Portsmouth - A blow or boost for youth development?
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A blow or boost for youth development?

Has the youth of Pompey suffered another blow, or will this now take a step in the right direction again?

The biggest blow that the youth set-up of Pompey could have taken came a few years back when Paul Hart was promoted into the role of 'caretaker manager', eventually permanent manager as that meant his input into the development of the future of Pompey was lost.

A 1st team manager role is not one for Harty, and sadly from the second he stepped up we had lost him in the youth area for good...

In the summer of 2009 came the appointment of Paul Smalley.

This was 'meant' to herald a new era for Pompey as his background of working with, and helping the development, of youngsters was 'said' to be good.

Fast forward to the present day and The News yesterday reported 'Paul Smalley has left Pompey with immediate effect.

'The head of youth operations yesterday came to a mutual agreement with the Blues to depart the role he has occupied since July 2009.'

I have to say that I have had serious concerns about the future of player development at Fratton for a while now, and I fear that we are starting to take a path, and to be fair have been on this for a while now, that is heading us towards 'virtually' bringing an end to this area for the club?

The importance of having a youth set-up with Pompey cannot be stressed enough, it IS vital that we do this as our future may very well hinge on us doing this!

The production of our own 'produce', if you will, can save plenty of money not to mention earn us some as well - of course we do not want to be a 'selling club' but realistically if we can develop a young talent and then sell him for several million needs must, right?

This can then be put back into further development and the running of the club. In theory anyway!

It is said that we 'will now seek to recruit a replacement'.

We just have to hope that we do just that and when we do we bring in someone that can help get our youth development back on track.

Also we have to hope that this is an area that the club want to do want to work with again and it was simple not working out with Smalley and nothing to do with a lack of interest in this area anymore, so his departure will be beneficial. The club has been losing its way in this area - and virtually every area - in recent times after putting so much time, effort and money into building this up.

Please Pompey do not let the youth development of this club die off, if we do this then the consequences for this club could also be terminal...


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  • The Journalist

    Writer: pompeyrug Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

    Date:Sunday December 19 2010

    Time: 9:47AM

    Your Comments (oldest first)

    Change to most recent first
    This was on the OS yesterday with quotes from Smalley and Lampitt
    Report Abuse
    19/12/2010 11:08:00

    don't think smalley was doing that great a job so don't really see it as a blow, and Cotterill commented at the beginning of the season the youth set-up needed a lot of work so sounds like it was a waste of money anyway, but how really knows
    Report Abuse
    19/12/2010 11:51:00

    We need a strong youth production line; they have to be given the chance to play in the first team young. How old were Rooney, Owen, and Rodwell etc when they were given their chance? I think I'm right but anyone this age would be exempt from the limit of 20 players.
    Report Abuse
    19/12/2010 12:11:00

    The Truth is Sc has made himself as popular as Herpes amongst the young players at the club. He never bothers to watch them play and has treated some like ****...Paul Smalley stood up to him and thats that. They hated him at Burnley as well...Hes done well with the first team so far but has put our youth development back ten years. When every other club can see the benefit of youngsters coming through, our steve keeps on swimming in his own bull****.
    Report Abuse
    19/12/2010 14:10:00

    I agree with you to a certain point landblue. In fact I am very pleased Ward has been playing and has played a role this season so far. I don't like the idea of moaning about lack of numbers and having some great young talent playing in the lower leagues when they can give us the numbers we need and maybe, who knows, some new fresh blood.
    Pompey Malta
    Report Abuse
    19/12/2010 17:15:00

    Uplandblue I think you have a lot of it right, I don't see there being any youth development at the moment. Youth development is expensive and the success rate is about 1:50. Pompey don't have the money and Cotterille isn't interested; I suspect - but don't have any evidence- Cot could have the same deal as Mr 10% Redknapp. Lol bit unlucky picking Portsmouth, don't see much in the way of player movement.
    Report Abuse
    19/12/2010 20:33:00

    a bloke i meet occasionally through work has a nephew at the club in the youth set up, and he says Smalley is an idiot who plays long ball all the time.
    plymouth graham
    Report Abuse
    19/12/2010 21:32:00

    a bloke i meet occasionally through work has a nephew at the club in the youth set up, and he says Smalley is an idiot who plays long ball all the time.
    plymouth graham
    Report Abuse
    19/12/2010 21:32:00


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