So the League season is done and dusted and now we have only one game to look forward to before the summer break.
They don’t come any bigger as the game is the FA Cup Final against Cardiff City at Wembley, the world’s oldest Cup competition dating back to 1872.
Well as promised to the throngs of members at the Milton Arms on Sunday here is the first of the Toast Cup final specials with all you need to know leading up to the big day.
Cardiff’s first appearance in a final was in 1925 when they lost 1-0 to Sheffield United. This was Wembley’s third ever-final tie and was the first to be broadcast on BBC Radio.
The Bluebirds were back however two years later for what was to be a very famous final. Their opponents were the mighty Arsenal who started as odds on favourites although they finished only three places above the Welsh club in the First Division. Cardiff put their faith in a black cat mascot called Trixie.
The game was a dour affair with defences in charge and then in the 74th minute Hughie Ferguson tried speculative shot looked which looked harmless enough. Goalkeeper Dan Lewis let the ball slip under his body and despite an effort to retrieve the ball he only managed to knock the ball into the net. So the FA Cup left England for the only time.
Lewis blamed his new jersey for the ball squirming through his grasp. Legend has it that since that day Arsenal keepers jumpers have always been washed before they are worn. Toast having watched the incident on Pathé news or the like believes bad body position was more likely at fault!!
That was Cardiff’s last appearance in a final, 81 years ago.
Pompey have reached the final on three occasions, losing 2-0 to Bolton in 1929 and 2-1 to Manchester City five years later, before finally lifting the trophy in 1939.
There will be a full article on the 1939 final in the next Toast Special.
Pompey and Cardiff have never met before in the FA Cup.
For some strange reason the Match Officials are all English (now surely the Welsh FA launch an appeal!!)
Referee: Mike Dean (Cheshire FA) Dean who is 39 would have been in charge of the 2006 Final but the FA felt his home town of The Wirral was too close to Liverpool for him to be considered impartial. In 40 games this season Mike has given 10 Red and 140 Yellow cards.
Assistant Referees: Trevor Massey (Manchester FA) & Martin Yerby (Kent FA)
Fourth Official: Chris Foy (Liverpool FA)
Cardiff: All black with a yellow trim
Portsmouth: All Blue – as we won the toss why not Blue Shirts, White Shorts and Red Socks we keep asking?
The long-range forecast is that the very warm weather will continue but on Thursday, Friday and over the weekend there is a chance of showers in the south, which could be heavy and thundery. The temperature will be around the seasonal high, which is 17ºC. It sounds a bit different from the Semi when of course a lot of fans froze their bits off and it snowed the next day!
Toast took a special look at the Trophy Final on Saturday to advise fans whether they will be sat in the sun or not. You all want to feel comfortable so sunglasses, hats and sun block are essential for those sat in section in lower tiers 101 to 115 and the front of upper tiers 501 to 515 if the sun shines!!
There is no news to hand on the fitness of the squad although no doubts rumours will start to spread soon. Toast believes the team will go away to a hideout somewhere to be away from the pandemonium building in the area.
For those travelling by train there are of course problems on Saturday. The majority of fans will be OK but the line is shut between Basingstoke and Woking so anyone using that line will have to transfer to a bus and add about 40 minutes to the travel time.
And finally we ask who will present the cup? Not sure, Toast has checked the Royal Court Diary and there are no entries for May 17th. But we have just heard a rumour it is someone who is terminally ill, which would be a nice touch.
If you have any questions or ideas for these specials let me know either as a PM or even in the comments below and readers if you are not a member of Vital Pompey, sign up now and give us your views.
Written by eastneydave.
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.