Date:Sunday October 13 2013
Before most away games you would tear the hand off anyone offering you a point. That could be said of yesterday`s Dockyard derby with Plymouth Argyle at the football outpost of Home Park but after watching the game live on Sky I feel the result certainly hides the reality of 90 minutes Pompey dominated throughout and should have claimed a comfortable away triumph.
The satellite sports channel for some reason gave the man of the match to Argyle goalscorer Conor Hourihane when there was only one contender in my mind and the packed Eastney pub I watched it in and that was Patrick Agyemang!! Big Pat made run after run at the home defence showing great control and strength, he was head and shoulders above the rest. Yes he did run up a few blind alleys and slightly overhit three brilliantly thought out passes but it was a masterclass on how to lead an attack and showed the rest of the division what to expect when they come up against Pompey.
Alongside Pat, John the Marquis of Millwall toiled valiantly but could not match his partner. It showed be that Pompey are missing the injured David Connolly who is the perfect foil for the big man and can put away the chances created. All that was needed was that finish to claim the two extra point and begin the advance up the table that Pompey`s football deserves.
Despite that dominance you were always nervous that the defensive frailties would return and Pompey would shoot themselves in the foot in the closing minutes again! But the defence held firm and keeper Trevor Carson has certainly added stability in that area.
It did not start too well though as Yassin Moutaouakil in trying to chest a cross down to his keeper somehow allowed the ball to bounce off his chin and it dropped for Hourihane to thump home from seven yards to put the home side ahead. Pompey bounced back quickly though and after keeper Luke McCormick was forced into an acrobatic save by Marquis, Moutaouakil helped set up Jed Wallace who finished calmly.
All square at half time and those around me who had managed to get 8/1 on Pompey when they were trailing were confident of a killing but sadly it was not to be.
Still three unbeaten since the Kit Kat Crescent massacre gives the blues something to build on with two home games to come in the next ten days.
5 year history slots
A member of the Toast team was watching an obscure cable channel the other night and caught a programme highlighting the idea about dividing history up into five year chunks to make learning easier. We thought how stupid but still insisted on converting Pompey`s recent past into that method and it looks like this
1968 - Finish fifth in Division Two after leading for a large part of season.
1973 - John Deacon splashes the cash but it all goes wrong and Pompey are heading for obscurity.
1978 - Pompey are now in the Fourth Division after another relegation - worst season ever even Plymouth were cheered when winning 5-1 at Fratton.
1983 - Division 3 champions as Alan Biley scores the winner at Plymouth - two promotions in three seasons!
1988 - relegation from Division One after just one season back at the top table. Still we won at the Dell - farewell to John Deacon.
1993 - Pompey lose play off semi-final to Leicester City. Should have won automatic promotion to the new Premier League.
1998 - drifting aimlessly. Alan Ball back in charge and the only cup game won in the year is against Plymouth.
2003 - Pompey reach the promised land of the Premier League and all is rosy.
2008 - Wembley and the FA Cup is one. Only one game at Fratton Park in the run beating Plymouth 2-1. A European tour is underway and AC Milan come to town.
2013 - Pompey are back in Division Four except it is now called League Two!! The fans now own the club and our story end at Plymouth.
Well does it work Toasters? Or do we need to fill it a few more details?
Sadly following results of some recent x rays I have to announce that I have been forced to retire! Now that is not necessarily good news for Toast fans as I have been diagnosed as suffering from Osteoarthritis in the right foot which means my playing career is over.
So if you see me struggling up the road, give me a lift!!
England for the English
So where do you stand on the argument brewing around ManUre`s young midfield star Adnan Januzaj, the 18-year-old is eligible for Belgium, Albania, Serbia and Turkey.
All week ex smoker Jack Wilshere and England`s South African cricket star Kevin Pietersen have been embroiled in 'debating` the subject over who and how players should qualify to play for England. Jack of course wants to restrict the competition he is up against whereas KP plays a different sport that is only played at international level by ten nations.
My belief is that you play for the country of your birth full stop not one where your mother went on holiday once! Players can move freely from club to club but not your country.
That was something that inter League games were designed for back in the eighteenth century with on one occasion Denis Law playing for the Italian League against the Scottish League back in 1961. What fun those games would be nowadays.
Happy birthday to storagematt who is xx today. He has given enough clues over the years but I can`t count!!
Also many congratulations to sneakay who got married Jo last week. They have been away but whatever Chris has been a regular over the years and we offer our best wishes for the future.
Lastly a newer member khodgkins wrote in the form last week part one of his own Pompey autobiography. Let`s have a look - well the Mail are serialising a certain ex-managers book!
'Part 1 The Start
In 1977 I was 14 and to be quite honest Pompey meant very little to me, I was into Heavy Rock and guitars, Black Sabbath and Thin Lizzy to be more precise.
Don`t get me wrong I did enjoy football, but mainly international football in the guise of England, my favourite player was Steve Coppell, then on an occasion at school someone asked me who I actually supported the real answer should have been no one, but because being just a kid I thought well my favourite player is Steve Coppell so it must be for Manchester United, so my early early years as a part time football fan was spent liking United. That liking was all about to change!
Back then I lived in Livingstone Road Southsea and a neighbour of ours Peter Tregust (or something like that) convinced me to go to Fratton Park with him and as I was always up for trying something new, which in the case of live football it was just that, although saying that my Dad did take me to see Pompey vs Arsenal when I was seven, but cannot really counted as all I remember was being very bored.
Anyway back to 1977 to be honest I cannot for the life of me remember who the team was that Pompey were playing, it was early in the season and the sun was shining it could well have been Colchester United, which would please my mate Simon who is a massive U`s fan, I remember very little of the match apart from we 'stood' in the North stand lower and I remember enjoying the day and thinking I like this and I will come again and from that day I was hooked! for the rest of that season and strangely enough even though Pompey were pretty rubbish and the crowds not very big the draw of live sport really appealed to me and just kept going. As everyone knows Pompey were relegated, but that did not change me I kept going the next season in Division four.
Chix suggested Chesterfield 3-0 (Kemp 2 and Stokes) and Colchester were the next visitors to Fratton Park but on a Tuesday night in a goalless draw
Strange season gates hardly fluctuated between 9,000 and 11,000 possibly the worst season I have seen as a Pompey fan - went to every home game and a few away just to prove how mad I have always been!!
A footnote though on the first chapter, even seven years old how could you have been bored at the Arsenal game in 1971?? 40,000 crowd end to end stuff and the atmosphere! Plus Trebs equaliser in the last minute - great stuff but very wet day though. Watch it on Youtube.
Date:Sunday October 13 2013
Decision time (Thursday December 5 2013)
On this day in history...5th December (Thursday December 5 2013)
The month ahead...December (Wednesday December 4 2013)
Pompey vs Wycombe (Wednesday December 4 2013)
Pompey predictions league update #18 (Wednesday December 4 2013)
On this day in history...4th December (Wednesday December 4 2013)
The month that was... (Tuesday December 3 2013)
On this day in history...3rd December (Tuesday December 3 2013)
Edinburgh approach rejected (Monday December 2 2013)
On this day in history...2nd December (Monday December 2 2013)
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