Vital Football

O'Brien shown the door

O'Brien shown the door

It has been confirmed, not officially but in The News, by Steve Cotterill that Liam O'Brien has had his contract terminated.

Cotterill says that this decision is based purely on his ability as he does not believe that the U19 international possesses the quality that he feels he needs to make the grade at Fratton, with his seemingly unsuccessful loan spell with Eastbourne confirming this for him: 'it's a balancing act and Liam was out of contract at the end of the season.

'He has been released, not based on us signing any players, but personal judgement and whether he was going to play here or not.

'We have looked at that, he's only a young boy and needs to go out and get on with his career.

'I think by him being a free transfer it may make it easier for him to get a club and we have circulated his name.

'He's been out on loan at Eastbourne, had a couple of games, then they left him out of the team so we had to make a judgement. And that's what we decided to do.'

It is 'said' that O'Brien has been 'tough' to work with sometimes, and perhaps got a little ahead of himself on how good he may well have been, although he knuckled down and got on with it, but getting on with the goalkeeping coach is not something that he has been able to do by all accounts.

'Word on the street' also says that many of the youngsters are not being treated that well, in fact they are almost being 'bullied' and completely overlooked with some of them not even being spoken to by senior management - one injured player had not even been checked on, so others are likely to follow O'Brien out the door methinks.

I am disappointed as I am of the opinion that he is a decent keeper, but I guess when all is said and done we have to accept the judgement of the club as Cotterill is the manager and knows best although I cannot help but think that this is a mistake and one that we will regret, although time will tell I guess.

What I find most disappointing, in fact disrespectful, about this whole thing is the fact that a Pompey player has been released yet there is NO mention of it on The Pompey Site - it was not even covered when he went out on loan! Surely it would be common courtesy to publish something and wish him the best, a few lines at the end of another article in the local rag is, for me, not the way to go about things...

EDIT: I have to hold my hands up and apologise to The Pompey Site over an issue with something I wrote here - the club did in actual fact announce the loan that O'Brien undertook with Eastbourne.


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  • Writer:pompeyrug
    Date:Friday October 8 2010
    Time: 5:00PM


    To be fair to the O/S, they DID cover O'Brien being loaned to Eastbourne:
    scott mc
    08/10/2010 17:13:00
    So this is the same O'Brien that Chelsea and Man Utd also tried to sign. Surely that suggests that he has talent. Ok so perhaps he has a big head, but that is something that should be managed. Can't help but loosing Begovic and O'Brien in the same year is pretty suicidal!
    08/10/2010 17:16:00
    Has anyone actually seen him play?
    08/10/2010 17:38:00
    Since David Coles left the keeper coaching has been poor to say the least. Flahaven is there as cover only and will not play, apart from a sending off in a match. SC has made it clear by ignoring the youth team players (they can only communicate with him through his coaches) that he does not want them around the club. There is a problem with the manager and the academy and its staff also. The youth team know there is no chance of progression under this manager,and that feeling runs through the whole academy. i would expect it to be wound up in the not so distant future. As for O'Brien his problems start and finish with cotterill and keeley. having been selected by noel blake for England u19s in the european championships (And told he would be first choice) it was a kick in the teeth to be withdrawn to go on the ridiculous USA tour. Although this was a huge kick in the teeth, he was happy to go and was told by cotterill he would go as number one and he would see how he performed. Imagine the lads dissapointment when 2 other keepers turned up at the airport including ashdown who had walked away from the club when they were in trouble, only to discover no one wanted him. liam only started as first choice once jon stewart broke his leg. Once back he played as number 2 with great proffesionalism but was totally ignored by cotterill. He was sent to Eaastbourne by the club despite being advised not to go as he was on a hiding to nothing. thrown in at Barrow having never met his new team and without a game since 22nd july, and this for a team with the most goals conceeded in the conference. Eastbournes first choice who they had just signed was serving a one match ban and would return to the team no matter what liam played like. That was where he was pig headed, he thought he could proove them all wrong. To date 6 clubs have now registered an interest in him, despite cotterills stinging attack on an 18 year old, and this from a man who has had little or no success of his own. Last March Ray Clemence told liams agent that he thought liam would play for Englands first team within 5 years, but that he would need to be carefull when making contract decisions, and where he played his football. A lot of good judges felt he made the wrong decision coming to pompey in the first place, but paul hart was a big factor as was david coles. What is dissapointing is he could have gone last season when top clubs were in his and his agents ear, but he loved avram and colesy and wanted to stay loyal to them and the club, unfortunately that loyalty has not been returned but thats football. i just hope that this is not the final nail in the coffin of all the good kids at pompey.
    08/10/2010 17:59:00
    don't think i could say it any better or add much Upland, i'm so disappointed by this i don't think i can find the words. when the club is under such financial restraints we need the youth players to come through and make it in the 1st team and Cotteril obviously has no intent what so ever to do this, he can stay to the end of the season and sod off in my opinion no matter how well he does, we NEED a youth set up, more now than ever!
    08/10/2010 18:57:00
    What a great shame, I thought he showed promise when he played in the Havant friendly, and it seems Noel Blake agreed. I am concerned about this attitude towards the youngsters! Good luck to Liam, perhaps he'll find another club that will prove the making of him. I hope so, he deserves it.
    08/10/2010 19:08:00
    that will come back to haunt us. i have seen him in a few reserve games last year and he looked very decent, in fact alot more confident looking than ashdown, we really do shoot ourselves in the foot, pathetic decision
    Super Bock 1898
    08/10/2010 19:22:00
    Stunningly stupid decision, which speaks volumes about the weakness issues in the managers personality.
    08/10/2010 20:44:00
    Its a shae he has gone. Was a good keeper and has a greatr future ahead of him. Would of been great to of kept him.
    08/10/2010 22:11:00
    "Stunningly stupid decision, which speaks volumes about the weakness issues in the managers personality"......russellm, how right you are. I couldn't have put it better myself. Quote of the week in my opinion. Almost beggars belief.
    09/10/2010 07:07:00
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