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What to do with Adams?

I had to miss my first game of the season today, and despite the fact that we got spanked 4-1 by West Ham am I 'glad' that I missed it? Nope, of course not, even though we once again capitulated...

I have not been 'switched off' to the problems that we have had, nor have I been 'ignoring them' in the hope they would go away, I have just had 'faith' these wrongs would be put right - but today finally pushed me to the point where I am 'genuinely worried' for our future as we are in freefall at the moment. Most seasons a team does this, they fall from grace to be embroiled in a relegation battle, if they do not get relegated in fact. I now genuinely fear that we 'might' be that side. I also fear that we do not actually have that many players that seem as though they would be 'up' for a relegation battle.

The thoughts that I had were, not that we were 'too good to go down', but we had too many good players who would 'get it right', but it does not look as though they will.

Calls for the head of Tony Adams have not gone 'unnoticed' by myself in recent weeks, but I have had complete backing of the fella - but the calls for his head were so loud and so frequent it was hard to ignore them today - just about every call or text that came into The Quay was calling for his head, although no doubt these were the same people calling for him to be given the job back along! We are fickle like that...

That said, maybe they do actually have a point, maybe we do need to get rid of him before it is too late?

I made no secret of my thoughts that he lacks experience, we all knew this, but have also made no secret of my support for him and how this would carry on. Maybe my support has, and will continue to be more so as I so desperately want it to be the case - but maybe this is misplaced, maybe it is time for me to concede that he cannot do the job that we want/need him to do?

Lets not put this all down to his doing though, as lets not let the FA cup win fool us too much - things were not completely 'rosy' under Harry Redknapp, but how can basically the same players that he had be so indifferent now? Can Adams not motivate the players? Yep they should not need that much motivating as they get paid enough and all that, but I guess they do need the guidance and motivation from someone.

But why can Adams not get them going? It is not like he does not know them - maybe it is because they know him too well! He has gone from being their 'mate', when he was the assistant to being their 'boss', now he is the manager. He might have been the one they went to, but cannot go to him as freely now due to his change of role, he is 'no longer' one of the boys... Maybe he is not commanding the respect enough because of this; maybe he does not know how to command it?

It is easy to point the finger at the manager, but as said plenty of times the players also need to look at themselves, but Adams has made some shockingly poor 'tactical changes' during his time as manager, and the changes that he again made today did little to help our course. Glen Little at least offered us the right level of balance, and looked our best chance of actually creating something. Whilst taking Jermain Defoe off was not a bad thing bringing on Kanu when you are chasing a game at 3-1 down surely cannot be the right thing to do - chasing does not come into the old mans train of thought... The players go out onto the pitch and 'should' put in the graft as they play for 'the club' as this is what pays their wages, but if they do not, or cannot, play for the manager they wont - right or wrong...

I hate this 'sack quickly' style in football, but we are slipping the wrong way, and with Arsenal coming up next and of course January and the transfer window do we stick with Adams, and back him with money, which could in itself be a dangerous thing, or replace him with someone more experienced - at least bring in someone with experience to work alongside him, or above him?

What has happened to our defence? Yep they are not getting the shielding from the midfield that they got last season but simple errors, and basic mistakes are costing us dearly. You win and lose as a team, and should defend as a team, but one fella that sticks out like a sore thumb is Sol Campbell. He has been a fantastic footballer but he is well past it, and the longer he stays in the side the worse we seem to get - even his 'organisational skills' have gone. His fundamental errors played into West Ham's hands today, and his constant berating of young Marc Wilson was easy for him to do, but he was the one leaving the kid with two on one so often...

It is a tough, tough call to make - but we really are approaching a 'make or break' phase of not only the season, but the longer-term future of the club as it stands. In the next few weeks our season could be in tatters, we 'might` be out of the FA cup and deep, deep in a relegation battle, if we lose this battle, troubled waters lay ahead.

I do not want this to be the case, but maybe removing Adams is something that we need to do?

I am not saying I want this, but I must admit that I would be lying if I did not admit that these thoughts have crept into my head for the first time - I worry that as much as I want him to be the man for us, chances are he is not, his lack of experience and his tactical unawareness, and quite possibly not having the command of the dressing room is leaving us in trouble?

I keep saying the players need to give more, and need to be held equally, well actually I have said more so, accountable for our current plight - but is it because Adams is the manager and is not up to this job that they look so poor? Either way, like him or not the players surely owe us and the club 100% commitment and effort - and they are not giving that. Surely it cannot be all down to him, but he is the one that 'will' cop the flack, as he now is! Should we stick by him, or would this be a mistake going into the transfer window. Still I want to say 'stick with him', but I am for the first time genuinely concerned and have reservations - but would anyone else coming in change the 'attitude' of the players?

So, what do you reckon, should he stay or should he go...


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The Journalist

Writer: pompeyrug Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday December 26 2008

Time: 6:13PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

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I've been one of those saying the guy has to be given time, and logic still says he does, but . . I'm beginning to say it through gritted teeth with my fingers crossed behind my back, and kind of hoping the decision will be taken anyway. It is a tough call, and we shouldn't panic, but you start to wonder where it will end if something isn't done. When players like Defoe can't hit a barn door with a banjo then something is wrong, and its easy to blame the players, but when its all the players, top quality players at that, then you have to wonder if its something else. Whats the easier fix, get rid of one man, or get rid of all our stars and start again? I don't like saying this, because I've been behind Tony from the start, and I still hope it will come right, but will it, really? Otherwise I may have to ask for our new half season tickets in the Fratton End to be swopped for those awful restricted view seats we had for the ManU home game !!!!
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26/12/2008 18:25:00

Sounds to me like a lot of players believe they won't be playing for Portsmouth much longer - Redknapp motivated them, Tony doesn't seem to. Tony only wants players who will play for him - does that mean he will sell 8 players in the window and then buy 8 replacements? I would be surprised if the 8 replacements would settle in, even if they were good players, in time for us to stay up? And buying players in the January sales is really tough so I think we may end up with Spurs rejects or something similar - yes I'm worried and have been looking at the gap between us and the relegation zone ever since Harry left.....
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26/12/2008 18:29:00

It's been documented on my doom mongering. TA ain't up to it. We need an experienced head. Not helped by Sasha's 'I want to sell'. It's a rudderless ship with a hole in it. The waters coming in & the big rats want to get off.
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26/12/2008 18:39:00

I don't really understand why people say we're falling or we've lost our way. Anyone who watched the second of half of last season saw us playing badly. Anyone who watched the games against Chelsea and Man City early this year saw us playing really badly. A good run and a bit of luck in the Cup, plus some good early season form flattered us last year. We aren't very good at the moment, it's true. We weren't very good for large chunks of last year either. Sack Tony if you must, but I don't believe it addresses the problem.
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26/12/2008 18:39:00

Sack him hes a great bloke and well respected throughout the game but the pompey job certainly dont suit him.Adams is best at championship level.I always reckon we need a movatator and an experienced guy for this club but with adams in charge we will be facing a relegation fight.I certainly dont want to go down to the championship and win that (6 points against scum) then come back up.we should be challenging the everton , villas for that uefa cup spot.Sasha has to get an experienced guy in as another coach or manager because adams is laking it and its starting to show.I WANT ADAMS OUT SAY I WANT ADAMS OUT !!!!!!!
stfc ballboy
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26/12/2008 18:52:00

I was never confident of his appointment but backed the club as it seemed wise to follow up Harry with his assistant. However Adams seems to be all over the show and he lacks the real character we need to kick-start our season. In Adams' favour the uncertain future of the club is playing against him and Harry's efforts in the transfer market this summer left the club with a patchwork quilt of a squad, never addressing the real issues like a right winger, another genuine striker and a replacement for Sol. Defoe has looked half the player he was under Harry, our central midfield is a depleted joke and Niko is not the kind of player we need when our backs are against the wall. It seems such a shame that after taking a couple of steps forward we seem to have jumped ten back. I have always worried this could happen, it's now up to Sacha + Peter Storrie to steady the ship and make the necessary changes to make the club a valuable prospect for a buyer.
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26/12/2008 19:43:00

Sack him now or don't bother!!
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26/12/2008 19:51:00

he'll come good.
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26/12/2008 20:35:00

Sack him? What utter *********! If the next guy doesn't win in six matches are you going to call for his head too! Jeeezus, we had a run of luck under Harry when playing especially badly and we got away with it. The world has gone mad.
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26/12/2008 20:57:00

The problem is, the transfer window is almost upon us, a decision has to be taken now or not at all. Yes we have been playing badly for a while, which is inexplicable given the quality of players we have now - but losing at home to teams at the wrong end of the table, and conceding so many goals? And the team don't look like they could win a raffle - or even bother to buy a ticket. We need someone the players will play for, and we need them while they still have time to make a difference. I have a lot of respect for Tony and want him to succeed, but Pompey FC has to come first.
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26/12/2008 21:21:00

Maybe I'm just foolishly loyal but I want Big Tony to stay. As I've said before - we're still in a transitionary period still reeling from the loss of Redknapp. After the January sales the club will have Tony's mark on it rather than being Redknapp's left over scraps. Once the big guy's stamp is on the team then I think (hope) we'll come good. It's ridiculous the rate that managers get the sack these days. Keep Tony on and let's see what happens. If we continue being cack then get someone new in the summer. Not before then.
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26/12/2008 22:22:00

Ok, some of the players are unsettled. They either want to leave, or think others will leave. After january, that will be the last thing on there minds, so no-one will be worrying about that. 2008 had two good results in it - knocking Man U out of the FA cup (although lets be honest, they hamered us!) and winning the FA cup (although lets be honest, it was only 1-0 against an average championship side). In the league, we were uterly useless. We also got a flukey win against Everton at the start of the year - but other than that, I can;t think of anything that has gone well for us. Tony or Harry, results have been uselss.
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26/12/2008 22:45:00

looking at players, I maintain Harry ripped the heart out of the team when he sold Benjani (no, I don't want him back though! the damage has already been done). Not only did that completly destroy the system that we played, it also cost us an absolute bomb. Buying crouch - ok, given he already had defoe - heaped further pressure on us, as we then had to sell muntari and mendes, so any heart that was left in the team evaperated completly. Thanks Harry.
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26/12/2008 22:48:00

Now, as far as Pompey are concerned, I don;t mind if we are involved in a relegation scrap... at least it'll be fun! (and will hopefully get the crowd going again). And if we get relegated, at least ticket prices should go down, so I may be able to afford to go to more than 5 games a season! sure, we won;t be watching premiership footballers, but atleast we wouldnt be watching over paid premadonas every week, but players who CARED, who FOUGHT, and above all, we would be in a league that actually anybody could win. forget this premiership nonsence, it's boring We all know who's going to be in the top 2, then 3rd, then 4th (actually, this is a "good" year, as there is a "chance" a diferent team may finish 4th!). We all know that the promoted teams will struggle (ok, Hull started well, but quite frankly, they arn't competing for the title like MK DONS and Peterbrough are... so they arn't doing THAT well), And even if we are in the championship, we would probably have about the same media coverage too... almost none...
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26/12/2008 22:54:00

But for the moment, let's just stick with what we've got. I had a great time at the FA cup final (thankyou gandor!!!), I have enjoyed watching pompey on MOTD (sort of... in a not really sort of way), And I have enjoyed the ocasional game I have been able to afford to see. I'm looking forward to Sunday, and am hoping no-one will want to ruin my time supporting my local team by screaming for our young english manager with AMAZING footballing pedigree to be sacked. What Tony did as an assitant manager for the club was fairly amazing - Please could people stop being so bl***** impatient, and just accept the fact we are a small club, punching well above our weight, so when things don't go too well, when the owner - who isn't that rich, and has poured lot's of his own cash into the club - says he doesn't have the time for it, and when we loose at home 4-1... can we not just reflect on the fact that we are priviliged to be in the position we are in, and take highlights from the game... like marc wilso staring in the league for the first time (insidentaly, how was he?)
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26/12/2008 23:00:00

sorry for all the supridly long posts... but I'm fed up with everybody suggesting we sack adams. GIVE HIM TIME!!!
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26/12/2008 23:01:00

oh, and sorry about the awful spelling!
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27/12/2008 00:15:00

i ignored all of the sack adams comments and was 100% behind tony, until today. yes we were the better team until their 3rd goal, yes he brought on traore, good move. but bringing off little, who was our best performer on the day (despite losing the ball after a mazy run) was silly. more importantly, when a team goes a few goals down, any decent manager would stand up and get behind ttheir players, instruct them. i watched tony, and after putting traore on, he didnt get up ONCE. thats half an hour, when you are chasing a team, at home. you have a fairly pacey striker on the bench, warming up, and you don't put him on. then you go 4-1 down. still doesnt bring him on. still doesnt get up and encourage the players. at the end of the day, i dont want our team to be managed by someone who seemed to have given up. i want someone who will throw caution to the wind when 4-1 down, chuck on the striker, and tell his players what to do, not just sit there not using the last sub. thats what its there for! then i think, if he's not even going to try and make a difference when we are losing, what is he going to do with 20m? also, niko and campbell havent put in a good performance between them since they have come back from injury, but yet they seem to have a guaranteed first team place. we are putting on pressure at 2-1 down, wlson hits the post and niko just loses the ball pointlessly from a great position and 10 seconds later we are 3-1 down. shocking.
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27/12/2008 02:51:00

He needs an experienced assistant manager ASAP
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27/12/2008 06:17:00

well i aint had time to read all the comments but i think we should sell all the top players and let Tony buy his own players if we go down we go down but we need to be real about this. Last season after the reading 7-4 we could'nt score a goal at home, then after we got to Wembley we could'nt win a game, then after we won the cup we have been garbage. Redknobb has forced the frigid Gaydamak into a spending spree we could'nt afford built on empty promises of a club on the up-new ground etc and it has all been found out. a team resembles its manager with Harry it was all bravado a bulls88t, Tony is a honest man who has seen the error of his formed life. I predict now.. 1. we will not go down. 2. Adams will build a honest and exciting team of young hungry players and we will survive by feeding these on to the Utd's and Liverpool's and spuds etc for a profit.
plymouth graham
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27/12/2008 10:22:00

Harry destroyed our team and saw this all coming, that's why he jumped ship. The Man City game was a warning.
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27/12/2008 10:23:00

GIVE TONY TIME! Nodster, he has that in Johnny Metgod!
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27/12/2008 10:26:00

Can Portsmouth FC afford to be the training vehicle for an inexperienced manager ? Do the players really want to play for Pompey now Harry has gone ? Are we in deeep do-do ? I just don't know what I think anymore .....
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27/12/2008 11:30:00

Me neither. just four weeks ago an Adams inspired Pompey side almost beat the mighty AC Milan and now all are turning against him. Heads dropped after the third goal but as Zola said we were unlucky. I agree that the tactics were strange. Wilson against Bellamy. Not using Nugent after Defoe's inept first half. Give him and chance and some committed players and we will be OK!
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27/12/2008 12:45:00

Agreed Dave. Chix, there's many a case of an untried manager going on to make a sucess of it - HOWEVER, much depends on the infrastructure behind the manager and the commitment of the players; both questionable factors in the current situation at Pompey. Tony Adams and Johnny Metgod should be able to turn it around and get us playing attractive and WINNING football. Like, maybe 12 to 14 clubs in the Premier League, we will have a fight on our hands - it's so close this season that a side good enough to finish 8th could also go down. Hold tight and try and enjoy the ride! PLAY UP POMPEY!
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27/12/2008 17:40:00

What worries me is alla this tak of we should sell some of our players. Who wants them?
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27/12/2008 18:29:00

Get rid of Distin, he's *****ing me off with his media chit chat. We don't need players like him stirring the camp up.
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27/12/2008 20:24:00

after some more time to reflect - i still think we should stick by adams, he is genuine, honest and wants to be our manager, unfortunately he has not taken on a side (not a team as most do not play 'as a team') that can say the same... lets give him the chance to wed out those that 'do not want to play for portsmouth football club' - forget not wanting to play for him and bring in those that do, for me that would be more than enough to keep us up, and i do not think we will go down, there are worse clubs than us without a doubt and over 38 games this will show!
adams needs to start making the right tactical changes tho...
lets not forget the likes of sir alex and so on that were days from being sacked - we all know how things worked out for them given time.
crazy i know, but i just have this feeling about going to arsenal tomorrow - i feel adams can inspire us, arsenal are there for the taking if we want to take them!
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27/12/2008 23:32:00

Tell me i'm stupid, but this is how i see it. I try not to be Anti Players or team, and am so Pompey i bleed blue, and never thought we would go down the year Harry played Hoodeeny, . . . No i honestly i always felt we would get out of it, hence me saying, call me stupid lol.... Anyway, i feel Defoe was an absolute disgrace on Sunday, he ran for nothing, he battled for nothing, he took a penalty so poorly, and then shrugged his shoulders as if didnt matter.... We pay good money to watch players play, not shrug their shoulders, aso sell him on for 20m to City, and lets get out of financial crap. (He has only performed this season, when the England coach has been in town? ) Crouch played out of his skin, but had no Support at all from Defoe, so dont blame crouch, he is one staying put and fighting the fight. Distin??? Makes so much noise, its obvious he wants more cover to cover his frailties. He is getting too old, needs to be helped out, and as Campbell is also too old, he is also in need of cover. Neither are fast enough anymore, and neither can look to the other for support. They only look good now, when Kaboul and/or Johnson play, and thats not fair to Kaboul or Johnson, so get rid of Campbell, and Distin, and use Kaboul, Johnson, Wilson and get in a left back. Davis, Wilson and Hughes are all up for the fight, and i believe Niko is too, i know people feel he pulls out of challenges, but i dont think this is because he has lost interst, i think he is protecting the ankle still, just a little. And as for Little, he showed his worth on Friday with a 100% performance, well done that man. As for James, yes he makes hoolies, he always has, but at the moment he is making more than ever. i think thats because he also, feels he cant trust Distin or Campbell anymore. So i am left with my feelings on Adams. Well they are mixed, i really would love to give him the chance to unload the rubbish, balance the books, and bring in some new blood, then see what happens... but at the same time, i cant see any premiership club giving any manager time to do that, with the league being so tight this year. Look at Ramos and not good enough for Spurs? but good enough for real? its not the stature of the 2 clubs, real are much bigger, its the tight league causing the pressure this year.
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28/12/2008 00:57:00

Sorry i made a mistake in my previous post, Sunday should have read Friday, but as it was Christmas (Boxing Day) every day is Sunday at the moment lol
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28/12/2008 01:01:00


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