Portsmouth - Its 'bare bones' time...
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Its 'bare bones' time...

The problems are mounting, with a trio of midfielders set for spells on the sidelines - which means, although we have not yet heard it, we are down to 'the bare bones'...

Midfielders Niko Kranjcar and Jerome Thomas were already out but they have been joined by Sean Davis - groin and Papa Bouba Diop - hamstring, but most worryingly of all Lassana Diarra - who might have suffered a possible knee ligament problem!

Davis - who got injured on Sunday - and Diop - not sure how or when - are set to be out for a month, but it is not known how long Diarra could be out for - how this happened, again I do not know? All 3 are definitely out of the Chelski game tomorrow and the first 2, maybe all 3, most probably Spurs, Vitoria and Stoke in the week and a bit that follows...

Harry Redknapp, although not saying 'bare bone' just yet, did say: 'we've got a load of injuries. Diop has torn a hamstring, Davis has torn a groin muscle and they are out for a few weeks at least.

'Diarra has got a bad knock on his knee and it could be the ligament, so we are desperately short in midfield.

'We've got another game on Sunday, then the Uefa Cup return in Portugal on the Thursday. Then it's Sunday again.'

It will be all change for the Chelski game tomorrow, although that is not really a surprise: 'I've only got 17 players who are anywhere near fit. So I will bring a load of fringe players in. Those who haven't been playing will play.

'But I don't think there is any question about character. We were one of the best away teams in the country last season. We had won three fantastic games and these things happen in football.

'It will happen to most teams like that at some point this season and you just have to carry on and get through it.'

By my reckoning that leaves us with Richard Hughes - who was not fit enough to play at the weekend - and Arnold Mvuemba to select from in the middle of the park. Both will do a job, but if anything happened to these were up a certain creek! We know what Hughes can do and I think that Mvuemba is a fine talent so I have no problems with him coming in - maybe we need Jean Francois Christophe back from Southend and he might have a part to play this season after all!


With these injury problems in midfield one fella that would make an even better signing at this point in time than he would have anyway would have been Stephen Appiah, but Harry Redknapp has told The News his signing is highly unlikely: 'I doubt it very much whether he will be coming to us.

'He's going to be expensive. He's going to want big, big wages, so it will be difficult.

'We have already brought players in. I have got a squad and we've spent money to do that. The owner has been great.

'But we're not planning to do anything else now.'

His quality is not in doubt and we all know that signing him would be a fantastic move but if we do not have the money, even to pay wages, then there is not a lot we can do is there...

We have been ruing the fact that some fringe players did not go for a while, but must be ruing this even more now, although that said is there even any assurances that had we managed to offload some of these we would have been able to use this money anyway?

Either way we will muddle through, those that need to come in can and will do a job - I mentioned names above but have just remembered another. Marc Wilson, a fella that I had tipped to surprise a few this season as a youngster to watch, so maybe his chance will also come?


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The Journalist

Writer: pompeyrug Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Tuesday September 23 2008

Time: 6:49PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
has anyone else noticed that we always seem to play badly on sundays?
Report Abuse
23/09/2008 19:15:00

That's really bad news about Diarra - I hope its not all starting to go horribly wrong this early on in the season!
Report Abuse
23/09/2008 19:19:00

saving grace was it wasnt on the box - best (or worst!) of both worlds this weekend, spurs on a sunday or the box, d'oh...
as for the injuries hughesy and mvuemba will do a job, lets see if wilson has the quality we think, some youngsters could come in maybe matt ritche, altho he is a left sided midfielder isnt he? diarra is my biggest worry, lets just hope its not too serious...
Report Abuse
23/09/2008 19:22:00

in that case we might manage a decent team between us then!
Report Abuse
23/09/2008 19:27:00

and it's not bloody Chelski right :-0
Report Abuse
23/09/2008 19:27:00

what's not chelski? next you'll be telling us it's not Man Sheikie! anyway - that's potentially awful news about diara, davis and diop only compounds the problem, and having sold mendes and muntari over the summer, we are left very thin. I think Harry woul almost be justified in "bare bones" - we are really short of midfielders!
Report Abuse
23/09/2008 19:40:00

I don't want to hear one Harryism about games coming thick and fast and this is an excuse. This is what everyone has been going on about for years, well now it's here let's just get on with it. Im waiting for Harry to start his moaning about Lack of depth, Games coming thick and fast, We've loads of injuries, we're not equipped for this!...Well if thats the case lets step back and let someone else have ago next season. Otherwise, lets take Chelski head on, bring on the Spuds and lets go to Portugal and finish the job. Else what was the point?
Report Abuse
23/09/2008 19:48:00

Errrrrrr. Hold that bit on not panicing. Diarra, out for how long. How, when & where? He picked up a yellow in the 90th minute at citeh, then what? The rest we can arguably cover but you can't replace Diarra. As for the poxy game with chelski, field a fckin reserve team we need the 1st team players for the league europe. No point risking anymore on a pointless match!!!
Report Abuse
23/09/2008 19:49:00

I want to see mvuemba play, it would be good to get a chance to see Little play, although it's a shame that Ben sahar wont be able to make an apearance too.
Report Abuse
23/09/2008 21:15:00

If it is getting that bad then surely Linvoy and Crainie should be recalled along with the lad at Norwich and Christophe, but i bet they all stay out on loan, Duffy should come in and cover as well. If Diarra is a long term casualty then Appiah has to be looked at, we cant do without a creative midfield player can we?
Report Abuse
23/09/2008 21:44:00

Well I hope Harry sees the connection between having three new injuries and playing the same players over and over again. It's not hard to spot that playing too much makes players vulnerable to injuries, particularly groin and hamstring injuries. I said before the season began that I feared we were going to do what Bolton did last year, and we certainly have been so far, throwing ourselves straight into every competition with a squad which is neither big nor good enough to do that. It's well and good saying that there isn't money, we can't keep expecting Sacha to open his wallet, but you have to cut your coat according to your cloth. We know we don't have the squad to compete on all fronts, so we should have picked our priorities and fielded reserves for the rest. I only hope that this has happened early enough that we have a chance to recover. Bolton looked like they were going to get relegated at one time last year.
Report Abuse
23/09/2008 21:46:00

Well put, we all spoke about this when we got into Europe, but it could come back to bite us on the backside. Look what happened to Leeds, Ipswich, Forest, Leicester and Wimbledon to name a few
Report Abuse
23/09/2008 21:51:00

I'd like to see Nugent play. I feel sure that if he gets a few games, he will score. He does work hard on the pitch as well. I also thought that Hughes did well for us last year. I don't think we should sign Appiah up just cos we are short. Apparently he had a very nasty injury last year and his knee is not good.
Report Abuse
24/09/2008 00:03:00

My friend has seen Niko training in David Lloyds with a Physio. Apparently, his leg is out of the cast now and he is coming along nicely.
Report Abuse
24/09/2008 00:04:00

Another 6-0 drubbing from the richest clubs in the world beckons...
Report Abuse
24/09/2008 00:19:00

hate to say it, but the whole crouch - muntari trick hasnt paid off
Report Abuse
24/09/2008 01:56:00

U cant rush Niko, if we play him to early it will cost us big time Crouch isnt scoring yet, but im sure he will soon
Report Abuse
24/09/2008 02:00:00

i feel that crouchy has been playing ok in the last few games, the only thing that has been missing from him is goals but to be fair its not like he is missing chances as he isnt getting them - but is playing a part in others...
muntari wasnt 'being missed' in the 3 games prior to the citeh drubbing was he and as good a player as he is i say it again 'i would rather have seen him go than niko and without doubt diarra' - someone HAD to go, and i reckon this was the case with or without crouchy...
Report Abuse
24/09/2008 08:00:00

Half the problem with Crouch is that the Midfield haven't learnt to play with him yet. There's a tendency to hit high balls towards him and thats not suited to his game. Give him the ball to feet and he'll be a much more potent force. I'm with Rug Crouch is doing ok, as for Muntari there was no decision to make he wasn't worth the money we recieved for him, they had to take it he just hadn't doubled in value in the season he was with us.
Steve C
Report Abuse
24/09/2008 12:27:00

I certainly agree with Steve C about Crouch, Route one to him is not the way to go, They based the film 'White men can't jump' On him!!
Report Abuse
24/09/2008 14:42:00

Crouch does not need to be playing ok, we spent 13 million on him scoring goals, and he has been really poor in front of goal, and looks about as mobile as the QE2, WITH A BIGGER TURNING CIRCLE!! Whatever we say about Kanu he scores goals each season
Report Abuse
24/09/2008 15:59:00

Crouch will score goals too when he's provided with some decent service.
Steve C
Report Abuse
24/09/2008 16:46:00

Bare bones alright ... No guts either...
Report Abuse
25/09/2008 08:06:00

Crouch was marvellous last night!! Sorry i am joking, he owes us a few performances for the way he has started this year.
Report Abuse
25/09/2008 20:00:00


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