Date:Thursday May 22 2008
Harry Redknapp has told The News that he is keen to build on the squad that he has in place, not rebuild it - which is most certainly the right way to go!
In order for us to carry on the strides forward we have made over the past couple of years, and lets not forget we have gone from near relegation certainties to a top 10 regular and of course FA cup winners in just 2 years! Yep, as I say these strides have been giant sized but if we are to carry on this movement we must retain as many of the current squad as possible - and I hope and feel we will...
In typical Redknapp fashion he has played down just how far we might be able to go but has said enough for me to suggest that he does have big plans and these plans involve keeping as many players as we can, and then adding to them: 'I don't know where we can go. It depends.
'It's like everything, it depends on who you can bring in during the summer.
'A manager a few years ago went into a dressing room and said "Come on lads, let's go and win the Cup so we can get some money to buy some good players next year".
'That's not the case here. I've got some good players. I do want to strengthen the team if I can.
'The owner has been fantastic in backing me, so if we can get the two or three targets I am after I think we will be a strong team next year again - certainly a team who can establish itself in the top half of the table.
'It's not easy, though.
'I keep saying the top four are up and away at the moment. Tottenham shouldn't be far away next year with the type of players they are going to bring in. So a top-half finish again and another trip to Wembley would be great.'
Another Wembley visit would be fantastic next season... hang on, we will be getting that with the community shield, hopefully he means another on top of that!
Ok, Spurs will spend big - they have already started this - but why should they be that far in front of us? There is no reason why we cannot at least match them, why not better them next season? They have been spending big for years but are they any further forward than we are? Nope! We have the talent and ability at this club to go places - providing we keep this talent in place as much as possible the world could well be 'our lobster' next season, and the seasons that follow...
The futures of the likes of Pedro Mendes, Sean Davis, Richard Hughes, Dave Nugent and so on might be unclear, but providing they all want to stay as much as possible why not keep the lot? The prospect of uefa cup football seems to appeal to them.
We will need a bigger squad next season, so with Redknapp hopefully utilising this to the fullest we will need a lot of players as we will be chasing 3 very winnable trophies, and targeting a top 4 place is not as unrealistic as it might sound.
We might have numbers in midfield but in my honest opinion we do not quite have the quality that some might feel to be able to dispense with the likes of Mendes, Davis and Hughes, so as I say as long as they want to stay I hope that they do, as they will be needed next season and hopefully would be used more than they were for large periods of this season.
Lassana Diarra and Niko Kranjcar are said to be targets of the 'big boys' - top class showings at Euro 2008 could make them even more sought after but unless it is in our best interests to let them go we should do all we can to keep them and indeed add to them.
The future looks extremely bright for Pompey, we have a wealth of young talent also coming through so lets just hope we can add a few more quality international players to the squad over the coming months, and I have little doubt that we will and we will spent big again this summer - the difference for us as opposed to some others will hopefully be we will not be rebuilding, simply building on what we have...
PLAY UP POMPEY!
Date:Thursday May 22 2008
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