A season which promised so much, yet produced little in terms of results comes to a close this afternoon, Pompey travel to Wigan, a venue where we made our great escape 3 years back.
08-09 was full of promise, we were in Europe for the first time, we held the FA cup, we had an all-England strike force, one of the top midfielders in the Premiership and a man about to cement the England right spot his own in front of the nations number 1 ‘keeper.
We had the darling of Croatian football and our owner seemed flush.
Come November however, and the brown stuff was everywhere, our talismanic leader had departed to a ‘big club’ our main goalscorer wanted to join him, and Real Madrid had come knocking for our jewel in the crown, a season that promised so much was stuck in a rut and as the credit crunch bit, Pompey slipped into a familiar routine.
Big Tony came into the hot seat, he was covered in bad luck and inexperience, and came to an unfortunate end.
Relegation became a real option, but Paul Hart and Brian Kidd came in, went back to basics and here we are, lower mid table with the possibilty of 12th spot to finish.
A season in a chapter.
Wigan Team News:
Wigan have gone into cruise control since hitting the 40 point mark, they could have challenged for Europe a while back, but in the time honoured tradition of Charlton fell away with 10 games to go.
Valencia has been the main man for Wigan this season, while Bruce admits he cannot hang onto the Ecquador man, a hamstring has denied him a farewell from his adoring public.
Serial injury man Kirkland has another back strain, Scharner a sore knee, and Zaki has returned home after looking the part for three quarters of the season.
Steve Bruce will be glad to see the back of the season now, but will hope his charges can produce a display for the fans and one of the best chairman in the top flight in Dave Whelan.
Player to watch: N’Zogbia
Always looked good with Newcastle and now performing his wing-play at Wigan
Pompey Team News:
Pompey have no Jamo after his operation, he is joined on the sidelines by David Nugent who is to have another hernia operation.
With a takeover on the horizon or just below it, our future is as clouy as Victorian London, if no-one comes in, players will depart, that is certain, if someone does come in we may well be able to hang onto the likes of Crouch and Johnson, but until that moment arrives, today could be a farewell for half the team.
Player to watch: Johnson
Could be a farewell from our multi-player of the season, if fit of course, he is our prize asset now and again time will tell.
Match Facts & Stats
Happy ground for obvious reasons, and only 2 defeats in all, the most recent being a 1-0 reverse 2 years ago.
Martyn Hickin (Chixalbury)
Last chance for Pompey points, but where will the league points go? Hedge a bet here.
Burnley at Home?