Vital Football

Shut that door... err, window!

Shut that door... err, window!

Finally the transfer window has shut, we can now get on with the important issue of playing football matches without fear of players leaving - focus on the job in hand must now be the main thing.

In all fairness we were promised 5 players at the start of the transfer window - we got these 5, plus we turned a deal into a permanent one, and there was not the 'mass exodus' that was feared, and in fact forecast by many media outlets so was it really that disappointing a window?

Lassana Diarra and Jermain Defoe both went, Diarra was always likely to go and when Madrid come calling you do not say no - and how could we say no to £20m! Defoe made it clear he wanted out, so he got out, and again at £15m we have not done bad on the deal - we are better off without the likes of him anyway, and 'unfortunately' the fella has now busted his foot, it could not have happened to a nicer guy!

By selling these two we have cut a massive chunk, I would imagine approaching £400,000-£500,000 per month off the wage bill, and have also helped recoup some, if not all of the debt we were in. The summer might, and probably will see more departures, but we will also see arrivals - we must be realistic in our thoughts on who these arrivals will be though, but that is for another day...

We signed Nadir Belhadj on a permanent basis and also bought in Jermain Pennant on loan along with Hayden Mullins and Pele last week, add the captures of Theo Gekas and Angelos Basinas - who although fairly defensive has an eye for a pass if I recall - in the last 24-hours, although not 'star names' still bodies, and bodies are what we needed. Remember star names are not always the answer though.

Had we been able to bring that creative element in as far as an attacking option went, midfield/attack linkup we would have been laughing - so to see the Giovani dos Santos deal fall through was a blow, but to pay £5m for a player that was some 4-6 weeks off full fitness, and risking a longer term injury had we tried to rush him back, was the right thing to do when all is said and done.

His arrival would have been a major boost, but we are not in a position that enables us to take any kind of risk - same goes for Javier Saviola and why his deal did not go through.

Imagine how Tony Adams and for that matter Peter Storrie would have been slated had either the Mexican or the Argentinean been signed and broke down due to a lack of fitness and the need to rush them back? Permanently in dos Santos' case for £5m or on loan on big wages as far as Saviola was concerned, the grief would have been unbearable!


In our position we cannot afford these, being stuck with a £5m player on decent wages who might never pull on a Pompey shirt should he break down then the unthinkable happen at the end of the season, it does not bare thinking about does it!

Not getting one, or both, was disappointing but after much soul searching, looking into facts put to us and weighing up the pros and cons I think we must understand and accept the right call was made with both of these players...

We now know what we have and must now make the most of it, everyone needs to pull together and we need to hope that these latest arrivals can hit the ground running, and the sooner Pele is up and running the better - an attacking midfielder is what we need and that is what he is so we must utilise him to the fullest. He must be in the plans of Adams despite his thoughts to the contrary, it goes against the grain of our transfer policy for this window if he has been signed without the intention of being used!

Had we gone through yesterday and today without signing anyone we would have been totally deflated - the names might not be what people wanted or expected, but we must start to reassess the types of players we will sign, and to be fair in this window the names were always likely to be different.

At the end of the day we have some names and have kept the majority of others, others that must now really knuckle down and prove they want to be here and play for the shirt, the club, the fans and the money they earn to keep us up. They can swan off in the summer, but lets hope they swan off - if they do - having left us, the fans who will be left behind regardless as we do love the club, in the premier league!

Lets get it on...


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Date:Monday February 2 2009
Time: 6:38PM


we did make 'some' good signings, would have been nice if the ones like saviola went through, they would have been very, very usefull for us this season. I think that refusing brilliant players on fitness reasons, if that was the real reason, is stupid, they may not be fit now, but they will be by the end of the season, when we will proably need them most. but thats probably not the real reason so...
02/02/2009 18:47:00
Well said Ruggers and well played Peter and Tony .. You said no more big names would go and they didn't (bids for Davis, Crouch and Johnson were rebuffed). You said five would come in including a central midfielder and a striker (that happened) You addressed every position we claimed we were weak in before the window opened (RW/Mid, Def Mid & Striker) .. You worked within your budget (or so it appears) .. You tried to get some bif names Saviola, Emerson, Edmilson (but decided against it) You tried to reclaom a fans favourite in GON, but despite your best efforts could not get him.. and you didn't take the risks (as Rug pointed out) with Dos Santos, Saviola and Sunny !... It remains to be seen wheter these players can play the part and get us away from the relegation zone .. but as I see it you have acted wisely with the (long term) future of PFC at the forefront of any deals.. Well Done fellas..
02/02/2009 18:50:00
I can see why the "must be fit now" sounds annoying but put it into context: if someone is six weeks off fitness, they miss about 40% of the rest of the season so if they are hoovering up big wages then this doesn't seem a good idea. Get a settled team playing well is presumably the idea...Can't help feeling that anyone REALLY worth having wouldn't commit to more than staying here till May so if they miss 40% of their entire PFC playing career, a bit ropey.
02/02/2009 18:53:00
Just also want to add that I think Rug needs a round of applause for keeping us up to date with what was going on today and providing us with an ever changing forum for comment and debate.. Well done the Landlord Fantastic effort.. Sit back and pour yourself a large one..
02/02/2009 18:53:00
Agree HSB.. And it's interesting also that nobody else snapped up Dos Santos, Sunny or Saviola... it seems the right decisions were indeed made .. also if Pompey do have a stringent fitness policy .. I think that is a good thing .. not something to be frown upon because us fans know best.. nah on this occassion hats off the Peter and Tone..
02/02/2009 18:56:00
Well said Chix, I agree with that. Of course many will be disappointed with the lack of star names, but that's the reality of the situation we're in. I'm happy with that, and especially that the window is now shut for a while, and for a short while we can forget talk of anyone leaving. I wonder how many of the new faces we'll see on Saturday.
02/02/2009 18:56:00
By the way I was responding to Chix's first post - blimey you guys are quick!
02/02/2009 18:57:00
the greek striker we DID sign was top scorer in the bundesliga - for a club threatened by relegation last season. I reckon he could be our "star signing"...
02/02/2009 18:58:00
I think we have done OK bringing in players within our budget. I am quite excited about seeing some of these new players playing and will get behind them all 100%. A new striker in Theo might give us a different edge? Who knows.
02/02/2009 18:58:00
Well done Rug, as ever the voice of reason. With the closing of the dreaded Transfer Window, 50% of our worries are now gone, and we must set to and get on with what it leaves us with. Its OK moaning about not having big names come in, but there are plenty of teams above and around us in the league with only half the big names we have. So come on everyone, lets stop acting like spoilt kids and start supporting our team, whoever they are, and thank the lord that we have a team worth moaning about. If the Press had been right, we would be having a very different posting today. PUP!
02/02/2009 18:59:00
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