Vital Football

Burnley v Pompey - the Burnley view

Burnley v Pompey - the Burnley view

Ahead of this weekend's match against Burnley I had the opportunity to talk to Vital Burnley editor turfmanphil on his thoughts about the current state of the club and his thoughts on their chances this weekend. Here are his responses...

Eddie Howe is now approaching his first anniversary at the club and to date has had a reasonably successful spell at the helm. Do you feel he is the right man to take Burnley forward?
The truth is he is still unproven at this level and the jury is still out. Most Clarets fans are probably still optimistic he can do a good job but with the club at times not firing on all cylinders and at our lowest point, being just 12 minutes away from being in the drop zone away to Hull at 2-0 down, some doubts are bound to creep in. Others, like me believe he has not been dealt a particularly good hand by the Board. It's as though the season in the top flight has counted for nothing financially despite all the hype that it would. We seem to be back to selling all our key players again, reducing the salary cap, losing our experienced players (because they cost more?) and bringing in young kids with potential from the lower leagues. The club now spout we are a team in transition whereas during the period they wanted to sell early bird season tickets, we were a club just needing 2-3 players to become a strong, promotion-winning possibility! Yeah right!

After missing out on the play-offs by a few places last season, do you feel the club is better equipped for a top 6 push this season, and realistically what are your hopes/expectations for the season?
I don't believe we are a strong candidate for promotion now but had high hopes in the close season that we would be until the type of transfers in and out of the club reduced our chances. I think we still have a chance but now we are just one of about 15 hopefuls suffering from inconsistency. If we can crack that problem then we should have a chance being currently just five points off the play-offs positions. Two defeats (or more) on the bounce though and you are back in the doldrums again! I suspect our squad from last season, had they still been together now would have been a better bet for promotion this season but that is pure conjecture.

This year's Burnley squad looks very different in terms of youth, with only 3 players in your squad above the age of 27. Do you feel Howe has done the right thing by pushing the younger players ahead of the more experienced heads?
Time will tell, but with the FIFA Fair Play ruling about to kick in and with our low turnover, now is not the time in my opinion to experiment with transitional squads. The parachute payments will not last forever and it's critical we get promotion sooner rather than later or we will simply be unable to compete in the Championship. We should be having the financial balls to go for promotion now and show more ambition.

Confidence should be high for you boys coming into this game, after the late comeback at Hull which saw you win 3-2 after being 2-0 down with 12 minutes to play (and subsequently ruining one of my bets), which started a run where you picked up 9 points in a week. Do you feel that consistency has eluded you at times this season, and how important do you feel confidence is within such a young team?
Yes, I refer to this consistency issue above and we have certainly suffered from the lack of it. We are now on a roll so let's see if we can plough on and move up the table. We need a leader in the team to boost confidence when things are going badly. Chris McCann is the captain, but he is inexperienced and not very vocal. Some fans think we need someone who is more experienced and animated.

Who should Pompey be wary of coming into this match, which players have performed well and who is looking like the gem in the team so far this season?
Defence is our weakest area at the moment but there have been improvements recently. In midfield, Marvin Bartley can be a handful and so can Ross Wallace (flank or playing in hole). Striker, Sam Vokes, on loan from Wolves looks to be settling in well and now getting on the score sheet but our leading goal-scorer, Charlie Austin could be back on Saturday after recovering from yet another dislocated shoulder. We will probably play 4-4-2 at home, so Vokes or Austin in combination with Rodriguez up front could cause you problems.

Finally, what are your predictions for the match?
Depends which team turns up. If we continue with our recent form, I think you will struggle to get a point. We have witnessed some horror shows at home this season though so you will have to hope for one of those. 3-1 Clarets for me though!


Many thanks for helping out with this and here's hoping for a decent match. Be sure to take a wonder over to Vital Burnley to get involved with some friendly banter between the 2 sets of fans.

Their "Matchday Mayhem" thread can be found here.

PLAY UP POMPEY!

Click here to make your prediction: Burnley Pompey.

Join the Vital Pompey Debate

Vital Pompey on: facebook Vital Pompey on: twitter

Join the Vital Pompey Forum Debate

Frippy's Virtual Bookies - here.



Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

Writer:PompeyFrippy
Date:Friday December 9 2011
Time: 3:44PM

Login to post a comment

Recent Portsmouth Articles

Fratton team sheets - Pompey v Bristol Rovers

Pompey are at Fratton with Bristol Rovers the visitors for our league two match. This is a 3pm kick-off, as was intended by the football gods when the beautiful game was invented!

On this day in history...13th February

A look back at this day in history, and what was happening with Pompey courtesy of our sister site PompeyRama, 13th February.

Big Ben returns!

There's no doubting how important Davies is to us, we most definitely missed the former Sheffield United man against Orient but Cook's confirmed he'll start against Bristol Rovers.

Winning over the fans

Cook feels he still has to 'win over a proportion' of the fans at Pompey?

Archived Vital Pompey Articles

Vital Pompey articles from

Site Journalists

pompeyrug
Profile
eastneydave
Profile
paultsmouth
Profile
Chix
Profile

Current Poll (see more polls)

Bristol Rovers MotM
Suggested By:
Fulton0%
Davies0%
Burgess0%
Webster0%
Stevens0%
Doyle0%
Close0%
Roberts0%
Evans0%
Bennett0%
Smith0%
ScoopDragon Publishing Entire League Network of Sites

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
1 Northampton 28 19 4 5 61 20
2 Plymouth 29 17 5 7 56 17
3 Oxford 28 14 10 4 52 19
4 Mansfield 31 13 9 9 48 9
5 Bristol Rovers 29 14 5 10 47 10
6 Wycombe 29 13 7 9 46 6
7 Leyton Orient 30 12 10 8 46 5
8 Portsmouth 28 11 12 5 45 20
9 Accrington 26 13 6 7 45 12
10 Cambridge 30 12 8 10 44 3
11 Wimbledon 28 11 9 8 42 7
12 Carlisle 26 11 9 6 42 5
13 Exeter 28 11 7 10 40 -1
14 Luton 30 10 8 12 38 1
15 Crawley 30 11 4 15 37 -13
16 Morecambe 30 10 6 14 36 -3
17 Notts County 27 10 6 11 36 -6
18 Barnet 28 9 6 13 33 -8
19 Stevenage 31 7 10 14 31 -14
20 Newport 28 6 9 13 27 -11
21 Yeovil 29 5 9 15 24 -14
22 Hartlepool 26 7 3 16 24 -19
23 Dag & Red 29 4 8 17 20 -22
24 York 28 4 8 16 20 -23
Latest F1 News
Latest Vital Boxing News

Portsmouth Fixtures (view all)

Feb 13 2016 3:00PM : Bristol Rovers (H)
Sky Bet League Two
Feb 20 2016 3:00PM : Yeovil Town (a)
Sky Bet League Two
Feb 23 2016 7:45PM : Barnet (a)
Sky Bet League Two
Feb 27 2016 3:00PM : Cambridge United (H)
Sky Bet League Two
Mar 1 2016 7:45PM : Exeter City (a)
Sky Bet League Two
Mar 5 2016 3:00PM : Stevenage (a)
Sky Bet League Two

Recent Portsmouth Results (view all)

Vital Members League Table

RankNamePoints
1.pompeyrug62
2.Jimsmithswig25
3.storagematt20
4.Pompeytim19
5.FrattonBlue17
6.Copnor4314
7.mslorna489
8.Emsworthianblue7
9.cornypomp4
10.PFCblue4