Date:Monday April 6 2009
When the teams came out against Hull on Saturday the fact that Sean Davis was not in the side, let alone squad, came as even more of a surprise to me and many others as I am sure that my mate Richie got a text through just as we left for the ground - you know one of those where you pay for text updates of teams/goals and so on - with he line-up, and I thought it had him in it?
Various injury problems were then 'reported' over the weekend before Paul Hart confirmed that it was a knee injury, a cut across the knee that required stitches, that was picked up in training that kept him out - we certainly kept that quiet as this would have happened on Friday I would have thought and I did not hear anything...
As this gash is across the knee Davis is unable to bend it, as it will just bust open again, which leaves him a major doubt for the West Brom game at the weekend - and that is a major blow for us!
I love Richard Hughes, he gives his all and rarely lets us down but, and with all due respect to him, he is very limited as a footballer - to be fair though he knows this and does not try to outdo these limitations. Then again I am not being convinced by Hayden Mullins really, so it has to be one of these two dropping out - maybe the latter's greater ability to get around the pitch would see him get the nod and retained in the side?
However a midfield trio of Hughes, Mullins and Niko Kranjcar - even though the Croatian plays in advance of those behind Peter Crouch - against West Brom, as it was Hull, would not feel me with much optimism...
I thought that all 3 were pretty poor against Hull, granted the defenders aside - in particular Sol Campbell, who was top class, and Sylvain Distin - no one really stood out did they. There was no creation in the middle of the park, and for me we have to call upon Angelos Basinas, as unless we take a highly unlikely risk and throw in Pele - who I would at least put on the bench - we are not going to offer much more against the leagues basement boy are we, a side that we must beat and if we cannot beat them at home do we really deserve to stay up?
Basinas has looked ok so far, and had we maybe turned to him on Saturday, even if it was only to have brought him on, I think he could have done the job the others did but maybe unlocked the defence with a pass that he is more than capable of.
I could be totally wrong, and maybe, well hopefully, it was just tiredness with Kranjcar, but he did not seem that interested at Hull and it got me thinking that he 'might' be one of those that David James said was 'playing for a move, rather than playing to keep us up' - that is not to say that the Croatian would not be in the side, as he would, but he needs to start going in for those 50:50's to confirm that he is 'not frightened' of getting injured, which would ruin a possible summer move. That said I suspect we would be worried about this too, as he seems one of the most likely players to move on and I know I would rather have players that want to move on, move on than those that do not!
Well, with Davis looking a near cert to miss out at the weekend Hart has a big call to make, but I pray that this call sees him calling in the Greek captain Basinas, who for me has the ability to do what is asked of him defensively but will also offer us plenty more offensively than Hughes and Mullins - surely for a home game you have to be slightly more attack minded, which we could still do with a 4-5-1 even at home with the right people in...
PLAY UP POMPEY!
Date:Monday April 6 2009
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