Vital Football

Niko not prepared to rush/Christophe wants out

Niko not prepared to rush/Christophe wants out

Niko Kranjcar made a surprise return from injury last weekend and followed that up with a run out against Liverpool on Wednesday, but he has warned us in The News that he is still several weeks from full fitness, so we should not expect too much too soon: 'I'm nowhere near ready to start a game yet, but it was nice to get back out there again and get a feel for the pace of the game.

'In two or three weeks' time, I think I will be ready to push for the starting XI again, but I won't rush myself.

'I have to take it a step at a time, but I'm happy that I haven't had any problems with the ankle since the operation.

'That is great news for me. It has healed the way it is supposed to heal and now it is just a question of finding my match fitness again and getting back to the kind of form I was in before.

'Ideally, you want to step it up a little bit at a time. I played five or 10 minutes against Fulham, played for nearly 30 minutes against Liverpool, maybe do 45 minutes next time and so on, but it doesn't always work like that.'

For him to come back as soon as he has having been out injured like he was, and for the length that he was I do not think that too many will be expecting to much too soon will they... Once he is fully fit though it will be interesting to see where he will fit in to the side - will it be on the left, on the right or in the middle of a 5 man midfield?

Kranjcar also spoke of his delight as the reception that he has been given by the fans since his return: 'it meant a lot to me to get such a good reception from the Pompey fans when I came on against Fulham.

'It has been a pretty difficult time for me because I love playing football and I couldn't do something I love.

'Now I will work as hard as I can in every training session and do some extra running to get myself fitter again. But it's great to be back playing again.'

Will this reception be enough to convince him to stay with Pompey though - all we can do is keep backing the players as we do and hope that this is enough to convince them to stay, assuming finances also allow this... That said, as much as I do like the fella if Arsenal came in with a cash plus Armand Traore offer am I the only one who thinks that is a deal we should do?


One player that does seem to want to leave Pompey though is Jean-Francois Christophe.

The Frenchman is currently on loan with Southend, and as he is enjoying his time and enjoying regular 1st team football he is interested in signing for them on a permanent basis.

Since we signed him the summer before last most of us have thought that if he had any long term involvement with Pompey we would be surprised, so if he went it would not come as a shock would it...

Thoughts on the above please guys.


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Date:Friday October 31 2008
Time: 3:32PM


Rug, I agree with both thoughts too be honest. Whilst Niko is a talented player I do think that if Arsenal came in with an offer which included Traore we should take it. I've had worries about Niko's fitness levels since he signed for us. As for Christophe, why not let him go, can't believe his wages are that high but every saving I guess would be welcome at the moment!
31/10/2008 15:50:00
Niko has great skill and passing and when he is fully fit will be a key member of the squad. HR loved him but whether he is Tone's type of player remains to be seen.
31/10/2008 16:25:00
and thats the million dollar question dave, what will tones type of play or even his style be, guessing we'll only truly tell after next summer. but i agree rug if Arsenal came in with that offer you'd have to at least think about it and would porbably go for it.
31/10/2008 16:45:00
Kranjcar said regarding his fitness "I will not rush myself", and here lies the problem.
31/10/2008 17:17:00
It would be a great shame if Christophe went for good. I was fortunate enough to see him play twice for us the summer before last, and what a good prospect he looked. Still having said that there really is no substitute for regular first team footie.
31/10/2008 18:34:00
I thought Nico looked a tad chunky on Sunday (yes, pot calling kettle black but then I'm 43 and not a premiership footballer) so I expect he's got more to come when he's feeling fitter. Can't help thinking his main role for us now may be as income for attracting or retaining other players. It's amazing how fast things change in sport - was just reflecting on the Ashes 2005 team and how that line up never played together again and there are only 5 left in the current test squad - similarly when I look at how many players from the starting line-up from 17th May 2008 are still in the first team and there are only 5 - and Harry's gone and all - and it's only 5 months later. Funny old game - a metaphor for life - it all changes completely just as you think you have got it all sorted
31/10/2008 19:34:00
I had the same thought ust the other day HSB .. I wonder what the position will be one year on...? 007 just took the words right out off my mouth.. Niko will not rush... well why would he change the habit of a lifetime eh !
01/11/2008 08:12:00
No doubt Niko will be fit for the Januray sales. Take the money, never convinced he suits the English game. Very talented but drifts in & out too much. If we have to sell a 'big' name, Niko to go first.
01/11/2008 09:42:00
Chix this is response to your last post on draw against FULHAM OK Chix i respect your opinion on his performances but how can you say sooner he goes the better. You seem to forget that Kranjcar played last season on left side and not on his best position ACM. And how can you even think to compare Kranjcar with Gerrard, Fabregas they play in middlefield with Xabi Alonso, Hleb, Flamini... and Kranjcar played with Muntari and Diop two most selfish players the world has ever seen. I don't know if you knew Kranjcar had better stats then Hleb last season. Btw i think Kranjcar is better then Barry he totaly destroyed him when pompey played Villa and against England on Wembley Overrated ?? How many times i heard people say that Lampard, CR7, Quaresma is overrated and yet they are fantastic players even Modric was called overrated by the Spurs and look at him now he is in the Premier League - Team of the Week And also Chix how can you be grateful Pompey fan and say that pompeys OK not the best player but lets say even 4 best player (team is 11 players you know :D) to leave ?? btw Chix keep your dumb comments (well why would he change the habit of a lifetime eh !) for yourself.
01/11/2008 10:51:00
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