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Pompey season review - summer 2006

Pompey season review - summer 2006

Pompey had pulled off a miraculous escape to avoid relegation at the end of the 2005/06 season, so after breathing sighs of relief - but let us not forget we more than deserved this escape, it was not a lucky one - the nations attentions turned to the world cup finals.

As always England entered as 'one of the favourites,' but don't we always? Yet we always falter! This time though it would be different they told us - again.

Under the expert tutelage of Sven Goran Eriksson - and his would be successor Steve McClaren - England's 'golden generation' would deliver and the world cup would come home, being made all the sweeter by being won on German soil.

Needless to say England flattered to deceive, in what was ultimately a poor world cup finals on the whole. As always we crashed out on penalties and again to Portugal, in no small part due to United's number one 'winker' Ronaldo.

Alas we could now turn full attention to what promised to be a high activity summer with our transfer record being broken repeatedly - or so we thought.

Pompey were linked to anyone who could play football, Sulley Muntari - fresh from a fine showing from the world cup's surprise package Ghana - was heavily linked along with his Ghanaian international captain Stephan Appiah, neither arrived, well Muntari did 12 months later for a club record £7million!

Gareth Barry, Jermain Defoe, Sol Campbell, Stilian Petrov, Yakubu, Juan Vargas, Nicolas Anelka, Manuel Fernandes were some of the names banded about, many of whom involved big money moves, with so many said to have only needed minor details sorted out - some came off, many did not.

Players were leaving, or being released including - and most unfortunately in my view - Brian Priske and John Viafara. I sill feel these fellas suffered the 'we are not 'arry's boys' treatment. Others, including some of Redknapp's own signings, but many of Alain Perrin's 'flops' were either send packing, did not have contracts renewed or the options of signing them after loans were not taken up.

The first Pompey signing of the summer would be one of a number of current, or former England internationals, this man being Tony Adams. The legendary former Arsenal defender - and quite possible one of the greatest defenders this country has ever produced - joined the Pompey coaching team as Harry Redknapp's number 2 - our defence has not looked back since!

A second England international, Glen Johnson, became the first playing member of the side to arrive. A loan move secured his services from Chelsea for a year.

One real surprise arrival saw free agent David Thompson join the club. The former England international had been released by Wigan. Berlin Ndebe-Nlome, a player we had on trial during pre-season, cunningly disguised as 'Berlin' was also offered a contract too.

With the season rapidly approaching the much anticipated deals we had been hoping for were not arriving, but with the season upon us Redknapp - with much help from Adams - pulled off the major coup of signing Sol Campbell who had left Arsenal to seek a 'new challenge'. And a bottle of water was all it took! If only we had known that sooner, all the 'will he, won't he, surely he won't, he will you know, nope he won't after all,' would not have been needed.

Kanu was plucked from the park, where he had been 'keeping himself fit running - or as is more likely 'jogging' - around it,' arriving as another free agent signing after his release by relegated West Brom. The first 'real money' spent saw David James arrive from City the following day for £1million; this was not well received by Dean Kiely!

Maybe we had not signed the players we had expected for the monies spoken about, but who could have really complained at what we got! We signed quality proven international standard players and expectation for the coming season rose as we prepared for Blackburn's visit to Fratton on the opening day.


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

Date:Thursday June 14 2007
Time: 3:35PM


mate all due respect etc aren't you supposed to do the previous season review before the next season's fixture list comes out.
14/06/2007 18:53:00
LoL :-) every one's a critic
14/06/2007 18:53:00
Still, a nice read...just shows how far we have come! we really did have some bad players! no longer!!!! :):):)
14/06/2007 18:55:00
sorry: 'stand still'.
14/06/2007 20:32:00
Must improve just to stand sell. Though we can't compete Man Utd win the league & still spend £50m+. In our own way so must we. It is good to look back, makes us bl00dy appreciate what we have now.
14/06/2007 20:32:00
russellm, the thing you have to take into account tho mate is i only took over the site a couple of weeks back didn't i - so i did not even have the thought of doing a season review until then and even then i have to try and find time to do these things... i am not taking it personally at all, but if people would rather i did not review anymore months i will leave it at this, as i would rather do things that people want to see than just do things i want to do...
15/06/2007 00:59:00
Good stuff, PR, you forget the detail over the months - it's good to review and it allows us to see how far (in this case) or how little things have changed.
15/06/2007 09:01:00
I'm hard pressed to think of better signings we could have made than David James and Sol Campbell. They spent the season being fantastic and with a different England manager both may have got a recall. Glenn Johnson was another big profile signing which really put Pompey on the map. He faded through the season and was also patchy (I too was sorry to see Priske go - thought he was a good player) but if nothing else helped raise our profile and you could argue, we never looked back!
15/06/2007 09:18:00
thanks Et_tu_Pompeii... have you given any thought to my suggestion put to you as a result of your thoughts on andy o'brien - i think it was in the pompey in the tabliods (10) article?
15/06/2007 10:09:00
if i am honest jamo was not the keeper i had in mind but not a day goes by that i am not thankful for the fact we signed him - it just goes to show that with some players previous reputations are all you see until you see them week in week out... adams arriving was the real turning point tho i think, our defence transformed - coincidence? nope! thanks to him we also got sol, with 'arry's powers of persuation of course... i was excited when we signed johnson, but i thought as the season went on his commitment became less and less, almost as if he knew he would play so did not need to give it as much effort as he once did? priske was horrible when he first arrived but he turned it round and looked a pretty useful player in the end didn't he, the fella got a raw deal but that's life i suppose...
15/06/2007 10:12:00
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