make Fratton a fortress once more.
But your ideas are on the stocks, ready to go if the atmosphere starts to dwindle again. So be vigilant, get behind the boys; encourage those around you to join in. And if you spot anyone eating a prawn sandwich, raise the alarm immediately!
Written by NorthStandDan.
The views within this article are the views of the individual who wrote and submitted this piece, sometimes solely theirs. They are not necessarily shared by the Vital Pompey Site Journalists.