Date: 4th September 2009 at 11:03am
Written by:

Plenty of criticism has been put Pompey’s way recently, jim4pompey takes a look at some of this and gives his answers in ‘some of MY answers to a summary of criticisms’.

We’ve lost too many “quality players” in the likes of Defoe, Crouch, Krancjar and Johnson for a club that struggled to stave off relegation last year.

Well what most people fail to do is further analyse last year. Pompey were again looking like putting in performances under Redknapp that would see us cruise to a top 10 finish with those players. Then Redknapp left, dropped a huge confidence damaging bombshell hours before the Fulham game. If it wasn’t going to take half a season to recover from that, the appointment of Tony Adams (I for one thought it might have worked – but that shows my naivety and ignorance on the matter) didn’t help. And in the end Paul Hart and Brian Kidd were left with a depleted squad (remember that Defoe, Muntari and Diarra had already left now) to recover a total free fall.

He did. We are where we are so let’s move on.

No club can survive selling £90m worth of players in the Prem.

Well we would be probably still in the Prem with a 10 point deduction, still have sold off probably more players AND be certain for relegation to the Championship IF we hadn’t sold those players – let’s look on the bright side – we’ve already got 10 more points than if we’d plodded along like half these pundits seem to have expected us to do.

ALSO, and here is my biggest gripe, rather than what we haven’t got, we should be looking at who we are left with:

GK = England’s #1, an International Quality CB pairing, youth international RB and arguably one of the most exciting LB’s in the league. A wealth of international and Prem experience and depth in CM… granted RM is still a concern for me and one of England’s seriously promising talents on the left (the fact it’s only a loan until Jan suggests serious strengthen come then – or at least the possibility of it) – AND up front a strike force that has just as much chance of keeping us up as any in the likely bottom 10.

The players we have replaced these sales with are not the same quality

True, but compare our transfer dealings with any of Birmingham, Hull, Burnley, Wolves, Wigan, Bolton, Blackburn… I don’t see any of them pulling up trees and the majority have in my opinion weaker and shallower squads. At least three of those teams will have over the course of 38 games accrued less points than us.

We no longer want to be an Aston Villa or Everton or Spurs… or even a Fulham or West Ham. We want to be a Stoke or Hull or Wigan and be somewhere below mid table and above relegation. In my opinion we’ve actually attracted players these latter clubs would be jealous of. I really don’t see how being practically in the same position as most of the clubs coming up (there are three of them) in terms of having to build a new squad makes us automatic to go down. We’re still building from a firmer base.

All the problems with the takeover have left Portsmouth a club in turmoil

I think this is history now – and yet I don’t see anyone coming out and saying that now the new owner is in place, the books are balanced and now being a club with one of the smallest debts in the league that we are on course for an improved season?

Regardless of turmoil, basic financial necessity required those players to be sold, turmoil or not. Our season starts here – and lets face it – you could say that wiped 4 games off our season – but two of them we’d have been lucky to get anything from anyway.

Pompey are going to do a Newcastle

In short, wearing a Pompey shirt to a home game does not make you Mike Ashley or your club Newcastle. We haven’t appointed our coach as manager (that was last season – remember?) or indeed unsettled the management with a Dennis Wise style Director of Football. We haven’t spent the sort of £m’s on players – and even when we did, they were decent enough to win the FA Cup. We’ve been able to ship them out and bring in a strong survival focussed squad at the start of the season – something Newcastle NEVER did.

Pompey came close to administration

Paper’s love shades of grey – in business it just ain’t so. You either DO or you DON’T. We DIDN’T. With this type of thing it is win or lose… there is no draw. We won. We’re still in the division and we’ve bought more players than sold AND they’re players here to play for Hart and Pompey, not players that WERE here to play for Redknapp and now miss the old boy.

In short, having been around all the other relegation-avoidance hopefuls and seen the response to their transfer windows I can summarise the following:

1. There are very few players in any of the clubs around us I would swap for ours.

2. None of the clubs had “good” transfer windows and can only expect to be as good or worse than last year (I especially put Hull, Brum and Wolves in that category)

3. Pompey fans seem in general happier with the signings we’ve made than most other fans of theirs.

4. All of this other clubs do not have the quality nucleus of players or strength and depth through the middle of the park that Pompey do.

In short, once this new team gels my expectation is for us to be disappointed in missing out on a top10 finish (possibly even with a disallowed goal denying a uefa spot) at the end of the season. It will be an inexcusable failure for this bunch and PH to take us down, (I know its a cliché) but they ARE too good to go down.

Written by jim4pompey.

The views within this article are the views of the individual who wrote and submitted this piece, sometimes solely theirs. They are not necessarily shared by the Vital Pompey Site Journalists.

Bookmark and Share

Join the Vital Pompey Debate


12 Replies to “Some of MY answers to a summary of criticisms”

  • Great article Jim. We have turned a corner and we are so much stronger now. Whatever the press think, this can still turn into a good season – looking forward to it.

  • Survival is my hope – dissapointment at not reaching the top ten is almost guaranteed. It’s true that we’ve got no idea of how good we could be with all these new players but what are the chances of it turning out to be a ten ten team? Tiny. Lottery standard odds. Hart and Storrie will deserve the keys to the city if we survive.

  • Well Done Jim, agree with much! We’ve cut our cloth to a different standard, and hopefully the wage bill accordingly, this can only be good for our club. I’ve said it before, but I am a lot more hopeful now than I was even 2 weeks ago. Relegation with this squad should be a fear of the past, and I expect something around the 14th-15th mark ! PUP

  • You have put this into great words Jim. I could not agree more I return to the UK to take up the seat I have already paid for, in October and I can’t wait.

  • giving some attitude back – loving it! i personally feel that the three teams that came up will go down. ive been pretty spot on with my pompey predos so far but im going for a 1/2-0 to pompey (thats not half by the way lol) – its time for the club/players/fans to gel and stop talking about arry, gaydamak, crouch, defoe, etc etc they are GONE and hopefully NEVER coming back. we didnt really want most of them anyway!!!

  • thanks for chopping it Rug… it did run into two articles originally. But I was getting frustrated at the sheer mindlessness of some the comments coming from the pundits.

  • Great Jim.. Agree with a lot of what you said. I am sure that there are around 6 weaker teams than us. No need to mention. Unfortunately Arry’s is not one of these.

  • Well said Jim – it needed saying. Well, we’ve cut our cloth according to our budget and what more could we do? We would have been pillaried if we went bankrupt and are being pillaried now and will be if we survive or go down. Its all being part of Pompey. I don’t recall the Press ever admitting we had any stars or quality players until we had to sell them. Funny that.

  • Intresting article, at this moment in time I’ll take a 5th from bottom finish today; of course once we have won a few I will then be looking for a top 10 finish

Comments are closed.