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Niemi signs

As had been expected Pompey have completed the signing of Antti Niemi, with the 37-year-old signing a 1-year contract.

Niemi, as we all know, retired a year ago due to a wrist injury but the keeper was recommended to Paul Hart by Pompey keeping coach David Coles so we have signed him to add competition for David James - not to replace him!

His arrival is also expected to allow us to loan out Asmir Begovic so he can play regularly this season to help his development. Although it seems like Jamie Ashdown's future 'might' lay away from Fratton in a permanent manor...

Hart, talking to The Pompey Site, is happy with his arrival: 'Antti has got vast experience and will be a welcome addition to the squad.

'Our goalkeeping coach David Coles worked with him in the past and told me all about his character and his quality.

'He has a massive appetite to succeed and he relishes a challenge.

'It provides David James with some good competition and also allows Asmir Begovic to go out on loan, while Jamie Ashdown needs first-team football as well.'

The former Rangers keeper could actually make his Pompey debut against them tomorrow afternoon at Fratton?


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The Journalist

Writer: pompeyrug Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday August 7 2009

Time: 3:16PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
Not overly convinced by this signing, but I suppose it is better to have some experience ready to step in then Begovic, who is relatively unknown, still think he's a good shout for the future though.
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 15:22:00

Bergovic did pretty well last season when he came in for the injured James. Had a pretty impressive debut. But he will never dislodge James and i think the club are right to get him out on loan to get first team experience. I think he will be ready for first team action when James retires. I rate him higher than poor Ashdown, which is why maybe we're going to offload him. He has a career and won't play second fiddle and its unfair on him. Niemi is a good signing for all concerned really.
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 15:29:00

Scummer Scummer Scummer Scummer..
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 15:32:00

Finnan needs a treatment room buddy
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 15:34:00

surely he has some already :-)
he may be a former scummer, but he is now a blue so long as he gives it everything 'if' called upon - hopefully not much as it means jamo is out - that will do me...
i wonder if we will give him the 'scummer' treatment tomorrow lol!
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 15:37:00

If Bergovic now goes on loan to a league One or Two side I am gonna be livid .. He went on loan last season with a view to gaining experience ... If he does go on loan it needs to be to a Campionship club at least.. Chelsea were after him FFS . and rather than use own own we get a crock of a keeper .... Oh but.. "Paul Hart knows the club inside out" ... Shows how much you know about the passion of Pompey fans Dr SAF .... Nothing! Who is next Matt Le Toss advising on youth development .. Oh silly me he's doing that already !...
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 15:37:00

Sorry me again .. I've just re-read what Hart said ....'It provides David James with some good competition".... Is he having a laugh ... Is Paul Hart REALLY suggesting that a bloke who has come out of retirement (scummer or not) will challenge DAVID JAMES for the keepers jersey... What Planet is he on..
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 15:41:00

Yh he is now a Blue and a alright keepers. Its like Martin Cranie, remember where we bought him from and hes no Scummer. Hope we dont give him the scummer treatment lol
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 15:43:00

I always thought he was a great keeper despite his red stripe days-(4-1. 4-1..he he he haheh) always makes me chuckle thinking about him that day...any way he is a good keeper but i worry what it TRUTHFULLY means about the England No1
plymouth graham
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 15:47:00

(Cranie) Yes he was Mad but he is not considered a Southampton Legend.. and he was not retired.. anyway Scummer or not I've just had three phone calls from fans of other clubs asking wtf is your manager doing .... This is laughing stock material !! .. I'm sorry I have tried to stand behind Paul Hart .. but with the 30k a week offer for Viduka, a probably contract for Bopp, the signing of Neimi and the release of Arnold in one day .. have all but done me in... Don't tell me it's financial, don't tell me it's tactical .. IT IS IMCOMPETENCE...
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 15:49:00

maybe not the comment instantly above this one, the 'imcompetence' once, but others are more driven by his scummer roots methinks chixy, no?
'if' we have signed him to replace jamo i will be *****ed! if we have signed him as experienced cover - as i think ashdown is done, im not sure he will leave, but not sure his back can take it anymore - and begovic goes out on loan to a championship or top league 1 club, maybe even abroad this will not be a bad thing. i know he could learn from jamo but feel he will learn more by playing week-in-week-out.
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 16:01:00

as for hart, and 'standing behind him' what i think you have to remember is hart doesnt discuss the contracts on offer - so is it fair to blame him for a 30k a week contract offer to viduka? not trying to pick an argument, but i say no...
mvuemba has been on the way out all summer so that is not hart's fault either...
bopp on the other hand, there is no covering for - that is inexcusable as the guy is, sorry, a joke.
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 16:06:00

Chix have you been following the cricket today? You seem to be in a bit of a hysterical mood! :p Niemi will never challenge James, but we need some sort of cover as Bergovic goes on loan and we sell ashdown. Cheap signing if you ask me.
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 16:08:00

Report Abuse
07/08/2009 16:10:00

Guys whoever is to blame I don't really care.. if you prefer 'The people' running our club are incompetent ! .. Is that better? It just beggars belief .. are you seriously telling me Neimi was the best and chepest option for us .. and as for Ashdowns back well what about Niemi Wrist .. He retired because of injury and now suddenly all is ok .. 30,000 pw is ludicrous for Viduka, Bopp I've yet to see but don't hold out much hope for and Mvuemba although not a superstar and although having unofficially 'left' in the summer deserved more form the club than a 'one-liner' on a statement about the signing of a reserve goalkeeper.. I'm sorry but today has been absolutely awful as far as Pompey news go and I'm really struggling to see how I can 'honestly' get behind the team.. I'd rather see the youngster get dicked 10-0 everyweek than watch over the hill has beens who don't give a toss about the club pick up a wage packet from a club who supposedly has not money...
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 16:23:00

you will get behind them as pompey is in the blood - that is the simple and honest answer...
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 16:26:00

You know me too well mate.. but they better work their fingers to the bone I don't think anybody who wants a free ride is gonna be tolerated this season. I could cope with Merse, Sherri, Berger, Stone (even Kanu to an extent) as oldies .. but Mark Viduka = Andy Cole for me ... Get as much money as you can and just sit around and eat lard !
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 16:33:00

A bit of experience in back up and a senior pro at the club is good - especially if it calms the younger players
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 17:13:00

Good signing. Scummer or not! Ashdown is simply poor, and I would feak out if he ever had to goalkeep our goal. He was horrible when given the chance, few weeks before we won the cup! Begovic needs some games, so this might be a good option!
Pompey Malta
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 17:55:00

True Jim...But not 15 of them...add in ones we are supposedly looking at and our average age will seriously make SAGA kick themselves, they didn't take up the Shirt sponsorship and pay for it in free magazine subscriptions for the team and surplus Milk tokens!
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 17:57:00

Hermann, Kanu, James, Finnan, Distin, how much experience do we need around he place..
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 18:53:00

You can never have enough experienced EPL goalies, and this guy is solid. Good pick up I reckon.
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 20:01:00

...and when Begovic comes back after his loan, we can send Niemi to the Spuds for a couple of mil :-)
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 20:02:00

Now only if we could Toronto..
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 20:27:00

Oh my! going from bad to worse!
Report Abuse
07/08/2009 21:22:00


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