Toast 6#2 -Appy Bunch come a cropper!
What a crazy game football is and what a crazy day yesterday was. The end of August and games postponed, abandoned and suspended. Hartlepool failing to turn up at Leyton Orient and at Brunton Park four goals in the last minute!
Pompey made the trip to the Northern most outpost of English football and returned empty handed after what the official site described as 'a below par performance`. The unbeaten record is out of the window and the promising start derailed. That of course was always going to be the danger when the squad is paper thin and the sending off of Kevin Long for two yellow cards will not help the slim resources.
Pompey`s two goals in the farcical finish were both firsts - Ashley Harris on for Luke Rogers and Connor Clifford replacing Izale McLeod - although as Appy said afterwards too little, too late!
Pompey now have a week off due to their early exit from the League Cup. That time needs to be spent on fitness and familiarity. Perhaps a few new signings would not go amiss either.
In Appy we trust!
Pen pics Part 2 - on loan
• Mikkel Andersen - 23-year-old keeper (Reading) Danish U21 international goalkeeper who has impressed to so far at Fratton Park. The 6ft 5in custodian has never made the first team at the Majedski but has been on loan at many clubs with Bristol Rovers being the longest where he played over sixty games.
• Conor Clifford - 20-year-old midfielder (Chelsea) Irish U21 International midfield player who joined Chelsea from Dublin club Crumlin United. Another who has been on loan at several clubs.
• Paul Connolly - 28-year-old defender (Leeds United) ex Plymouth and Derby right back joined on a one month stint from Leeds earlier this month. Has been converted by boss Michael Appleton into a centre back to cover a gap in the small squad and has impressed in his new role.
• Kevin Long - 22-year-old defender (Burnley) another Irishman who has yet to play for his parent club but has picked up plenty of experience on loan at Accrington Stanley.
• Jordan Obita - 18-year-old winger (Reading) Exciting young player scored on his league debut at Colchester last week.
Expect more arrivals soon!
The pre-season trip to Gibraltar was criticised widely by fans but thanks to the funding of local businessman Dave Ellis it went ahead allowing the trialists that Appy had attracted to gel and as an absolute bonus they discovered Liam Walker. His debut at Colchester has made a lot of people sit up and ask where has he been? The only problem for Pompey at the moment is that with players only on monthly contracts valuable assets could be stolen from under their noses with no compensation payable!
Ticket prices have been slashed for Pompey`s Johnstone`s Paint Trophy clash with Bournemouth.
The first round tie will be played at Fratton Park on Tuesday, September 4 (7.45pm kick-off).
Seats are priced £10 for adults, £5 for seniors (60+) and young persons (17-22) and just £1 for juniors (under 17).
The game is of course Pompey`s first in the competition and is being shown live on Sky Sports.
Northampton or Wembley?
Talk in the Pompey pubs on Friday night was of the ever increasing number of parties looking to invest in the club. Then a question was posed - not for the first time - as to whether fans would give up the Wembley glory and the Premier League times for a financially secure club. A question of course which cannot be answered but I gather the local then went on to discuss whether fans enjoyed promotion at Northampton in 1980 more than winning the FA Cup at Wembley in 2008?
Now that is a question worth debating in full over a pint or three. For a large number of fans Northampton was the first time they had something to celebrate in their Pompey supporting career, me included. And we all enjoyed it, large number were to be found in Trafalgar Square fountains late into the night.
Next Saturday Oldham Athletic come to town - old Pompey adversary Paul Dickov is their boss and familiar names in their squad are hard to find. They only had 3,142 at their game with Stevenage yesterday so don`t expect too many visitors on the Milton End.
Last week Chix asked what was the highest cumulative total of squad numbers worn by a side in England. This was after Pompey fielded an entire youth side in the game at Plymouth.
Not got a clue I`m afraid old mate nor have I had any luck in my research - anyone help?