Date:Monday May 8 2006
A disappointing start to the season in which Pompey gained only a solitary point (against Villa). Of the 4 matches contested Pompey had lost 3 and were in 18th position.
An improved league position following a win on the road at Everton. The month ended all square with a win, a draw and a loss. Those additional 4 points moved Pompey up to 17th just above the drop zone on 5pts.
Another fair month which provided the biggest win of the season in a 4-1 win at Sunderland. 2 draws with the other North East clubs and yet another loss at the hands of Charlton saw Pompey climb to 14th on the ladder on 10pts.
Not a pleasant month as 3 losses to Wigan, Liverpool and Chelsea without a solitary goal pushed Pompey back on to the edge of the precipice in 17th position. Points remained on 10.
This was to prove a mixed month in more ways than one. It signalled the departure of Alain Perrin, following a 3-0 loss at Old Trafford and the return of Harry Redknapp whose baptism was an unfortunate loss to Tottenham. On a brighter note it did bring us our first Home win of the season compliments of West Brom (and I was personally on hand from Australia to witness it). After surrendering meekly to Arsenal Pompey finished the month, and year, on a high note with another 3 pts collected at the expense of Fulham. We were still in the bottom 3 though in 18th with 17pts to our tally.
The New Year did not bare any fruit, the transfer window opened, several new faces arrived, Gaydak’s investment was put to the test but this month yielded no points at all. The worst performance of the season was saved up for fellow battlers Birmingham, and battered we were to the tune of 5-0. Most Pompey fans at this point were resigned to playing Championship football next season and the gloom and Doom merchants descended on the Fratton outfit (inc. one pompeygray). Position 19th. Points 17.
Things were now going from bad to worse. Only a further point would be picked up at home to Bolton. The only good thing to come out of February was the fact that we would not be playing any of the top 3 anymore. Pressure was mounting on Redknapp and Gaydamak must have thought he backed a loser; in fact we were lemon material. Position 19th. Points 18.
A key turning point in Pompey’s ultimate survival must surely have been when Mendes blasted in the winner against Man City in the dying seconds. This revitalized and transformed Pompey overnight and gave them the self belief that would enable them to carry on the fight. This month was also the first month that Pompey would win more games than they lost. Position remained at 19th. Points accumulated to 24.
April was to prove the best month by far. 4 unbelievable wins and a draw with high flying Euro Champions contenders Arsenal took Pompey out of the bottom 3 for the first time for months. The 2-1 win at Wigan, and Birmingham’s failure to beat Newcastle condemned both Brum and Brom to the Fizzy Pop League and guaranteed Pompey Premiership status. Position elevated to 17th. Points 38.
Only match here was V Liverpool and although Pompey went down, the mood stayed buoyant as the Premiership end of season party got underway. Final Position 17th meant survival had been achieved. Points 38.
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