Date: 29th January 2009 at 11:21pm
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Richard Hughes has understandably, and rightly, hit out at Paul Merson following the criticism levelled at him both in a written column and during his punditry ahead of the meeting with Villa on Tuesday.

Merson singled Hughes out as a player that should not have been given a new contract as ‘he was not good enough to get in the side when he was there, so his signing of a new deal is a sign of the problems we are having now’…

Staying here for some 6-years or so is evidence enough that he belongs here for a reason! Also, it might be a crazy thought, but maybe, just maybe Hughesie has improved as a player over the years? A crazy thought I know, but maybe, just maybe something that might actually be the case!

This is how he responded to what was levelled at him, with him quoted on sky sports: ‘I have heard the comments from Merse and he has had plenty of time to come out and explain himself but I find it strange that he brought me into an article that wasn’t about Richard Hughes but was about Portsmouth.

‘If it wasn’t personal then I would have expected him to contact me but he hasn’t. Merse is working for the media. It is a game of opinion, I know, and he is paid to give his.

‘In this case no-one asked what I was like as a player, he just brought me in to it. He is wrong to do that but it does not surprise me that he has not shown a bit of class because it is something I don’t associate with him. What he has apparently said is not only wrong but inaccurate.

‘He said I couldn’t get in the team but in fact I played the first seven or eight games the year we won the Championship but then got injured and it was difficult to get back in with a torn hamstring.

‘When I did come back I chopped the top of my finger off and it was also difficult to play when I was in hospital.

‘I hope Paul does have something to say to me because I’ve tried to ring him and he seems to have changed his number. However he should know mine because it’s always been the same and I would like the chance to talk to him.’

Well said, I think that the former Pompey captain needs to take his head out of his arse and wind his neck in!

I know that Hughes is not the greatest footballer in the world, hell I am sure that the player himself knows that – he, and we, know he is limited in what he can do, but he does not try to do anymore than he can. He will always gives 110%, never shirks his responsibilities and you can rest assured that he will always do a job when called upon, even if he goes weeks or month between games. For me he is a fantastic squad player to have around and I am happy to have him here, and I fully back him in what he has said.

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Saviola a no go
Also, Tony Adams has confirmed that a possible deal to bring Javier Saviola to Pompey on loan from Madrid is off, as he wants players that are ready to get straight into action and not take time to get their fitness levels right or acclimatise to the premier league.

Fair play to him, I have to admit that I did not like the thought of not signing him just because he might not be quite 100% match fit – for me this would not have taken long, but Adams is the manager and I back his decision. To be fair the Argentinean might have taken a long time to adapt to life in England, something we do not have time for.

If Adams only wants players with premier league experience/ability to go straight into the side, and only if they are better than what we have, so be it – I like the way he is thinking out his moves, not just jumping into them as a man who sat in his seat prior to him would have done, it is always shoot first ask questions later with Jamie’s Dad…

It is now said that full attention will now be turned towards Benjani, with a £3m approach set to be put forward to Citeh in an attempt to re-sign him?

PLAY UP POMPEY!

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