Portsmouth - Pompey keep up 100% record
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Arsenal 4 - Pompey 1

Ashburton Grove



Pompey keep up 100% record

Well a hammering was predicted, a hammering was dealt out, but bizarrely enough this was Pompey's best display of the season.

Paul Hart stunned everyone by going with Kanu up front, flanked by Utaka and Piquionne, Vanden Borre slipped to the bench, Diop was at home nursing his hamstring.

The game started ok for Pompey, Arsenal were predictably enjoying the lions share of possesion, Wilson and Belhadj making timely interceptions early on, with Piquionne squirting in a shot at the other end.
On 18 minutes the inevitable happened, Eduardo ghosted past Wilson and squared for Diaby who smashed home.
Pompey suddenly looked all at sea, and Diaby got another straight after, a quick counter and Eboue rolled another over to Diaby who had the easy task of tapping home. Almost straight away again and it should of been 3, Arshavin crossing right across goal with no contact, then Fabregas spurning an opportunity to shoot.
James denied Van Persie in quick succession, and all of a sudden Pompey were back in it with their first goal of the season.
Belhadj lofted one in and Kaboul rose above a flat-footed Almunia to nod home, Pompey had a lifeline.
On half-time James excelled again, blocking out Van Persie once more in a one man mission to deny the Dutchman.

Second half and Pompey's tormentor-in-chief Fabregas was off, and so should of been Gallas, Utaka completely out stripped him and Gallas clipped him, but predictably away from home the ref waved play on and the linesman looked to the skies is if nothing had happened, definite free-kick and last man should of walked.
Gallas then took his outrageous luck to new levels, within a couple of minutes he found himself at the other end, the ball hit his foot richocheted up to his face and in off the post, I'm sure Paul Hart could be heard to say 'that Frenchman should not be on the pitch'
3-1 it was and Pompey were deflated, Piquionne got away from Clichy but dithered and had the ball whipped off of his foot when he should really of scored.
70 minutes and Ramsey got another, he found himself goalside when Pompey appealed for offside, he cooly slotted past a distraught James.
A few minutes later and the sight all Pompey fans dreaded, David James went off with a muscle injury and Begovic replaced him, hopefully it is no more than a recurrence of his injury against Rangers. Utaka had another good chance to pull Pompey closer, but sliced wide when he should of very least tested Almunia.

Star Player

Mokoena is showing the right attitude and of our central 3 was the only to really earn his wages, but Belhadj takes it for having displayed the most attacking threat.

Player Ratings


Let in 4 but it could of been so much worse, hopefully not seriously injured


Done some good things but Eduardo had the upper hand on him, seems to prefer the middle.


One slip let in Diaby but Van persie couldn't punish him further.


Pompey's top scorer!


Great early interception and Pompey's most creative outlet


Seems to play much better away from home, should of scored but at least looked lively for periods.


Given a free role, should of been given a free transfer, he is going next summer but hardly putting himself in the shop window, can Pompey afford to carry a player more interested in not injuring himself than football?


Best of the midfield 3 by a mile, puts in a shift and can tackle




Holds the ball well, got an hour at his old club and didn't let himself down


Puts in the effort of Benjani, trouble is he looks like he might take as long to score as well.

The Journalist

Writer: paultsmouth Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Saturday August 22 2009

Time: 5:58PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
We can blame our luck, but 4 against sums it up, but all round a better display, get the cheque book out Storrie and we may be able to build on something
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 18:00:00

Not a chance of staying up even if Storrie could find 100M in his piggy bank. Time for Hart to move on.
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 18:27:00

Well yeah, and it could have been a lot more but heh! On the radio it at least sounded like we were having a go, unlike our more defensive displays against two lesser clubs than Arsenal. We do need some more quality though and quick. Not only that, we need the squad to all stay fit. A few injuries to key players and we're totally screwed.
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 18:30:00

Gallas should have been off at 2-1, not saying it would definately have changed the result but we were playing well at that point and he is their best defender. We definately need a strike partner for freddy and cover in defence. Hopefully this will happen next week. PUP
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 18:33:00

the problem is though moley, we had rode our luck to still be in the game at 2-1. we should have been long gone! We can't have too many complaints about the result, but we should probably still be worried about our predicament.
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 18:48:00

So we are bottom of the Prem .. come on fellas it is where we expected to be so why be downhearted ;) Yes Utaka looked ok (Gallas should have gone) Belhadj had a good game and Freddy look promising (on the wing !) .. It should have been 10 by half time we know that but it wasn't (thanks mainly to James) It was by far our best performance and we should go 442 everytime we did look a threat at times .. It'll come ... Everton got spanked by 6 remember in their own back yard.. So did you really expect anything more .. Heads up and let's bring on Man City .. maybe a few more players .. but maybe not... Chin up !
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 19:18:00

I was dreading this expecting a complete mullering but in the end I was happy with the spirited performance we put in. But furious about the decision. It was clear cut, we should have had a chance to level with a free kick in a dangerous area, and should have got to play a 10-man Arsenal. Its enough to be playing Arsenal, we shouldn't have to accept the officials against us as well, its a complete disgrace. If it had gone the other way around, everyone would be full of it and there would have been hell to pay, but because its us, it will be glossed over. Apart from that I'm obviously concerned about the injuries to Marc Wilson and Jamo. (although if Jamo's got a slight injury it might stop twitchy signing him?)
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 19:25:00

What you wrote about Niko is true. His perfomance today was nothing. He was like a f*u*c*k*i*n*g turist in London, but he can just walk around center becouse coach told him that.... he was very lazy today.
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 20:35:00

I just cant believe your blogs are pathetically clinging onto a refereeing decision that didnt go your way. ridiculous! arsenal took the ***** out of you for 90 minutes but oh no..... gallas challenging your player and the decision not going your way way is what turned the game.... you must be f'ing insane!! other than krancjar, your team is bxxxxxx..... the longer you blame referees for poor results the longer you'll be *****e. Believe> p.s your support was absolutely rubbish... one cowbell and a drum and you think youre the f'ing proms
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 20:53:00

Krancjar was not at all in the game today. Gunners sure showed some class and ripped us apart. Should of been more and the gulf between the 2 sides was evident. Pompey however created some chances and we should take the positive from that. Freddy P once again ran his socks off. Kanu showed a few of the ole touches,Belhadj was not affraid to put himself in places where others were not. I personally felt Utaka once again had the openings but didn't make the most of them. Dr and Storrie sitting together, hope they were discussing where we need to bring in players. If not then its gonna be a scrap to stay in the premiership
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 21:40:00

Just seen highlights on Irish television. Ronnie Whelan claims Utaka tripped himself up and would have been injustice to send Gallas off. Don't agree myself but bet MotD will say the same. Had absolutely no expectation today and more confident after 15 minutes. Niko's agent wont be getting a call from Wenger anyway. Really getting tired of Niko's attitude, he must have a deal agreed at end of season. We need to sign players quick or Derby are going to lose all of their records.
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 22:19:00

go home u polish imagrant...
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 22:45:00

oh dear hussler.... cant construct a proper sentence together so you have to resort to mindless racism... ahhhh... just because your team is crap... oh dear
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 22:57:00

p.s. imagrant is spelt immigrant *****
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 22:59:00

If you're going to correct our spellings, please correct all our "should of", "could of" and "would of" mistakes as well, they drive me nuts :P By the way, you have five expletives in two paragraphs, so you're not exactly the poster boy for eloquence yourself ;) Now that we've (hopefully) got the ad hominem attacks out of the way on both sides, Gallas clearly didn't touch Utaka. Utaka, up to his usual high standards, tripped over his own feet. The ref got it bang on. But if you think we were rubbish today, you're dead wrong. We were even worse than that in our first two games. :P
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 23:19:00

Sorry chaps, was never a sending off now was it? Utaka tripped himself up, blatant from the replay. Anyhow wish you all the best for the season, apart from the return fixture obviously :)
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22/08/2009 23:19:00

Yes Polski we were woeful but we knew that and so did your lot before a ball had even been kicked. Unfortunately we're lacking any fight or drive at the moment because we've got too many old faces (Kranjcar, Distin) who are looking at the exit door. We should cash in and invest some money on some new, hungry blood. 5m for Distin? Bite their hands off and find some strong French defender in a similar mould. Niko's contract is up at the end of the season and he is playing woefully - certainly not the kind of player you need in a fight. Cash in, 4.5m - Gary O'Neil. Get us a proper leader and some fight. Give us something to shout about.
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 23:29:00

Will have to field the youth team on Tuesday if no sign of takeover by then. Kranjcar should be made play after that performance. He will probably have a blinder on Sunday with the Sky cameras there and one day before the window closes.
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 23:33:00

I haven't been getting on the back of Hart but why he persists with Mullins when he has the intelligent and very able Basinas on the bench, is a mystery to me. He's the Greek captain for christs sake. Also Wilson is talented and will be a solid player but he needs more experience, he's been thrown right in the cauldron at the moment. Once he has reached full fitness, Vanden Borre should replace him.
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 23:35:00

I've always been a great Niko fan but there's no way we should be letting him go for nothing when he isn't going to do it for us this season. He's certainly the wrong kind of player for a fight as he neither has the desire or the pace. 4.5m and I don't care if the Spuds, Scum or Stoke stump up the cash.
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 23:38:00

Very adventerous play today from Hart, playing a 442 formation against the best side in the premier league! It raises questions, but did pay off, as we played some nice touches. Utaka and Piqiuonne were great, so was Kaboul and Belhadj. James was outstanding, but our midfield, as always, looked weak.
Pompey Malta
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 23:41:00

Who the **** are you polski??? Why don't you go and fetch a cock!
Pompey Malta
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22/08/2009 23:42:00

polski14 - there is a very good reason why we are clinging on to a refereing decision that didn't go our way. it's becuase it's the only thing we have to cling on too. We arn't a massive club like arsenal. Recently, on a scale of 0-100 for financial stability, arsenal were rated 98. pompey were rated 2. we have useless players who can't be bothered, and (one) good players who'd rather play for spurs (god forbid!). What do you EXPECT us to cling on too? do you EXPECT us to bow down to your brilliance, and accept we are a lost cause? becuase if you do, you are more naiive than my two year old brother. Oh, and if you think OUR support was rubbish, have you ever been to the emirates stadium? those arsenal fans suck.
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 23:47:00

utaka trips himself up..we were poor at the back..livrely up front when we had a chance..over all we were poor
plymouth graham
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22/08/2009 23:51:00

Back to the game, and I havn't seen the highlights, only listend to the quay, and left that early to avoid the traffic. my interpretation of that, was that we played well, utaka and piq both got forward effectivly to help kanu, who himself played some nice touches. Mokoena did well, and won a silver meddle today... unfortunatly that was for long jump, and I'm not so sure how he did on the football pitch. but the other two in midfield - by the sound of things - needednt have bothered to turn up. Our defence sounded solid... or as solid as a defence that conceeded four goals can sound - whilst the injury to jamo ws worrying (but begovic did well when he came on).
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 23:51:00

oh, and finaly, i can't wait untill monday next week. when the season really starts. all this is just a very long, slightly confused pre-season. right?
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 23:53:00

Agree Pompey Malta and McCann from Bolton is not going to improve the situation. There have to be players we can loan from other PL clubs.
Report Abuse
22/08/2009 23:55:00

literally just walked through my door, another long day but another day i enjoyed - despite defeat! it might sound odd, but yep it could have been worse, but it could also have been better...obviously not seen any replays but, as much as utaka went down 'fairly' easily being in line with it i am amazed that we did not even get a free kick, which would have meant a red card for gallas and still 2-1 against 10-men, then what does he do...
arsenal are a different class but i was 'encouraged' by that showing, altho i thik some need to look at themselves and ask how 'committed' are they, this is something that hart keep banging on about, as do we, but i am not convinced that kranjcar's 'heart' is in it anymore so i say cash in on him...
Report Abuse
23/08/2009 00:09:00

come on hussler, there is no need for that mate...
but, polski14 - and before i start i want to make it clear that i like arsenal and have alot of time for them - whilst admitedly i do not think the pompey fans were at our best today who were the ones that had to dish out 'free scarves' to their fans today to try and 'get them going...'
60,000+ in their today, the vast majority clearly arsenal, but how quiet were you lot? on the whole... those around us seemed more intent on winding up the pompey fans than supporting their own side!
Report Abuse
23/08/2009 00:16:00

polski14 we know we're rubbish, we know we're up against it, we've just come through one tough season when all the decisions seemed to go against us, and we know the chances are we're going to go down. But despite what you say we are stil behind our team. When you've experience that, you can criticise us. In the meantime if you're going to visit our site then keep a civil tongue in your head.
Report Abuse
23/08/2009 09:27:00

And another thing, I've experienced this before from Arsenal fans - the unsporting and ungraciousness in victory. Not in defeat, in victory. They've done it before, they beat us, then they have to go on and on having a go. Get over yourselves!
Report Abuse
23/08/2009 09:30:00

(is he actually an arsenal fan, I don't think he commented much on the arsenal site... if at all?)
Report Abuse
23/08/2009 10:08:00

lol leave the little troll alone and he'll go away, hes just trying to get a reaction, prolly doesn't even support arsenal (if anything he'll support reading right?.. ;D)
Report Abuse
23/08/2009 12:05:00

Never seen polski on our site before guys, likes a good swear though doesn't he? Admire him for that, but he needs to work on his anger issues lol.
Report Abuse
23/08/2009 13:07:00

Ok, so it was expected, but it is still a bit of a dish of ointment. Never mind, onwards and upwards...dare I say?
Report Abuse
23/08/2009 15:07:00

Quite right Pennymoon, although I doubt there will be any upwards without a couple of new players.
Report Abuse
23/08/2009 15:14:00

just you wait... that formation looked quite promising... although maybe kranjcar needs a bit of a kick start, but amazingly utaka did something!
Report Abuse
23/08/2009 15:31:00


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