Portsmouth - Let the Pompey battle commence
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Let the Pompey battle commence

Sylvain Distin's arrival appeared to put pressure on Linvoy Primus' place in the Pompey defence alongside Sol Campbell - but he won't have it all his own way.

David James has warned him in The News with what he said that he would face a fight from Primus 'it's an interesting one with Sylvain because he's going to find it hard to get into the team.

'All respect to him as a footballer. I like him as a player and had a good experience with him at City.

'But defensively we were very, very strong last year and Linvoy was a massive part of that.

'Linvoy had a great season and because of that Sylvain will need to justify his place - it's going to be difficult for him.

'I didn't know much about Linvoy when I came here, but that's not surprising. I don't have the greatest knowledge of footballers, it has to be said.

'He's really impressed me, though. He had a tremendous season'.

Primus was brilliant last season and has probably been our most consistent performer in recent years, so my first thoughts when hearing of Distin's arrival where he would be put under immense pressure and could lose out. Harry Redknapp's recent comments praising Distin and how important he will be for us this season seemed to back this up.

With Campbell, Distin and Primus all being 30, or thereabouts with Campbell and Primus nearer their mid 30's none are spring chickens - but all are as fit as anyone - so with the rigours of the game as it is rotation is something that will most probably be needed.

If we thought our central defence looked strong last season, Distin's arrival along with other players we could use in this area make us look almost rock solid.

My thinking is Distin will start as the preferred partner for Campbell, but I just hope Primus gets a fair crack of the whip as my belief last season was there were very few defenders who performed better than he did over the course of 2006/07 - English or otherwise, Pompey or not.

I would start with Campbell and Primus, but I am a very big fan of Optimus Primus and a sentimental old fool too!


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The Journalist

Writer: pompeyrug Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday July 6 2007

Time: 9:33AM

Your Comments (oldest first)

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I think squad rotation is an accepted part of top flight football. They all no there no guarantees. Competition is healthy.
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06/07/2007 10:09:00

age=experience, a must have for a defender, ita an old adage, but the first two yards are in your head
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06/07/2007 10:19:00

I think Primus was awesome for you guys last season, wouldn't like to see the guy sitting on the bench for long spells next season.
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06/07/2007 10:24:00

Good to see big Linvoy getting some recognition before the kickoff of the season. It never ceases to amaze me how he gets dropped at the start of the season and then turns in some fantastic performances to make the place his own when the chance arrives. The key thing for me is that he already has an excellent understanding with Sol - Sylvain is an excellent player, but that understanding may take a while to develop.
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06/07/2007 10:26:00

Linvoy won't be sat on the bench much at all. he's far too good. Its good to know we have cover in case of injuries as well as perfromance. No more Harry excuses of 'down to the bare bones'. I can see HR playing all three away from home if last years defensive away perfromances are anything to go by.
The Rabbi
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06/07/2007 10:40:00

Linvoy will be in the team again, maybe at right back with Lauren playing in front of him. It will just be better to have a bigger selection of players for Harry to pick from, as it will be inevitable that we will be down to the 'bare bones' by January and there is the African Cup of Nations in January to think about.
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06/07/2007 10:50:00

Good point the Rabbi makes. Play 3-5-2 away from home giving us stability and two up front which everyone is screaming for. Mind you who will be the two up front??
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06/07/2007 12:33:00

Meh, Arry's more likely to play with his favoured (and somewhat sickening) one up front approach away from home.
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06/07/2007 12:58:00

You will probably be right Tantona, we will go away again to try and get a draw when we should have a go at some of the other teams in the division. Go down with a fight rather than the way we were at Blackburn and Chelsea in particular.
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06/07/2007 13:14:00

well,i am hoping that with our greater depth and quality, particualy in midfield, Harry will let us play more attacking football away from home. But then, that is mere hope...
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06/07/2007 13:29:00

i tend to agree fellas, i could see optimus, sol and distin all playing in away games - but only if we get genuine goalscoring strkers... when we get these - i saw when now, not if! - we will have an attacking goal threat so i think - or is this hope? - 'arry will have a go on the road... optimus certainly could fill in at right back and probably will wont he Owenspompey, agreed, altho distin can also play at left back if needed cant he. these points make the possibility of all 3 playing in away games more probably?
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06/07/2007 13:35:00

more probable even...
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06/07/2007 13:36:00

Lauren always looks awkward at left back and probabaly suffers because of his versatility. I hope Harry leaves him playing on the right side, and picks a more natural left sided player to keep the team balanced. But lets go away from home and have a go at teams this year
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06/07/2007 19:07:00

Amen to that Owenspompey, last year was mostly depressing
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06/07/2007 19:13:00

wont Linvoy will miss preseason and the first two or three games due to an operation, if so it wont be much of a battle at all.
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06/07/2007 19:13:00

And how many times did we pick up points with the one up front tactics 'Arry, eh? Eh?? Well....I remember a fighting point at Liverpool......
Report Abuse
07/07/2007 09:25:00

how many games did we take a lead only to blow it through sitting back
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07/07/2007 13:10:00

anyway my original point was getting back to the article title i think Dystin will be first choice sart for the first few weeks, this worries me a bit as i said when we first signed him each time i have watched him play he has made a cock up
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07/07/2007 13:16:00

i was not up for signing hijm for 3m odd last summer but is a very good addition to the squad for free... he does not make as many errors as he used to but as someone else has said we may lose the understanding at hte back we had between optimus and sol last season? they would still be my preferred pairing tbh...
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07/07/2007 16:44:00


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