Sunday Toast Season 3 # 3 - a week of fours
Wow what a busy week four goals against the Bulls on Tuesday and four new signings on Friday. I thought they said things happen in threes? And of course between the two we have the takeover by Dr SAF confirmed but not sure if we are dropping the 'Dr` or not.
We will not write anymore on the takeover other than relief that it has happened and that desperately needed stability has arrived. What the future holds and all the possible doubts that go with it are for others to script in their own words.
Regular readers will know the Toast team is a motley crew who attempt to pick up scraps of information from hopefully reliable sources to let you the fan know what you may or may not want to know. Well this week has been very busy trying to track the arrival of new signings. It is difficult putting moles into the boots of taxis just to find out who is being collected from Airports, railway stations and other clubs.
Well to an extent we did manage it first hearing of a player, father and agent arriving from Johannesburg earlier in the week - never did find out who that was. Then Friday it all went mad. The problem was if you do not know what they look like how do you tell Assis from Aissa? Then Jamie O`Hara is delayed while he signs a contract extension to 2013 at White Hart Lane before joining Pompey on loan.
It is not easy but through it all we kept the Toast editorial team in touch with developments as best we could. Some players actually failed to show at all. I suppose we have a few more days like that yet.
On the subject with the loan signing of Jamie O'Hara that leaves one place for a further temporary signing from an English club. Who do we fancy? Here at Toast we would welcome back Arnand Traore whose rise to the Gunners first team has been blocked by the return to full fitness of Gael Clichy.
What do you think Toasters? Here are Rug`s own thoughts on some of the possibilities.
Philippe Senderos - Yep I know he is a donkey at times but if he was really that bad would Arsenal have him on their books and would Milan have taken him on loan last season? I cannot really see him getting a look-in this season, so why not?
Carlos Vela - A top talent that will have a fine future with the Gunners but will he play much of a role this season? Do we need another striker though - although one of his quality would be a big plus, right?
Jack Wilshere - I think this kid is a top class talent who will go all the way, although I suspect that he will actually be fairly heavily involved in their 1st team this season so why loan him out - although that said we now have an abundance of midfielders, but what quality the guy has!
Johan Djourou - In a similar kind of position as Senderos although I would suspect he is higher up the order of merit than his countryman, yet still very much on the outside looking in. We have looked at loaning him before so why not return for another bite?
Armand Traore - We know what he can do at his best from the loan last season, the partnership with Nadir Belhadj was dynamite so could this be worth looking at again as when they combined it was a joy to watch down the left hand side.
Branislav Ivanovic - Enjoyed a fairly extended run in the side last season and is capable of playing at full back or in central defence. If he is far enough down the order of merit maybe they would see the benefits of loaning him out? Although I suspect he is still in the 1st team thoughts.
Paulo Ferreira - Vastly experienced Portuguese international who is probably someway down the thought process at the moment. Primarily a full back though but could maybe slot into central defence?
Juliano Belletti - Another vastly experienced player that has been with some of Europe's top sides. More than capable of playing at the back but more of a full back although he has been mainly used in a midfield role at Chelski in recent times.
Some names to mull over, some that I would consider more than others but certainly something to think about and most would offer us something worth having...
We have been through the list now so they will be brief unless something of interest has occurred. Remember to click the name for the link to view the Pompeyrama stats on the player.
Richard Duffy is 24 - the world`s most loaned player is now at Millwall
Svetoslav Todorov is 31
Ian Collard is 52
Mickey Ross is 38
John Curtis is 31
Lee Russell is 40
Brian Bason is 54
Archie Styles is 60
John Curtis is 43
Steve Bryant is 56
Steve Davey is 61 - not a name well known to newer fans but Steve one of Pompey`s many signings from Plymouth was Mr Reliable in the Fourth Division days. He came as a striker but played most of his games in the back line. Scored only one goal in the 1979/80 promotion season and that was the first goal in the 2-0 win at Northampton when promotion was clinched - JUST!
Barry Cordjohn is 67
John Armstrong is 73
Welcome to Tommy
Tommy seems to have been at Watford all of his career but he did have three years trying other clubs. We will let Watford`s official site tell the story.
Tommy Smith, a firm favourite with the fans and a fine model of a Watford player returned to Hertfordshire in September 2006 after joining Sunderland in 2003.
The Hemel Hempstead-born winger is a graduate of the successful Academy at the club but left to join Sunderland in September 2003.
After a season in the north-east he joined Derby County where he played under George Burley. It was here he developed as a player and turned into more of wide-man rather than a striker.
Burley used a front three system with Smith on one wing and he has since developed into a tricky wide player.
Smith suffered the heartache of the lottery of the play-offs as Derby went out to Preston in the semi-finals in 2005.
The Watford Academy graduate had the chance to return home to the Vic and he made his second debut against Bolton Wanderers at the Reebok Stadium in 2006. He continued to have success and made 37 appearances for the 'Orns during their Premiership campaign.
A crucial player at Watford, along with fellow winger Jobi McAnuff, Tommy was hailed as the Player of The Year for all of his hard work and effort during his 46 appearances in the 2007-08 season.
Success continued for the local lad with the 2008/09 season seeing Smith net a record 17 goals in the season, voted the top Championship midfielder and the second top player overall in the League.
Although there was much speculation over the Watford forward's future at WD18 in the January 2009 transfer window; the player stayed firm to his roots and stayed at the club.
Smith won Player of the Year in 2009; keeping the title for another year. His height varies depending on the tape measure! It varies from 5ft 7in to 5ft 10in.
We all wish Tommy well at Fratton Park and hope the goals start coming today against Citeh.
UEFA are experimenting with an extra two assistant referees in this seasons Europa Cup league stages. Sounds good to me and hopefully that with the use of video technology will prove to FIFA that changes must be made.
Interesting times and we look forward to watching some of the games in the weeks ahead.
Adieu numéro quinze
Farewell to Syvain Distin. The often loved Frenchman decided he did not have the belly for the fight and joined the only club below us in the league!!
Last week we bade Sol goodbye and correctly predicted he would move on to Notts County. This week it is his partner for two seasons who is off. Memories for Syvain are mixed but mostly cherished. Who will ever forget the goal line tackle to prevent Michael Carrick putting United ahead in the FA Cup quarter final; or of course his FA Cup winning celebrations with no 15 emblazoned across his chest!
There were of course a few things to forget and perhaps the regret that he never created a goal on his forages up field that he loved so much.
Finally just a word to thanks Peter Storrie for all the hard work that he has put in this week to conclude vital signings despite his obvious anguish following the news if SAF`s successful takeover.
Peter, you are the crucial factor in the future of the club and it is now vital that you continue doing your job as you have in the past. The fans appreciate your efforts and would wish them to continue in the future.