Recent months have been depressing to say the least at Portsmouth Football Club but at last we can report some good news. In fact Rug just beat me to it with his earlier item but this is a Vital Pompey only story.
In an exclusive interview this morning with Vital Pompey, Tug Wilson, Training Ground manger told of his delight at being back in his old job despite it only being to the end of the season. The deal to bring back the four members of staff made redundant a fortnight ago was engineered by David James and Hermann Hreidarsson. Other players have joined them and Tug asked me to pass on his sincere thanks them all and the fans that had been in contact with him and others offering their best wishes.
It was a chance meeting with Tug who has for many years travelled on the same train as me and I must admit it was good to see him so happy. I do hope that those involved realise just how happy they have made him. Tug admitted though that his new ‘celebrity status` had rather embarrassed him especially after his interview on Sky Sports News.
Tug was appointed eight and a half years ago by Martin Murphy after he was impressed by Tug`s work with AFC Portchester including organising a huge tournament at the former training ground at HMS Collingwood. He told me that Joint Administrator, Mike Keily, had visited the facility and was surprised by the huge nature of it. There are regularly seventy staff there including forty players and it is a very busy place. Not this morning though as Tug added, with the Chelsea game tonight only the injured players were due in.
It seems therefore that the redundancies were carried out purely on a cost basis and without any thought as to the effect they would have on the running of the club. The previous day at Linvoy`s Football night in the Victory Suite it had been suggested that the players both past and present might look at the idea of a testimonial match at the end of the season for the staff involved.
With that I offered our best wishes to Tug and his staff and he was off on his bike with a smile as broad as the Eastleigh shopping centre where we met.
To read the full story of Linvoy`s night and all the other news join me on Sunday for Toast.