Hart on the job in hand...
You do not need me to say what I think of the appointment of Paul Hart, nor do I need to ask your opinions on this - I think most have made this clear already, but simple fact is he is the manager now so we have to know what he is thinking.
He spoke to pfcTV shortly after his appointment was confirmed and has plenty to say, this is a summarisation of what he did say...
He said he was 'looking forward to challenge' but did not see the appointment as 'reward' for keeping us in the premier league last season - as far as he was concerned he was 'contracted to do a job', which he did. He is 'looking forward to the season' but knows that 'it will be a tough one' but we will be 'competitive and a difficult proposition'.
Hart says after talking to Dr SAF he himself is also 'looking forward to his challenge, and this allows us to look forward' after this being done, with this deal needing to be something that had to be done 'sooner rather than later - but not necessarily needed before Havant game', as it proved...
He also said 'pre-season was going well, the players were in 'good condition, working hard and showing a good attitude'.
Portugal will be a 'good indicator' but by the time we play Rangers he will expect the team to be 'nearer to what he will want to have to be in place' when the season kicks off but 'nerves will be growing' however he has 'fire is in the belly.'
A 'few' trialist's 'will be looked at', as 4 were against Havant, with him 'happy to be playing local clubs as it is good for them and us'.
Apparently, as had been reported, a 'list of players' that were 'conjured up' before the end of last season are being looked at. Some have 'committed', although I am not sure if he meant that are here already or those that might come in?
What was he aiming for? He said it was 'important to stay in the premier league, anything else a bonus.'
Something that I noticed even more than I had before, he says 'err' hell of a lot!
In a separate interview with sky sports news he confirmed that Peter Crouch, whilst no other bids have been acceptable a yet, is still likely to go: 'I think not. I think Peter will leave.
'Peter was fantastic during the three months that I was caretaker manager last season and we will be sorry to lose him.
'Everybody wants to keep their best players but we have to be realistic.'
I am now really confused on this, if you want to keep your best players you keep them, right? That said if players want to leave you let them leave so, despite going back and forth on this issue it 'seems' as though Crouch does actually want to leave?
If so, so be it - I am bitterely disappointed by this if this is the case as we gave him, as we had so many others, a platform to build on and look how we are repaid... That said from a financial point of view maybe needs must, and if this means we are able to stand on a sustainable footing, again I guess so be it!
Whatever though, the sooner we draw a line under this issue the better - where he goes I do not really care now, lets just get this done so we can move on.
For what it is worth, here are some of my own thoughts to sum up...
Yep, it is going to be a tough, tough season - I think we need to prepare for this. At least up until January things will be very tight.
We are not going to spend much money, so anyone expecting this will be surprised, for me how we do spend this will be crucial.
What we do need, without a doubt, is players that will give nothing less than 100% every time they play, but they need to also have enough quality about them - getting this blend right is going to be the massive challenge, but we cannot underestimate the part that we, the fans, will have to play this season...
PLAY UP POMPEY!