Date: 6th June 2008 at 12:00pm
Written by:

Clearly it must be a slow news day for most of the papers over here as they are intent on running the ‘Lassana Diarra could move on this summer’ once again…

That in itself is kind of expected but the fact that there is an agreement in place meaning that ‘he can leave if a big club comes in for him’ talk again is being used as if it is something new makes a mockery of the whole thing – its not new is it, we knew this in January when he signed!

Yep, he might put himself in the shop window this summer at Euro 2008 and maybe a ‘big club’ will come in for him but that should rule out Spurs then…

And before we get all the slagging off, name calling and so on stuff I know Spurs are a big club – ‘they have the money, the fans, the history and this, that and the other’ but are they a big enough club in the league of ‘a big club’ Diarra could, or should move to?

Quite simply whatever way you look at it no. Spurs are not a top 4 team, they cannot offer him anything next season that we cant either and a move to anyone outside of the top 4 in this county would not be a move forward for him – simple as!

==========

Is Niko Kranjcar heading towards ‘burnout’ this summer? Well this is what Tony Adams believes with the Croatian looking like being a key man for his country at the Euros.

After 48 games for his club he is off for what he hopes will be 6 more at Euro 2008, something which Adams feels will be good for them but bad for Pompey, telling The News: ‘Niko’s got the European Championships, which won’t be a good thing for Portsmouth.

‘That’s on top of a long season – and as a player you need a long break in the summer.

‘We are going to have to look at him in pre-season and see what kind of schedule we can have him on. But we are a little concerned about him.

‘Niko’s actually played more than any other Portsmouth player this season. He’s played regularly in the league and Cup and then gone on international duty for another 12 games on top.

‘Someone like Sylvain Distin has missed two games all season but we’ve been giving him days off in the international week. Niko hasn’t had that.

‘I think you could tell that at the end of last season Niko had gone a little bit. It might have been fatigue, it might been a few things, but he looked tired.

At the end of the day this is the price you pay for being a quality footballer isn’t it? And the price we pay for having them! If you are one of the best you will play a lot of games for your club and clearly, and understandably your country will want you to play too wont they.

Without players of his quality we cannot move forward, so this is something that we will hopefully have to become used to as the better we get the more top quality internationals we will have, and that will mean they have tournaments every other year at the end of long hard seasons…

Its that double edged sword, but you cannot have one without the other – I know I would rather have international quality players of the likes of Kranjcar that can help take us forward over ‘decent’ players that will mean no improvement at the club.

==========

Kan-u believe it?

Surely Kanu is not going to be able to dip out of pre-season training yet again? But the suggestion is that maybe, just maybe he might be able to wangle this with the signing of his new contract likely to be ‘delayed’ until the start of pre-season at least…

With the Nigerian on a busy international schedule with his country and not expected back until early July this will mean a delay as Peter Storrie explained to The News, although he still expects a contract to be signed: ‘as far as I am aware, there are no problems with the contract and Kanu will sign it as expected.

‘At the moment he is away with Nigeria. I expect he will sign it when he comes back here for pre-season training.

‘Considering his international schedule, I would not think it will happen before then. But that is not a problem, we understand.’

To be honest I still cannot understand why it has been so hard for him to put his signature on the contract! If it is ready and he wants to sign it why has it not be signed – is it really that hard? Things cannot drag out again this summer like they did the last.

I guess one thing we know is if he does want to play a part of our tour to Nigeria he will have to play in pre-season after all – although he could still get away with missing a couple of games prior to this if he holds out…

==========

And finally, the plain stupid! Surely this is just plain stupid isn’t it?

Suggestions in The Sun – I think yesterdays though but I missed them at the time – are that Gary O’Neil will be used ‘as bait’ by Boro to lure Sean Davis to Boro this summer!

O’Neil has been unsettled since his move and the likelihood of a move away from Boro this summer is possible, but returning to Pompey must be pretty slim even if the chances of Davis going to Boro could be pretty good…

PLAY UP POMPEY!

Join the Vital Pompey Debate