Back Page – Match Report
At the end of a momentous week for Portsmouth Football Club perhaps it was asking too much that the team could travel west and take three points from St James` Park, Exeter.
It was a game that Pompey bossed for long periods but had to be content with a Jed Wallace equaliser fifteen minutes for time to show for their efforts. It is of course to early to take anything from one result but a point away from home is always a good result even though Exeter were below strength and one of the favourites for the drop to the Conference.
Ricky Holmes was missing through injury and he is a key man creating things going forward and I still believe that Awfs has not really worked out what is his best back four – I get texts telling me ‘Webster is no right back` and ‘Chorley and Jack will never hit it off together. Well these are decisions Andy must make in due course and the three home games in next week will give him and opportunity to assess his squad. I also gather that Nigel Atangana impressed after coming on for his league debut.
Pompey (4-2-3-1) Jones; Webster, Chorley (c), Whatmough, Shorey; Dunne, Hollands; Wallace, Westcarr (Atangana 60), Barcham (Storey 72); Taylor (Bird 88)
Goals Wallace 74
Subs not used Poke, Wynter, Robinson, Awford
Fans “want major reform of football”
A definitive survey demands FA intervention, criticises poor finances and calls for fan involvement in clubs.
In a poll published today by Supporters Direct, and undertaken by leading market research company ICM Research, fans of English clubs have backed Supporters Direct`s call for fan involvement in the ownership of football clubs, with nearly 40% agreeing that football rules need to change to enable it.
Other results showed that only 18% of fans believe that their clubs are financially well run, backed up by the 100+ insolvencies in the top five divisions of the English game since 1992. There was also overwhelming backing for fans to be ‘formally consulted on any changes relating to their football club (for example name, shirt colour, badge or location of the football club), with 77% agreeing, an area that Supporters Direct led a session on at the Supporters Summit a fortnight ago (26th July) at Wembley Stadium, an issue of serious concern following the cases of Hull City, Cardiff City and Coventry City.
Also very significant was the recognition that ‘football is broken` and that ‘The FA needs to intervene to fix it`, chiming with much of Greg Dyke`s video message to those attending last week`s supporters` summit, where he also said that the FA Council fails to represent the game as it is – adding as he did that fans were ‘under-represented`.
The headline results:
The running of the game/governance
? 44% of fans agree that “Football is broken and The FA needs to intervene to fix it”
? 49% agree that supporters and their representatives should be more involved in the running of football”
Clubs and how they should be run and owned
? Only 18% of fans said that their clubs were financially well run
? 77% of fans agree that they should be formally consulted on any changes relating to their football club
? 38% agree that football supporters should be entitled by football regulation to a role in the ownership of their football club
? 54% of fans agree that “Football clubs should be run as a combination of a community business that balance results on the pitch with work in the local community”
Speaking about the results, Robin Osterley, CEO of SD, said: “This definitive poll – the most comprehensive ever undertaken – of the supporters of English football clubs about how they view the running of the game, shows irrefutably that the average fan does care that their clubs are run badly; that they do want to see the FA get control and run it in the interests of all, not just a minority of clubs or officials at the top; and that they believe that part of that should mean a role in the ownership of their clubs.
“We want this to be a signal to all those who share the same views. Whether those in the game`s governing bodies; politicians frustrated at the slow pace of reform that they have laid out again and again; or those in grassroots football suffering from poor decisions a local level. There is now a critical mass of people who want change, and we can, working together, achieve that. This is an opportunity that we must seize.”
Next Week`s opponents
On Tuesday Peterborough United come to Fratton Park in the League Cup first round tie. The two clubs first met in the FA Cup back in January 1961. It was the Posh`s first season in league football and they were to be crowned Division Four champions at the end of it.
Peterborough had strangely been drawn on the south coast in both the first and second rounds winning at Dover and Torquay respectively but it was the third round draw that excited their fans. They poured into the city in their thousands and I can clearly remember they were armed with ‘Up the Posh` stickers which appeared on road signs all over the place.
Pompey were struggling towards relegation and it was no real surprise that the visitors would triumph 2-1 in front of over 27,500 fans. For the record the late Alex Wilson scored the home side`s goal. The two sides would then meet again in the third division the following year.
Saturday sees Cambridge United visit the Park in the opening home league game of the season. United are of course back in the league after a nine year absence and are managed by former Pompey defender Richard Money.
The two clubs have met eight times in the league with the first meeting back at Christmas 1977 at Fratton Park. This was another Pompey relegation season this time from the third division but a season high league gate of 13,152 would watch a Pompey fight back from 2-0 down.
Those two goals were scored by a man who would six years later become a Pompey legend, Alan Biley. The Pompey defence including future England centre half Steve Foster could not contain the blond bombshell and it was one way traffic before the break. In the second half however Pompey hit back and another legend Dave Kemp pulled one back before John Ruggiero, on loan from Brighton, levelled from the spot.
United`s next visit to Fratton Park was memorable for the home side as Mark Hateley score a hat-trick in a 5-0 thrashing.
There is a link between the two games I have highlighted here and that is Jimmy Dickinson. He played in the Posh games and was manager when Biley ran amok.
Just a note to Rug following a comment I made in the early hours of Saturday morning in the article telling the world that Pompey had hit their Academy fund raising target – remember seven hours later the News said we were approaching it!!
I said that those of us sat together in Eastney were Real fans and Rug suggested that I was having a pop at those living outside the City etc. Well of course I wasn`t just that the four of us can total more than two hundred years supporting Pompey. I think I was getting a bit emotional (and tired too). Interestingly that became the top story on NewsNow too!!