Front Page – Financial Fair Play Rules
The FFP rules have been invoked and a £49m fine has been handed out to both Manchester City and Paris St Germain. That of course will come out of the petty cash for these cash rich clubs but should they be allowed to just flout the rules. I gather too that their Champions League squads will be limited to twenty one.
Chuck them out of Europe, Chimes says, as these rules were intended to stop another Portsmouth happening and they MUST be firmly enforced. The Court of Arbitration for Sport hopefully will back up any UEFA decision although no appeal looks likely now.
Based in Lausanne the CAS has teeth and the best example of that is how they backed the Gibraltar Football Association over a long battle to become full members of UEFA despite huge pressure from Spain.
The other clubs guilty of breaking the rules were Russian sides Zenit St Petersburg, Rubin Kazan and Anzhi Makhachkala, Turkish clubs Galatasaray, Bursaspor and Trabzonspor and Bulgarian club Levski Sofia.
By the way where does all this money collected in fines by UEFA go to?
View from the Hump
Pompey announced the release of a whole swathe of players this week and one name stood out for fans as tinged with more than a bit of sadness.
Ashley Harris sprung onto the first team scene as an eighteen year old and became a darling of the Fratton End. In truth though he looked pretty at times he always seemed to struggle to go past a player. He had spells on loan but failed to impress and that was what eventually cost him.
In my opinion his best game was in the friendly with IFK; he looked an assured player spreading the ball around but he was surrounded by kids but could not reproduce that form when in first team action. As a local Purbrook lad let`s hope he can come back somewhere, sometime. Maybe at Gainsborough Trinity where I gather he has signed. For the records Gainsborough were a League club way back between 1891 and 1912.
Sad to note the passing of the Royal Portsmouth Dockyard League after one hundred and one years. Entries for next season had only reached five last week when the management committee decided to pull the plug and fold.
I suppose it is a sign of the times that men do not want to play football on a Saturday anymore as the demand for more 5 or 6 aside midweek games and the traditional game suffers. Not that long ago there were six divisions and the league tables seemed cover a whole page in the Sports Mail.
The Dockyard League will be sadly missed.
Over the years Toast has featured a number of different guest writers who have told their stories. The Sunday Chimes is pleased to announce a great new venture.
Regular readers will remember Ed`s stories of his trip to Bury, the world`s ugliest player amongst others. After a lot of cajoling and a few beers Ed has eventually decided to write his autobiography. The working title is ‘A Short story` and Ed as agreed that we can serialise it here on Sunday Chimes!
We have a man here who met all the great players in the 1950s and still has their autographs, parked fans` bike in his front room, was at the 1966 World Cup Final, met George Best at the Cliff; the list in endless and will make a good read.
So keep your eyes open for what will be an interesting and at time funny read. Ed is known for telling his stories around Eastney area and now you will be able to hear some of the best.
Back Page – XVII/V/MMVIII
Six years ago yesterday we all remember where we were whether we were lucky enough to have a ticket or had to watch on TV etc. How the old Toast team celebrated our Cup win six years ago.
We told you about lamppost banners in Time Square New York City advertising where to watch the final, fans watching in a bar in downtown Tokyo and meeting another fan in a Pompey shirt and how the celebrations were covered by Thai TV.
My favourite item and I know one Vital members enjoyed was a letter from Steve in Basingstoke to the FA complaining about ? well read it yourself.
In the preface to the letter Steve explains ‘I am not anti Welsh, I don’t even watch Anne Robinson on the Weakest Link. Some of my friends are Welsh and I’d even let my daughter marry one!’
At last the FA have agreed to support Cardiff City’s entry into the UEFA Cup next season in the unlikely event of them beating Portsmouth at Wembley on the 17th May. If the FA were not prepared to offer the reward of winning the FA Cup they should not have allowed them to enter the competition at the outset.
What I do find surprising is that Catherine Jenkins has been asked to sing ‘Land of my fathers’ along with ‘God save the Queen’. What is a nice girl from Neath doing at a Cardiff City fixture in England? Surely Shirley Bassey would have been a better choice?
Were supporters of Swansea City consulted over whether they wanted their anthem used at a Bluebirds fixture? I very much doubt it! Remember Cardiff City are a club side NOT the national team representing their country (very few of the team are even Welsh). Did not Wales cease to be a country in 1284 thanks to Edward I? If Wales is a mere ‘principality’, what are they doing with a ‘national anthem’? And why is it being performed at the English FA Cup Final?
Cardiff City FC did not request ‘Land of my fathers’ I gather they would have preferred Vera Lynn singing ‘There’ll be Bluebirds over ?’etc. ‘Land of my fathers’ was never played when the FA and Carling Cup Finals were played at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff so why now at Wembley of all places?
I doubt Taffy Risdale or Sham Hamman were all that bothered; they have no affinity with the Welsh nation other than seeing Ninian Park as little more than a financial or ‘development opportunity’.
My sympathy goes out to the lovely Ms Jenkins whose delightful voice is likely to be drowned out by 25,000 supporters from South Hampshire singing the more famous ‘Pompey Chimes’ or worse still joining the chorus with ‘Wales, whales, bloody great fish’!
The ‘Welsh Anthem’ is only being played because the English FA have pondered to the whims and egos of politicians such as Rhodri Thomas trying to win votes at the May elections. The next thing they will suggest is the incorporation of a Red Dragon on the Union Flag.
To avoid any further embarrassment of potential crowd trouble may I suggest that along with the UK National Anthem – ‘God save the Queen’ – the band of the Royal Marines strike up a few bars of ‘Play up Pompey’ or and an extract from Mike Oldfield’s sea shanty ‘Portsmouth’. Failing that perhaps the Royal Navy’s ‘Hearts of Oak, ready aye ready’. Better still how about a chorus of ‘All the nice girls love a sailor’ dedicated to Ms Jenkins herself?
Head of Protocol; Portsea Independence Party
The political wing of the Portsea Liberation Front.
For information: Portsmouth is situated on Portsea Island which unlike Wales is separated from the English mainland by clear, blue, salt water except at low tide when it is a bit muddy.
Incidentally picking up on the link to Tokyo before that letter someone put an idea in my head about asking fans for the photos of Pompey shirts in the most unusual location. I have been promised a picture of a game in Tikrit in Iraq where a whole side were playing in Pompey shirts.
Dig them out and share them with us all!