James to carry on, and with Pompey?
With David James making it clear that he WILL continue playing next season and WOULD be willing to stay with Pompey, not to mention the fact that management IS something that he wants to venture into, are we not in an 'ideal' situation to take 'advantage' of this?
There have been question marks over Avram Grant, not 'will he' carry on but do people 'want him' to carry on?
All in all, and primarily as he 'gets it' with Pompey, the majority WOULD like him to carry on and build his own side then judge him on that, which I think is fair - for me the chances, albeit viewed as 'slim chances' that we could retain some players 'if' he does are, for me, greater.
A 'maximum' of £30,000 per week has been 'quoted' as being what Pompey will offer out to players, is it just me or does that seem 'high', which begs the question if our 'highest earners' are on this anyway, are they really?
Although this is another matter altogether, back to the point, which was James...
In all honesty we MUST admit that there have been times this season when most of us have 'questioned' James' 'loyalty' to Pompey, was it him wanting out, or was this purely just the media 'playing silly beggars' as they do, making it seem that way?
At times it did seem James was a 'guilty party,' but all in all, and given his actions in leading some in 'helping others' and the 'waiving' of an automatic contract etc. it does seem - even if, admittedly, this might have been England driven in a way - as though James is actually the 'genuine' person I had always had him pegged down as being, even if this thinking waivered throughout January...
Even given his injury problems this season, and chances are these will carry on for the duration of his career - however long this may be - I still feel that the guy has something to offer and could have a big influence on our season, on and off the field, next season so would be MORE than happy to retain him.
I have this feeling that if we put a new contract in front of him now, although being in admin this is a tough thing to do, he would sign it - and on reduced terms as well.
He might be aging and 'potentially' injury riddled but for me is still a top quality keeper, so would I be alone in wanting him as our no.1 next season?
This would mean that mean that Jamie Ashdown left, but with all due respect to the guy I think this is needed anyway whatever happen, but also opens the door to Liam O'Brien to further learn from James, with the help of David Coles - touch wood - and that can only benefit us further in the future, right?
Could we not also have the option to offer a 'player coach' role to James, so he could help assist Grant, should he stay? Ok, perhaps this is a 'risk' but 'if' Grant does decide to move on could we not take a 'calculated risk' and try the appointment of James as 'player manager?'
There are a lot of 'ifs, ands, buts and maybes' in this thinking but I can see the benefits of trying James down to a new contract if he is willing to take one, which, from the sounds of it he is and he is NOT financially motivated either...
PLAY UP POMPEY!