Date: 13th August 2010 at 4:11pm
Written by:

A question that many people have asked in recent times is, ‘where is Rocha John Rocha?’

Well, the answer that most of us could give when asked – at least I know the one I gave – was, ‘who knows!’ We knew that he was offered a contract, although it ‘seemed’ he was keeping his options open, which is fair enough I guess…

The offers ‘do not’ appear to have come in for the 31-year-old so, according to what Steve Cotterill has told The News, the defender has asked to come back to the club: ‘Ricardo was offered a deal last season to come back and I think it got turned down. Then there were some negotiations a little while ago when they needed to reach a certain level, to which they couldn’t agree.

‘Then four or five days ago, Ricardo’s come back to us and said he would be interested in coming back to Portsmouth.

‘That is okay if he comes within what we can afford to pay him.

‘But if he wants to come back to us on what he wanted four or five weeks ago it’s pretty simple – he won’t be coming back to us.’

When we first signed him I thought he was a complete donkey (although I think my new phrase will be a ‘complete Utaka’ from now on as that is a level of poorness to judge someone on!), but he turned things around and was one of the players that I really hoped that we could retain – so when he was offered a new contract I was pleased.

The ball is now in his court, he can take what he is offered and return, or he continues to sit on the scrap heap I guess – and Cotterill knows this all to well: ‘if we couldn’t afford it then, we can’t afford it now. But yes, it would be nice to have him back.

‘I’ve watched him, I know he’s a really, really good lad, a proper professional and he will welcomed back here by me, the players and the supporters.

‘But he’s got to come back in our wage structure because, probably, no wage structure has got us where we are at this moment in time.’

As said I like the guy, and thought his commitment levels shone through in the end last season with him putting his body on the line as/when needed.

Quite clearly he was looking for a better offer, and with this not coming he wants to come back – many would say ‘sod him’, and perhaps we should, but can we really cut off our nose to spite our face?

I would say to him, accept what is realistically within our budget then I am sure a deal can be done, and I would be happy for him to come back – if that cannot happen he fades away into obscurity…

PLAY UP POMPEY!

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