Date: 23rd May 2009 at 9:13am
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Paul Hart has praised the Pompey spirit that dragged us out of a relegation dogfight and to safety…

Particular praise has been given to David James, who has now successfully undergone his shoulder surgery, for his willingness to hold off on his operation until we were safe – having previously done this for more than a year, a decision that ‘typifies’ the spirit: ‘Jamo has put an awful lot at risk. He has been playing with that injury for such a long time.

‘I would think maybe it’s 18 months that it’s been there although don’t ask me what it is. I don’t know the medical terms but it has come to a stage when it had to be fixed or else it could have led to serious complications.

‘It’s typical of the spirit among the players here and the spirit from the entire club. Jamo has done everything for the fight here but they have all been immense and I have nothing but admiration for everybody.’

James will be back for pre-season training in July, well at least it is expected that he will be – as will Niko Kranjcar, who is actually back in full training now so should feature for Croatia in their world cup games coming up but Wigan is going to be too soon for him…

Another player who again played through the pain barrier was Dave Nugent, who will have another hernia operation this week – so his season is also over. I think this is the third time he has had to undergo this procedure in the past year, which is a concern and one that I think we certainly need to clear up for good. Maybe he needs to see another surgeon this time methinks!

We all know how much relegation would have troubled the playing side of things at Pompey, with many, many players likely to have left – more than probably will do anyway – and this would have also put paid to any chances we would have had of being taken over…

But Hart has also pointed out that it is just not people on the playing side of things that would have been effected by this, it would have been people behind the scenes, people not often noticed but people that play a major part in the operating of the club: ‘staying up has hopefully saved people’s jobs here, people whose jobs are not generally recognised outside the club. Going down to the Championship means tough decisions having to be made about jobs.’

Relegation would have been quite simply disastrous for us this season!

It is all very well saying ‘we could get back to the championship and enjoy it again’, ‘costs would reduce’ and so on, but the financial implications of dropping from the premier league with the debts we have round our necks could have killed us… With survival achieved and Sacha apparently doing all he can to help aid the sale of the club, ‘if’, as I feel we will, we can get this done we can get back on track next season.

I do believe the spirit is high, and a lot of togetherness pulled us through, which is all the more impressive seen as so many of these same players either will not be here next season as they will either be released or sold, so they could have thought ‘sod it’. Whilst I am annoyed that some clearly did have this attitude at some points, even long points, during the season in the closing stages most were fully united in what we were doing and this pulled us through.

Lets just hope we can have a fighting spirit next season, as we could very well need this again…

PLAY UP POMPEY!

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