Pompey went down to an opening day defeat to satisfy the watching media, all those scribes who were witness to our demise will take great joy that we are one game down and pointless, but the goal was scored by a bloke who couldn’t hit a cows arse with a banjo last season, so he used his own to divert a speculative Dempsey effort past David James.
Al Fahim was witness to the game as he promised, the giant screen flashed an image of him and Storrie sitting side by side in the box, no evidence of any cheque signing though.
Pompey started the game with the back four of Kaboul on the right, Wilson and Distin in the middle and Belhadj as a marauding left/back/half, Midfield saw the Axe and Wardrobe accompany erm, the Coathanger?
Kranjcar was the man for the passes, while Utaka stood on the right with Piquionne the lone man up front.
Pompey certainly went at the game with verve, Piq was running the channels well, the midfield dogs of war were getting in the tackles, and our new look defence looked solid.
But after nearly quarter of an hour, fate rose its ugly head, Dempsey lined up a long shot and Zamora stuck out his ‘aris, the ball deviated more than a Tory MP with an orange in his mouth past a wrong footed Jamo, one down and pressure on.
Kranjcar was given 2 opportunities to test Scwarzer with a couple of well placed free-kicks, but only tested the patience of the Fulham fans behind the goal with two blasts over the bar.
Pompey exerted all the pressure, Belhadj had the chance of the game, a corner swung toward him with the goal gaping, but he got neither forehead or nose the ball and the chance was gone.
Andy Johnson found himself with a half-chance in front of the Fratton end, but he took a leaf out of Pompey’s book and skied it high into the atmos.
Second half and Pompey threatened again, Mullins and Piquionne conbined well to lay it off to Kaboul, but again he could only find a fan in the stand with his effort.
Johnson missed the chance of the game though, he seemed to give Wilson a little nudge as he went to head the ball, but as it dropped he had time and space, but again he too smashed it wide with the goal gaping.
Pompey were still trying to get back into the game, Mullins, who to be fair actually had a decent game, fired in what I reckon to be our only shot on target, it was blocked and landed at the feet of Wilson who fired yet again wide.
Kanu was on for Diop, but found little joy, then on came Nugent for the ineffective (once again) Utaka, Kanu laid off one for Nugent, but he showed all the composure of a toddler in a paddling pool and smashed it as hard as he could high into the Fratton end, chance gone again and so the match.
Not really seriously tested beside the fluke
Seems to prefer the full-back position as he can drive forward and support the attack
Class act and showed no signs of sulking for a move.
Still a fledgling but looked the part alongside a thouroughbred.
Showed some good skill going forward, but needs heading practice.
Out of the 3 ball winners was the most creative! He drove forward with the ball when possible and won a couple of good free-kicks.
Won a couple of great tackles, he is not a fans favourite, but with detemination and effort like this, they may well be won over yet.
Another ball winner, and he likes to put himself about, his effort will be needed.
Not his best game, never tested Schwarzer with 2 free-kicks, also shot over when well place second half, with a team with limited creativity he will need to perform better.
In 111 years of history, Pompey fans will forgive anything if the effort is there, sorry John but a kick up the pipe doesn’t seem to work, you must be on borrowed time unless there is a dramatic change.
Reminiscent of Benjani, but alone up front, and put in more crosses than any other player, trouble is ther was no-one to meet them
Hart has made Pompey hard to break down, but seems to have neglected shooting practice, the ball had more air time than Apollo 13!
Hodgson has built a decent side at Craven cottage, they had their luck today but should be challenging for a Europa spot again
Support your team was the plea, but quite a few people showed themselves to be Premiership fans rather than Pompey fans by voting with their feet, they will make an argument about why should be bother when the players have all been sold, but in times of hardship you need a Fratton roar to push the side on.