Vital Football

The Weekend that Was

The Weekend that Was

The Weekend that Was…

After seeing off Premiership new-boys Reading in classy style, Portsmouth find themselves halfway to safety with only a quarter of the season gone. An own goal, an exquisite header from King Kanu and a Mendes special reminded the rest of the Premiership that Portsmouth`s good start may threaten to be a good season…

Looking at the fixture list at the beginning of the campaign, a win at home against Reading should mean as much as losing to Chelsea away. Nothing, standard results that should be coming from a team looking to consolidate itself mid-table rather than flirting with the drop season after season.

But looking at the games rather than the results, and the progress this year is put clearly into focus. Chelsea battered Portsmouth`s defence, and though you could say should have come away having scored more than two goals, found themselves almost scraping past a resilient Pompey, after Benjani`s scrambled-home goal.

Looking at Reading, and the converse is true. Newly-promoted with the novelty of the Premiership wearing off, Reading at Fratton Park looked winnable but with a degree of difficulty about drawing out the result a few months ago. But on Saturday, a new Portsmouth reared its head, one that was finally capable of putting a team to the sword at will. It was the same team that turned up at the Riverside, when Middlesbrough were thoroughly humbled, and it will hopefully be the same team that comes out time and again as the season spins on its merry way.

But let`s not get too carried away about a win against Reading. People are calling it the end of a slump, after losing four of the last five games, but one was to Chelsea and one in the Carling Cup (with a poor second team, though that`s a discussion for another time), so Portsmouth`s form isn`t really that perilous when you think about it.

Harry Redknapp welcomed back key players in defence where Reading are still struggling without hit-man Dave Kitson, the man who fired them up into the Premiership. Steve Coppell has done well with a threadbare side and budget, and one hopes that he`ll steer his side to safety, but they were on the whole toothless at Fratton Park.

The same can be said about an 'unlucky` loss to Chelsea. Countless teams have gone to Stamford Bridge and come close to getting a result, but have just fallen short. That`s why Chelsea are champions, because they can eke out the decisive performance where other teams falter. So a good performance put in by Portsmouth, but without a win, they might as well have lost by two or three more, because only results matter in this game (credit: Steve Coppell after losing this weekend)

Effectively, and in a very long winded way, I`m trying to say let`s not get carried away. Harry has done what Milan Mandaric put into motion nearly seven years ago, building a team capable of retaining Premiership safety easily. But a good performance against Chelsea and wins against Charlton, West Ham and Reading is hardly Champion`s League place worthy, is it?

So a good win over Reading should be looked at for exactly what it is. A win against a team that might struggle to stay in the Premiership once injuries and suspensions take their toll. And let`s be honest, Portsmouth could probably do with one or two additions to the squad in January, particularly in the defence, as without Campbell and Primus quite a few more goals might start leaking in.

Oh, and one more thing. Let`s hope that Benjani`s misses were a one off, and we don`t have a hard-working Heskey in the making…

G-Funk

Send your thoughts, comments and views to big.g.funk@googlemail.com


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

Writer:
Date:Tuesday October 31 2006
Time: 7:54PM

Comments

0
Well he (Benjani) is pretty good at missing them. Kamara was another that springs to mind. "REDKNAPP LOOKS FOR NEW FACE IN NEW YEAR"....
pompeygray
31/10/2006 21:15:00
0
lol Kamara has started scoring now!
lmatthews
31/10/2006 21:17:00
0
We look to have an edge that should get us to beat the lower 10 sides in the prem. Still a bit to do on those finishing regularly in the top 6.
storagematt
31/10/2006 22:28:00
0
If we end up in a relegation battle again this season something would of dramatically happened at the Park. We are a top half team now buy our performances so far
nelson
01/11/2006 07:28:00
0
Great start! still we have lost all three games we have played against real good clubs. Bolton, Spurs & Chelski! I wouldnt mind us winning a game agains a top club....Man U maybe???...or am I just getting picky these days!? I gotta say Benji is a nessacary evil at the mo, he CANNOT miss sitters like the one in the reading game, but all our other strikers are passed their "quickest days" so his workrate is needed!..if he can start banging them in too, that would real be interesting
CharlieChimes
01/11/2006 13:39:00
0
we need to keep in perspective the fact that we have not beaten a top team so far this year, but i still see us taking a point away at pool and 7 from 12 aginst the big four at home. If you look at what else is left we should be looking at safety by the latest the second weekend in february. Then why not 8th place as a rewalistic.
russellm
02/11/2006 21:33:00
Page 1/1
  1. 1

Login to post a comment

Recent Portsmouth Articles

Stats: Pompey v Bristol Rovers

All the stats from Pompey (3) vs (1) Bristol Rovers, Fratton Park, 13/02/16 Att: 17,808

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.

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:
Fulton2%
Davies28%
Burgess0%
Webster0%
Stevens0%
Doyle0%
Close0%
Roberts0%
Evans42%
Bennett14%
Smith14%
Sub-McGurk0%
Sub-McNulty0%
Sub-Chaplin0%
ScoopDragon Publishing Entire League Network of Sites

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
1 Northampton 29 20 4 5 64 24
2 Plymouth 30 18 5 7 59 20
3 Oxford 29 15 10 4 55 21
4 Wycombe 30 14 7 9 49 7
5 Portsmouth 29 12 12 5 48 22
6 Accrington 27 14 6 7 48 15
7 Mansfield 32 13 9 10 48 6
8 Bristol Rovers 30 14 5 11 47 8
9 Leyton Orient 31 12 10 9 46 1
10 Wimbledon 29 12 9 8 45 10
11 Cambridge 31 12 8 11 44 1
12 Carlisle 27 11 9 7 42 4
13 Exeter 29 11 7 11 40 -2
14 Luton 31 10 8 13 38 -2
15 Crawley 31 11 4 16 37 -16
16 Morecambe 31 10 6 15 36 -5
17 Barnet 29 10 6 13 36 -6
18 Notts County 28 10 6 12 36 -7
19 Stevenage 32 8 10 14 34 -12
20 Newport 29 7 9 13 30 -10
21 Hartlepool 27 8 3 16 27 -18
22 Yeovil 30 5 9 16 24 -15
23 York 29 5 8 16 23 -22
24 Dag & Red 30 4 8 18 20 -24
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.Pompeytim22
4.storagematt20
5.FrattonBlue17
6.Copnor4314
7.mslorna489
8.Emsworthianblue7
9.cornypomp4
10.PFCblue4