Vital Football

Am I foolish to fall for the right attitude?

Am I foolish to fall for the right attitude?

'I am enjoying my football at Portsmouth', 'I want to prove what I can do' blah, blah, blah - we have heard it time and time again from John Utaka...

Yep, people will say 'the guy is a striker but we have rarely used him as a striker.'

That may well be the case, but no matter what position you are 'natural in' the basics of actually 'putting in a shift', or at least 'some effort' and 'looking interested' should be retained wherever you are played, right?

Lets be honest playing as a right winger is not something that the Nigeria is totally unfamiliar to playing as, this was done on many occasions in France and at international level.

To be honest I would not have been overly bothered if he left, but, and maybe foolishly so, I think I have been won over by some things that he told The News this weekend - that, and maybe the fact we seriously might need to keep as many as possible with numbers low...

Commitment, dedication, desire and effort for the shirt are qualities that I, well we, always want from Pompey players - a lack of quality is usually overlooked somewhat if you have those attributes...clearly Utaka has the talent is it just those other qualities mentioned have quite clearly been lacking!

Players that 'want to play for the club' are something that you clearly need and want, hearing him say 'I still have two years on my contract, so I still hope to be around' and 'I don't know (whether I'll be sold). I'll see how it goes. But I hope to be at Portsmouth next season' are plus points.

Maybe we cannot sell him if truth were known? But hearing him say he wants to stay, joining others in saying this, is a positive thing and the more players we have playing for us that actually do want to play for us the better!

Maybe we will always be left frustrated by the enigma that is John Utaka, put in a proper shift mate and you will win more and more over, if he can finally back up his words, which are always those of a 'world-beater', he might still be just that for us...then again, maybe not?

PLAY UP POMPEY!

Join the Vital Pompey Debate

Boot the Sun out of Pompey!

Win FREE pizza with Vital Football!
Select your team and get 50% off if they score twice.
www.papajohns.co.uk/football



For the very latest Premier League odds

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

Writer:pompeyrug
Date:Sunday June 28 2009
Time: 9:12AM

Comments

0
Actions speak louder than words... Have seen too many 'I'll get better' & 'I owe the fans a performance' comments from him. Also he may be being played out of position but he's played on the right for us so often now he surely should have mastered that position by now.. A nice bloke and does a lot of community stuff for the club.. but as a player, he's had a fair crack of the whip with over 50 games played I'd say get shot
Chix
28/06/2009 10:03:00
0
The very reason Utaka is so frustrating is because we do know he has the ability, we've seen occasional flashes of it. But its so annoying when we see him not really try. Although it has to be said that it was only a couple of matches last season when he was played in his proper position of striker, and he did well. Whilst I would like to see all Pompey players have Nugent's attitude and it shouldn't be up to a manager to motivate and get the best out of any player, sometimes at the top level the talented players are spoilt prima-donnas who need that. And I do wonder if with the right manager, who could motivate Utaka and would play him as a striker, he might turn into our secret weapon, into the top striker that we need to play alongside two-meter Peter. And it would be a shame to let him go without getting that from him if we can. Of course we don't know who the new manager is going to be, so there's no way to tell how he and Utaka will link up, but as we probably won't get much for Utaka anyway, I'd like to wait and see, at least till January.
tracyc
28/06/2009 10:04:00
0
Utaka, undoubtedly has talent. The trouble is it seems to be stuck in "Latent" mode. I've no doubt that if it all came to the fore he really would be a force to be reckoned with. There could be a lot of reasons Utaka hasn't delivered as yet. Maybe he's just like a boxer who has all the technical ability but lacks the killer instinct. If it's that, then he'll never deliver. Sport psychology is something I know nothing about, but what I do know is mind training can have incredible results. As tracyc mentioned. the right kind of manager could well be the answer. When I've seen Utaka interviewed he does come across as a very genuine and gentle man, an overall good human being. Maybe that's his Achilles Heel. As with the boxer...he lacks the killer instinct to bring out his latent talent. And that's why we all find him so frustrating. Give him until January.
cornypomp
28/06/2009 11:08:00
0
He can change a game. we need players that can do that. And if he's saying he wants to stay, and play for pompey, all the better - however for the simple reason that - right now - he is practicly the only player that can open up a defence (even if it is three times in a season) in our team - he is worth keeping.
pompeycarpet
28/06/2009 15:38:00
0
In all fairness Nugent is a striker who adapted to both right AND left wings pretty well. I'm not Nugent's biggest fan, and he's really surprised me tbh. Wilst Utaka's attitude is 100% spot on (and perhaps this is reason for him to stay?) his performances on the pitch haven't reflected this. I can turn around and say that "I want to prove myself to the Portsmouth fans" but it doesn't make me any better a player - when I get on that pitch I'd probably be laughed off!!
PFCGino
29/06/2009 08:58:00
0
As Carpet mentions, he is the only player at the moment who looks like they could open up a defence and pull away from the defenders. A new manager could be just what was ordered. I have a feeling that next season will be his time, and then we will end up selling him to a bigger club.
sneakay
29/06/2009 12:03:00
0
Having seen what Utaka could do when he first came here i'm inclined to keep hold of him all the time he wants to be here unless a sensible offer comes in. My view is that as often happens with foreign players he hit the ground running then Defenders started to catch on and this made things more difficult, add to that being in a different country and his form suffered. He should be well adjusted to Britain now and i think he's worth another chance, at the figures that are being touted about as offers we haven't a lot to lose and plenty to gain if he comes good. He's not the first player to start well and then go of the boil you could name loads from around the premier league. Deco for one, who arrived with much bigger expectation than Utaka. Many talented players seem to go through a mixture of good and bad spells, when they're good they're untouchable when they're bad they're awful. Utaka strikes me as a confidence player and showing he's still wanted should boost his confidence and get the best out of him again. When Fans get on a confidence players back all they will do is make things worse.
Steve C
29/06/2009 16:41:00
0
Utaka is ***** let him go he's had enough cjances.
GreenGiant13
01/07/2009 00:42:00
Page 1/1
  1. 1

Login to post a comment

Recent Portsmouth Articles

On this day in history...26th May

A look back at this day in history, and what was happening with Pompey courtesy of our sister site PompeyRama, 26th May.

Please be Real Madrid...please be Real Madrid!

Ok, despite the fact Real Madrid must 'owe us one' for Diarra, I'm a realist with who Pompey will face...I'll settle for a pre-season friendly at Fratton being against Barcelona!

On this day in history...25th May

A look back at this day in history, and what was happening with Pompey courtesy of our sister site PompeyRama, 25th May.

We know Danny you want to stay!

In case we had forgot Hollands has reminded us of his desire to stay with Pompey! I'm not 'desperate' either way in many ways but sorting this quickly would be best for all concerned.

Archived Vital Pompey Articles

Vital Pompey articles from

Site Journalists

pompeyrug
Editor email
Profile
eastneydave
Editor email
Profile
paultsmouth
no email
Profile
Chix
no email
Profile

Current Poll (see more polls)

PO - Plymouth MotM
Suggested By: Site Staff
Allsop5%
Davies4%
Burgess20%
Barton53%
Stevens0%
Evans0%
Hollands2%
Doyle8%
Bennett0%
McNulty4%
Roberts0%
Sub - McGurk2%
Sub - Close0%
Sub - Chaplin2%
ScoopDragon Publishing Entire League Network of Sites

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
C Northampton 46 29 12 5 99 36
P Oxford 46 24 14 8 86 43
P Bristol Rovers 46 26 7 13 85 31
4 Accrington 46 24 13 9 85 26
5 Plymouth 46 24 9 13 81 26
6 Portsmouth 46 21 15 10 78 31
7 Wimbledon 46 21 12 13 75 14
8 Leyton Orient 46 19 12 15 69 -1
9 Cambridge 46 18 14 14 68 11
10 Carlisle 46 17 16 13 67 5
11 Luton 46 19 9 18 66 2
12 Mansfield 46 17 13 16 64 8
13 Wycombe 46 17 13 16 64 1
14 Exeter 46 17 13 16 64 -2
15 Barnet 46 17 11 18 62 -1
16 Hartlepool 46 15 6 25 51 -23
17 Notts County 46 14 9 23 51 -29
18 Stevenage 46 11 15 20 48 -15
19 Yeovil 46 11 15 20 48 -16
20 Crawley 46 13 8 25 47 -33
21 Morecambe 46 12 10 24 46 -22
22 Newport 46 10 13 23 43 -21
R Dag & Red 46 8 10 28 34 -35
R York 46 7 13 26 34 -36
Latest F1 News
Latest Vital Boxing News

Recent Portsmouth Results (view all)

Portsmouth Fixtures (view all)

Vital Members League Table

RankNamePoints
1.pompeyrug67
2.storagematt30
3.FrattonBlue24
4.Copnor4322
5.mslorna4820
6.Emsworthianblue11
7.eastneydave10
8.Ronald Wilson7
9.Jimsmithswig7
10.PompeyFromtheUSA4