Portsmouth - Can Davis earn a cup final start?
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Can Davis earn a cup final start?

Sean Davis came back in at the weekend for what was a rare start in recent months, and now he wants to stake his claim for an FA cup final place.

Sulley Muntari, Papa Bouba Diop and Lassana Diarra are all ahead of him in the queue but in all honesty and fairness Muntari and Diop for me probably would not get these places in midfield on merit at this point in time...

Muntari has shown flashed of brilliance this season but then he goes and makes the easy look impossible, its often from the sublime to the ridiculous with him - however I expect him to be much better next season, and far more consistent.

What Diop does he does well, but I just feel that maybe he is not offering enough to warrant a place as his form has not been that good for sometime has it in all honesty?

Diarra has been struggling with injuries recently, but when fit he is a shoe-in, and rightly so as he is one of the best midfielders of his type around full stop!

So on the face of it Davis has a chance but Pedro Mendes will probably also feel the same.

For me Muntari and Diop 'should' be worried for their places, but the likelihood is both will be in the starting 11 if fit and/or suspension free... I guess a lot depends on the formation played too, but again I am not so sure this will make much difference?

We could also have the scenario where Davis could be suspended, as a booking for him from any point now will see him miss 2 games - should this happen in the final games of the season - if he retains his place - then he will lose match time to impress Harry Redknapp, should this happen during the Boro or Fulham games then he will be suspended for the final regardless.

As said Mendes and even Richard Hughes will be feeling they deserve the right to play some part in the 16 at least but not all can, or will...

So to answer my own question 'Can Davis earn a cup final start?'

My own thinking would have to be no, that is not to say that I feel this is by rights the way it should be... Diarra - if fit - is safe, Muntari and Diop on current form I would say should worry but I think if they are available we will see both of these taking their place in the starting 11 on May 17th to be honest...


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The Journalist

Writer: pompeyrug Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Tuesday April 15 2008

Time: 11:39AM

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On current form and feelings, I would have Davis way ahead of Diop. I think the latter has struggled in the last few weeks, though I can't work out why.
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15/04/2008 12:20:00

I agree Tony. Davis or Mendes for Diop. Diop is so desperate to score a goal now he is hitting more and more ridiculous shots further and further off target. And Davis makes the midfield buzz when he is on form.
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15/04/2008 12:42:00

id like davis to start - id think he would adhere better to the wembley surface and is good at creating movement by running with the ball ... something we lacked at the SF! who he replaces is anyones guess!
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15/04/2008 13:14:00

If you could rely on Utaka on the right then the midfield equation changes. If you can't then Davis could play with Diarra. Dropping one of Diop or/and Muntari. We don't seem to get the best out of all of them at the same time. They drift in & out. This is where the remaining league games should be used to experiment a bit. Winning the final is all the matters, whoever plays!
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15/04/2008 14:08:00

Agreed with all of you, Davis is more consistent, due to his 100% effort and does run with the ball. Keeping in mind his early season efforts, none of us know why he has not featured on a regular basis since recovering from injury.
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15/04/2008 15:02:00

007 -- quite easy really. hr likes his men to be strong and black, preferably african. davis is neither... lol.
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15/04/2008 15:15:00

stop hating on muntari he has more class than the whole team
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15/04/2008 17:21:00

noone in that team can he a 50yard cross ball pass to a striker only for him to miss the sitter.. so reserve ur comments
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15/04/2008 17:23:00

i am pretty sure utaka will be fit for the cup final - as i reckon he could probably play now - but we dont want to risk agrivating his injury, which should have completly healed well before the cup final - same with diara. Of course, a lo will depend on our formation, although i also think our formation will depend on utaka. if he is fit, we will almost certainly go 4-5-1, if not, 4-4-2. i am pretty sure we will then play with "the usual" midfield (although not quite so usual anymore), although i would prefer to see mendes over diop, as i think he links up very nicely between diara, kranjcar, and muntari - better than davis anyway, who looked poor against newcastle. but i doubt very much we will go 4-4-2 AND play utaka, as although he is a lethal attacking force down the right (and centre), thats about it...
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15/04/2008 17:27:00

papa007, like i say mate the thing with muntari is he does the sublime - say a 50 yard pass, making it look easy - then 2 minutes later a simple 5 yard ball is given away... the fella is fantastic, but he just needs to be more consistent and cut out the simple mistakes - again as said i fully expect this to be done next season and we'll see the player we know he is week in week out. altho i must admit i do think that diarra, kranjcar, mendes even johnson would disagree that muntari is the only player who could spray a 5o yard ball - these do it regularly...
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15/04/2008 18:13:00

I cannot understand why Davis and/or Mendes is not ahead of Papa smurf is beyond me. And this from a man who was made up when we signed him...I just don't know whats happened to the man, And as I said the other day, I don't think Sully has put in one totally solid performance since the Villa game away.
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15/04/2008 19:13:00

carps, you are joking about Utaka being "a lethal attacking force down the right" arent you!! The only thing he's lethal for is falling over....when he can be bothered to move!
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15/04/2008 21:05:00

pompey newcastle at st james park... him topping the actim rtatings in october - no, im not joking. early in the season, when he wasnt so laid back, he was a fantastic player - when he ran at speed at (past) defenders and tore them apart. yes, i think he is very good!!!
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15/04/2008 21:25:00

hmmm, Manure Pompey Old trafford, absoloute waste of a place. Cant remember who else he's played at FP, but ever since the first game of the season, Bolton was it? he has not been fit to wear the shirt. Sorry carps, you'd never convince me here.
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15/04/2008 22:12:00

im with you p4me that game at old trafford made up my mind - actually being their, seeing the bigger picture was horrific... that said i still 'hope' he will come good next season, but am not entire convinced tbh...
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15/04/2008 22:57:00


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