Date: 21st February 2010 at 9:21am
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Go out with a bang we said, let’s get a win and make a fight of it we said, this is a MUST win we said, well bugger, Pompey went down the worst way possible, even the most blindly optimistic fan must have stepped through the gates of inferno after that match.

Let’s face it, if you could sum Pompey’s season up in one match this would be it, denied by an incompetent linesman in the first half, plenty of effort but little creativity, we conceded from a set-piece and lost to a sucker punch, sound familiar?

Pompey went with one up front again, a tactic I am not fond of, I’m sure Avram will say it was a front three, but Piquionne was by himself with Quincy and Dindane in wide positions, the diamond formation worked lovely when we had Benjani up front with pacy players in the team to support him, but Diop is a carthorse from midfield, not a Diarra or Muntari.

I am confident in the fact that 90% of people reding this have sen the game now, either live, both at the match or on telly, or on MOTD, you will know it was not much of a spectacle.
Pompey can not be accused of lack of effort, they cannot be accused of that for the most of the season, perspiration is there, inspiration is not. We as fans have been patient with is quite obviously a hamstrung side, quite a few pockets of turned on Mark Wilson of late, quite harsh when you consider he is still learning his trade, if Pompey still had Kaboul, distin or even the scrooge that is Campbell, he would of been eased into the defence at right back rather than pitched straight into the centre, his every mistake is highlighted, quite harsh on a young lad trying his best in dire circumstances.

Anyway, the first half was flat and devoid of quality, Pompey tried, Stoke contained and relied on set-pieces as we knew they would, Delap launching in bombs from the touchline and Sidibe and Fuller trying to force the ball home, that is their style, one I hate but for them it is effective and keeping them up.
20 minute passed befor a worthwhile effort on goal, Belhadj firing narrowly over with his right boot after cutting in.
Then came Piquionne’s ‘goal’ he was played in and lifted over Sorensen, only for the the lino (is it the same one every week, short and dumpy?) to raise his flag.
Quincy showed moments of threat, but more often than not his secon touch was too heavy and he was dispossed, O’Hara was trying but was not finding his top form, and Diop was plodding as usual.

We took the lead however after Quincy managed to fire in a shot that Sorensen squirted out again, Piq got there first and forced home from a tight angle, we were one up in a game of little chances and half-time was approaching.
There was just time for James to keep out Tuncay and we could all have a bovril.

Second half and Pompey came out of the blocks flying, Kanu who had replaced goalscorer Piq won a corner after we bombed forward only for it to come to nothing.
Next up came Pompey’s achilles heel moment, a corner came over and Huth got up above a flat footed Wilson and nodded home easily, Stoke were level and Pompey had done little to stop it.

The rest of the half was proper scrappy, no team threatened and it took a red card for Wilkinson to liven it up, his first yellow was deserved but the second was quite harsh as he tussled with Dindane, Pompey had quarter of an hour to unlock a stubborn Stoke defence, but did we have the keys?
Avram went fro it by having Dindane, Webber, Kanu, Utaka and Quincy on the pitch, but we could not muster a single decent chance, O’Hara wasted a few free-kicks by firing into the wall, but that was it.

Then came that sucker punch, Fuller got fre on the right and squirmed over a cross for Diao to fire home his first goal in about 33 years, the game was gone and so was Pompey’s tenure in the Premiership, maybe not mathmatically, but in reality.


31 Replies to “The Fat Lady…. she is singing”

  • i thought you played well , as the commentry team kept on insisting that from 20 – end of first half you never loked the team in last place

  • got to say that i totally agree with your thoughts on wilson – i find it incredible that we are so quick to turn on ‘1 of our own’, ok technically he has not come through the entire academy at pompey, he left manyoo as a 15 or 16-year-old didnt he but he is still young, in terms of experience – and in age really. i am still not convinced that he is a central defender, more a defensive midfielder, being thrown in at the deep end will ‘probably’ make him stronger in the long-run tho…

  • Not so much out with BANG!! more of a Fizzy POP….the lads tried I give them that, but when you haven’t got the rub of the green.

  • Not sure about singing but certainly throwing up all over us. Look so many of us that have given so much over so many decades, I am completely drained by it all. If they are going to shoot us, please get on with it.

  • dont start the wilson debate again, if we had the three defenders you mentioned, wilson would not have been eased in, he would never have played for us. probably would have been loaned out and then let go into the mediocre oblivion of where he deserves to be (and where at best our club is heading). championship standard at very best and he along with us will probably never grace the premier league again.

  • Biggest game of your season….managed 15,000 home fans – that’s half what saw MK Dons lose at ST Mary’s. Reality time.

  • Even I (yes me!) a blindly optimistic fan stepped through the gates of inferno.. and admitted premiership defeat ….Still.. As long as we have a club to support that’s the main thing

  • Rug the problem is Wilson always looks a step or two off the pace of the Premiership. He might be alright for the Championship but I just don’t think he has the poise or the guile for the top level.

  • hmm maybe a good thing, he needs to learn to jump tbh or at least grow an extra foot, scum where so dangerous from long balls in and actually anything in the air in the box because Wilson just can’t get to them, he’s great on the ground but aerial just can’t cut it. Its a shame cause the kids got potential, but if we had Rocha in there or anyone with a bit more aerial presence then we wouldn’t have conceded the 1st goal and if the lino wasn’t as blind as a bat could have quiet easily gone on to win it 2-0 or so.

  • After watching the game I have now resigned myself to championship football next year. Well atleast i hope we’re playing next year! The game summed up our season for me, lots of effort but not converting our chances. Lets hope we get a decent new owner and start winning some games, even if it is in the ‘Fizzy Pop League@’

  • ” O’Hara wasted a few free-kicks ” an understatement. Was he successful with any free kick or corner? That game was a chance lost to be back in the mix again. Depressing!

  • V annoying.

    Particularly disappointed with the attendance as well.

    I know times are tough, but 17K for what might be the last game at Fratton is pathetic.

  • I simply cannot understand why O’Hara keeps on taking free kicks when he never threatens the goal. I’ ve said this before Kaboul left; we are going to score less from set pieces, and having corner after corner usually results in nothing. That is what we were doing yesterday! Regarding Wilson; he is a young lad who is giving his all. I would not attack him, there are others who are expierenced and are not doing the best job possible. Dindane is only one of them

  • Although totally depressed there’s still the thought in me that we’re only 2 points behind where we were in the Great Escape 1.

  • Really surprised. After the 1st half performance, I didn’t think there was any chance you would lose this one. You do seem cursed this season.

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