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Chix's Chatter - Controversial or what?

Chix takes a hard stare at the criticism of Pompey's current situation and asks 'Wembley! Was it worth it?'

Life as a Pompey fan is never dull is it?

One minute we feel 'On top of the World', the next, that proverbial rug is pulled from beneath our size nines and with the assistance of gravity we come hurtling back towards Earth with the full weight of the World pressing firmly on our shoulders.

But aren't the ups & downs and the trials & tribulations of supporting your team what being a football fan is all about?

For obvious reasons the present communication embargo in operation around the corridors of Fratton Park is frustrating the majority of fans to such an extent that some feel the need to plan demonstrations or rip-up their Season Tickets. Whether we agree with these actions is somewhat irrelevant to the debate I want to present, but Pompey's eerie silence whether justified or not, continues to hang like a shadow over virtually every conversation concerning our beloved club.

Some claim that the silence is necessary while Pompey get their (financial) house in order; others see a far darker picture in which silence can only mean evil!

Over the past couple of months I have read many views on 'Pompey's Plight' and to say they differ from one person to another is an understatement, but between the lines they all seem intent on associating blame. Some supporters blame Sasha for our current predicament; others blame Jamie's Dad, some Peter Storrie or Dr SAF. I've even heard somebody blame Gordon Brown!

Personally, I do not know who (if anybody) is to blame, but having read and listened to those many discussions the common thread that hangs from them all is that (with Sasha's permission) Sandra's Husband attracted players to Fratton Park by offering 'over the odds' salaries. Salaries which with the help of 'the Credit Crunch' became unsustainable and it is that unsustainability (Dr SAF or no Dr SAF) that puts us where we are today.

However, it could be argued that the players earning those 'over the odds' salaries delivered the goods. In short space of time Pompey became a top ten Premiership club, packed with international stars and at their peak, in 90 golden Wembley minutes a year ago last May they delivered the FA Cup to the City of Portsmouth for the first time in 69 years and with it followed European football and AC Milan.

But was it all worth it? If we were to know then that within a year most of our heroes would be sold on to settle the very debts their salaries helped create would we have taken our moment of glory? Or would we have settled for a more secure future as a mid-table Fulham?

I guess my question is…

Was the 'up' of winning the FA Cup worth the 'down' of where we are today?

Join me in the debate below.

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The Journalist

Writer: Chix Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Monday August 3 2009

Time: 9:12PM

Your Comments

Come on then 'guys & gals' who is going to open the debate?
My philosophy throughout life has always been you can always pay back the money but you can't relive the experience. For that very reason i spent £200 on a Cup final ticket, and several hundred more visiting Guimaraes and Wolfsburg. I am currently paying the money back! All three experiences were well worth going to. You should never have any regrets about anything you have done. Whats done is done.
The Rabbi
Short answer: Yes! At the end of the day, FA Cup win or not, we this was always going to happen. I'm far from happy that it has, but if we had crashed out at OT instead of winning then we'd be in the position we are now for sure - it was all Jamie's Dad, Storrie and Sascha's doing, and to be honest going down the toilet was always going to hapen! So if it means we could go to Wembley and enjoy a wicked day out - then so be it!
A fair point Rabbi and one that I would more often that not hold myself, but if we knew back then what was going to happen would you (as Pompey) have sacrificed the FA Cup for stability .. not to mention your savings
Would you still hold that view if we were relegated (God forbid) next season Gino
I am really glad we had one day of glory by winning the FA Cup - I don't expect us to win the FA Cup again in my lifetime. The good thing about Harry Rednapp's signings is that essentially we have either made good money on the transfer deals or got almost all the money back on those players purchased - leaving us today in a financial predicament pretty similar to where we were when Sacha purchased the club. Think of the quality of the squad then, and what we have now, and I'd say yes, spending big to win the Cup was worth it. I used to say to myself everyday "Portsmouth for the Cup", now I saw "Portsmouth won the Cup". I can rest in peace!
I'd rather be watching my side win the FA Cup and play in Europe and then going into debt than supporting a debt free League one side who never go up or down?
The Rabbi
Hopefully not yet StuartM That day in the Sun was truly awesome I have to admit and I would have never have changed it for the World.. but don't you feel it is just a little bit tainted now? [Edited by hickin]
But with those heady days of Wembley now behind us Rabbi and even with the debts paid off aren't we not just gonna become one of those mid-table Premiership teams anyway -What's the difference?
As much as I can moan with the best of em about what is transpiring now at the club I'd tend to relate it to a life experience. Better to have loved and lost than not have loved at all. And no I'm not getting into a NOTW style tell all. In all truth I don't actually think many fans thought about anything more than the moment, while the team was building year on year with talent, and we became a force to reckon with. You must remember that we were also sold the dream with Sasha's takeover, none of us were privy to the finances. The same old lines were trotted out then if I remember correctly. But heh! I enjoyed it and now I'll moan but put up with the heartbreak. I've loved.
But with those heady days of Wembley now behind us Rabbi and even with the debts paid off aren't we not just gonna become one of those mid-table Premiership teams anyway -What's the difference?
I think that a) Wembley and b) Milan were worth it (and I didn't go to Portugal but suspect that those who went would add them to the list). We could have finished mid table for years on end and never had those two (plus) memorable matches. I can still hear the noise on that November night. It will never feel tainted. Live one day as a lion rather than a lifetime as a sheep. After all we might be headed for all the excitement of a promotion battle (please God not playoffs!)
So 'you've loved' Corny past tense? or are you still loving at any cost?
Live one day as a lion rather than a lifetime as a sheep! Great comment HSB but if we were to tumble like a Leeds would it still be worth it .. I wonder if their fans would agree about their European exploits given how far they have fallen and how hard they are struggling to get back
The FA cup was a wonderful experience and to be able to say I saw it happen is priceless. I started supported this team when we played in the old fourth division and we had money worries then we now play in the top league and still the same problem remains. The only difference is the size of the debt! I think we have been lucky to still be in business, if I ran my business the way PFC has been run I would have been in the hands of the reciever years ago. Football is, however like no other business, it runs at a loss and then a new owner injects more funds and so the cycle goes. We are starting over again, being reborn. This exercise has to be done and we needed to be brought down to earth. Pompey need to have a sensible wage structure which can be paid for from annual income and transfers have to be covered by sales or capital investment. If we get the fundamentals right the club will flourish. In conclusion, I am delighted we won the Cup but having won it, I wouldn't risk the clubs finances again to win it. Well not for another 50 years or so!!!!
L L Blue
Ah... that's where the metaphor comes a little unstuck when you apply it to PFC. I'm glad we had the good times and extactic we won the FA Cup, that's written into our history now and can't be taken away. As for any cost, who knows? If the worst comes to the worst and we are relegated I'll still be a Pompey Fan and will take it on the chin. And then start dreaming of promotion and on and on......
Sorry about the treble posts guys I seem to have suffered a technical failure this end...dam IExplorer
Fair point Corny and I'll do the same although it will be written in the history books I'm not yet convinced that the chapter is over - Will it be written by historians from their own perspective or fron that of the overall impact of the club?
No worries Corny I'm deleting them as quick as your browser can insert them ;)
Flaming browser keeps reposting. Well the two go hand in hand don't they really. The power and the glory and the end of the story.
In reply to Chix and PFC Gino - when Sasha took over, we were doomed to relegation with a crap team and no money, now we have poor team and very little money apart from TV money and dwindling gate sales - pretty similar to me apart from the fact we won the Cup! And you never know, our new owner may spend some money one of these days!
A sensible view LL Blue but one I fear we can only make having won the cup to start with .. I also like the reference to the 'dark days' too I remember back further than that when John Deacon was heralded as our saviour... He said he would take Pompey out of the (old) second division within two years.. he did straight into the third ! .. He was supposed to be rich but we ended up in debt then too .. The Circle of Life (maybe not) .. but at least the circle of football
you all have to cheer up!!! why would he buy a club just to relegate them unless he is a secret scummer?? this season is all about survival and WHEN we stay up next season things will improve. Think about what SAF said about the club at the start "i want to make portsmouth great" but he said he was in for the long game. he is not looking at 1 season, we need to be thinking about four or five seasons from now, then if there is not progres we can start to complain
Ah, Deacon I do remember, at least the chats of "Deacon Out"....
L L Blue
whilst, with the benefit of hindsight, it is now easy to see how badly we got things we cannot change the past can we, so it is my philosophy that altho regretting things is something that i do as you cannot change then why dwell too much?
would i have forgone cup success if i knew what a mess it would get us in? i do not think so - i had longed for something like that, so i wouldnt wish it away... if i could change anything it would be for the semi final to have been played somewhere other than wembley and maybe for the manager to have been someone that really, honestly and genuinely did care - then again there are not many of these left in the game!
Fair point StuartM although when he 'officially' took over it was the start of a new season (after the Great Escape) but I know what you mean. As for Dr SAF it hard to know what to believe but as long as he can get (and keep) us on an even footing I'll be well happy.. I just hope that the younger generation of fans do not expect a cup final and european football every other year... I would even go as far as to say that the fact that we are still in the Premiership means we are still (despite the finances) in one of our Golden periods..
altho saying i wouldnt have wanted it even if i knew the mess it would get us in, isnt strictly true - im not sure i would have wanted it if i knew adminsitration would have followed, but 'hopefully' this has been avoided...
I don't think anybody is sad or needs cheering up PompeyJoe We chatting about the The FA Cup and whether given Pompeys current position is was worth it.. and I don't think anybody is complaining to be honest.. What's your view ? Would you swap Wembley for stability ?
Deacon Out ! ah memories indeed .. Truth be told LL Blue I probably started half of them !
I think that is why I bring it up now Rug It sounds flipant but apart from a few player what have we actually lost (to date) we are still in the premiership and still in business so what is there really to moan about.. Although PompeyJoe hit the wwrong nail at the wrong time he does have a really valid point.. We as Pompey fans (imo) are expecting and judging far too much far too soon .. are we not ?
In an ideal world SAF would have liked to have this T/O all sorted as he can see the damage the lack of confidence is doing to us. I just have a feeling the rest of this week will be good for us.
L L Blue
It's the same question as, "would a Championship club prefer league mid table stability rather than the 'West Brom', boom and bust of premiership promotion and relegation." The answer is no. If we hadn't won the FA Cup we would just as likely have been in this position now, as it seems the ultimate fate of Portsmouth FC. I believe that if the Great Great Great Grandson of the Jewish Sarah Pressman had not left us, the damage could have been managed better and if HE had accepted the new frugal conditions of Pompey management, we would now have an ordinary but solid, conscientious team that would compete this season. There is just no comparison in the 'pulling' powers of the afore mentioned Twitcher and Paul Hart. THAT's why we are possibly doomed before a ball has been kicked - and I know which ball I would like to kick. Answers on a postcard, please.
Totally agree Chix, would rather be here and now rather than playing Shrewsbury away and signing Mick Channon!
L L Blue
Without the Cup win, we would not have witnessed AC Milan at Fratton, and hand on heart that was the best game of football I have witnessed at Fratton park since I started gong in'79-80, so with that in mind I will take all the crap we are getting now, in fact it's just a revertion to the norm really, in nearly 30 years of watching Pompey 25 must have been fighting relegation!
Hope you are right LL Blue Forgetting who is coming and who is going it'll be good to know that he is the owner .. or more to the point the debts have been cleared and Sasha has departed .. Seems harsh doesn't it ... but for the good of the club .. and all that
Mick 'The Windmill' Channon .. I've come over all weird ...
You never failed to raise a smile Et_Tu but the 'Great Great Great Grandson of the Jewish Sarah Pressman' where did you dig that one up from?.. Seriously though better a WBA than a Coventry any day of the week ... except I don't really suit stripes; )
Yeah I think if we'd have been in say Man Utd's situation, winning the leauge, top four every year and cups galore and been used to that and then blew ourselves out of the water. Well that would be different. Instead we've been struggling for years, and to have that bit of a purple patch even though it's gonna cost us is worth it.
Evening Paultsmouth When you express it like that it really makes you think doesn't it.. I think (apart from the Promotion year last year was the first time in ages I thought 'we actually might achieve something this season' and look where that got us .. I think my annual chant of '39 points for safety' is probably more relevant than I think
I've just got that philosophy of think of the worst, everything else will be a bonus now!
I think I agree Corny and selfishly I would not have missed Wembley for the world ... but hpefully the 'cost' will soon be taken care of and the 'Redknapp years' chapter can finally be closed
Funny that Paul I tossed and turned about the subject matter for this first 'live chat' and very nearly went with the idea of presenting next season as a mini league involving us and another seven clubs scrapping for survival from the off.. If anybody has high hope (today) for the forthcoming season then they must have surely been on Mars for the past six-eight weeks. I no pesimist as you know but I'd settle for 17th right now and then we can build on that.. that said I don't think we will struggle half as much as some of the other team in the Premiership this year..
In the Forum Lemmi said
Three trips to Wembley, seeing AC Milan at Fratton Park, all worth it. I'll still be there IF we go down. There's a lot of football between now and the end of the season (sorry for the commentator speak) and it's not a certainty that we'll go down but if this is the last Premiership season for a while I shall enjoy it, the highs (hopefully) and the deeply depressing lows. Lets face it, unless you support one of the top four, you have to be a masochist to watch football and the drop could happen to any of the teams from 5th down, look at Leeds and now Newcastle. I've enjoyed our time in the sun and there's no regrets. So the answer Chix, for me, is yes, it was worth it.

That seems to be the consensus Lemmi and it's been interesting to hear all the different angles and views of the Vital Pompey members .. but I still can't help wondering whether we would agree it was worth it if we were staring 'adminstration' in the face right now... Thankfully it's a thought we needn't consider for too long
In the Forum Wellyit said
Seeing us win the FA Cup was worth a few seasons of pain so long as the club survives and we are still Pompey.

I think that is the majority view Wellyit and although I maintain that it's easy to say that considering we have survived the grim reaper of adminstration it's probably a view I would share .. It's just that I (and a fair few others) take longer to heal :)
Chix's chatter, controversial or what? ...Dead right if these two polar opinions in one day are anything to go by! ;-) Deacon Out ! ah memories indeed .. Truth be told LL Blue I probably started half of them ! Chix Posted 3/8/2009 12:46 #71034 - in reply to #70999 Subject: Re: Planned Protests Quote Reply Alert Online Posts: 5264 50001001002525 Location: I get everywhere me ! I'm not in favour of a protest as such .. but if you REALLY want to show your digust with the current situation.. Just don't go to the games.. or buy a replica shirt.. or patronise the club in anyway. A few hundred supporters with banners will get shouted down by a few hundred more that don't agree with them and all that will result is tension between our own fans. Better to walk with ya feet .. If you are that serious about it .. It might make the loo queues a little shorter too.
Doppellganger...Don't know how?
Well that's it...I've made a decision! I'm not going to criticise or moan about dead beat signings or Peter Storrie until tomorrow.
Ah Mr Penton Nice of you to join the debate.. My easy answer is that voicing an opinion (via chanting) is not the same as displaying a banner or planning a sit in or pitch invasion .. But.. would I question my own response if I was sitting on the other side of the fence.. yeah I probably would, so I'm gonna have to think about how to respond (that mean have a fag) and come back with a fresh brew and address you suggestiuon of bi-polararity
Nowt meant by it except to say it made me feel better to see that someone else had contradicted themselves in the same day as I have done on here.
Right .. suitably refreshed! Penton Let's address this 'protest' issue. Firstly I think you are right to suggest that 'chanting' can be seen as a 'form of' demonstration.. In some ways it could be considered a more 'faceless' or 'less bold' demonstration, chanting with the masses can be deemed easier and far less commital, BUT .. My comment made earlier today was not suggesting people should voice their opinion it was more to do with the manner it which it is done (and more to the point in this instance what are the planned demonstrations are actually demonstrating against) I guess where I sit (today .. rather than 30 years ago) Is that I would agree with a demonstration if that demonstration is targetted and worthwhile.. Whilst I would defend everybodies right to demonstrate it doesn't necessarily follow that I have to agree with the point in question or support their methods and that is why I commented on alternative methods of action. In much the same way that I chanted back in the seventies there were those (albeit not many) that didn't agree with me (us) but at least we had a point. I guess I just see these current 'planned' demonstrations as no more than 'rebels without a cause'
Penton You know me well enough that I would never take offence.. but you also know me well enough that I just couldn't let it lie.. Funnily enough one of the reason I started this 'Chix's Chatter' series is so I can go back and re-visit what I thought at certain points in time, as opinions change as we acquire more knowledge and experience more things in life.. whoa ! better stop now I'm going into one of my Obama speeches!
Corny It's past midnight. You are free to criticise and moan about dead beat signings and Peter Storrie again - Where would you like to start ?
I would never want Pompey to go down. I wouldn't be able to watch any matches anymore on regular basis unless I go and live in England! However, although the FA Cup was a 'dream come true' I think I would prefer us to be a sort of 'Everton' fighting for a place in the CL rather than winning the Cup and now cannot buy a player. It is also to be said that we were lucky to have had West Brom and Cardiff last to play, as if it was different, we would have spent all that money in players for nothing. Reality is, we can never change the past, and the Cup was so sweet in blue and white ribbon! So, I am a bit confused.
Pompey Malta
In the Forum Philtaglia said
No. If it had been worth it, we would have some tangible improvements to point to. Not just pleasant memories of an exciting day. Don't get me wrong, that's great (for those of you who were able to go) and pretty nice for those of us who weren't, but it's not a tangible improvement in our club. If it had all led to the stadium being redeveloped, if it had led to a sustainable growth in our fanbase (you can tell it hasn't from the sheer number of people who are already preparing to stop being a fan because we're not spending millions) or if it had some other tangible, long term, sustainable benefit, I might consider it, but it hasn't.
We're no better off than we were. Without seeing the books, we could even be worse off than we were. You could argue that we wouldn't have been bought out by Dr SAF if we hadn't had that run, but several other clubs have been bought out by wealthy businessmen from the Middle East, so I don't think that necessarily follows, and it remains to be seen just how good the news that we've been bought by Dr SAF turns out to be anyway, doesn't it?
If we're to believe what we've been told - and there is a lot of evidence to suggest we should - we were within weeks of being dragged into administration. Call me an old stick in the mud, but I fail to see how risking the club not even existing was possibly a risk worth taking for such a fleeting moment of success.

Wow Philtaglia a view which goes against the grain of most others but a well put one all the same and if I'm honest thoughts which I thought more would share. A number of comments tonight have been from people who 'experienced' Wembley first hand and therefore lived (one of) their dreams whereas those that were (for whatever reason) unable to attend could only witness second hand or via TV/Radio. As for tangible improvements as a result of winning the cup I'm not entirely convinced that the financial aspect of winning the FA Cup is that great to be honest so it's maybe a little unfair to expect such big rewards from what is now a corporate advertising event as much as a football match .. that said, it is beamed around the world so we must have benefitted from the exposure in some way surely..although I'm not sure how . or maybe not because all the world seem interested in is the 'top 4'. As for your final point about risking our existence for a fleeting moment of glory .. that it the very point which inspired me to write this article.. but personally as much as I enjoyed Wembley and have read everybodies comments this evening I am still undecided whether (from a Portsmouth Football Club perspective) it was actually a good thing.. We lived a dream but that dream so very nearly killed us .. would .. should.. could .. we do it again?
Malta Thankfully (for you) you don't have to come and live in England just yet .. Malta is a wonderful country and one I have happy memories of.. anyway your confusion is natural I guess and that why I posed the question.. There is no right or wrong answer just debate and opinion. I think aspiring to be an Everton was in someway part of the plan a couple of years back but now I believe we have to set our sights much lower for the next few years at least (if not longer). We all hope (although none of us really know) what the new era will bring under Dr SAF but I just hope we move forward, no matter how slow on an even kneal (sp.?)
I'm with the Rabbi. If you don't take a chance in life, you're doomed to mediocrity. I'm certainly not resigned to it but if we get relegated in the result, so be it. It won't be the first time.
damn you know how to write a controversial article alright. personally i'm edging on the side of philtaglia tbh i unfortuantly couldn't be there and so all i have is the match on the TV and the parade etc after it and don't get me wrong their memories i'll keep with me till my dieing day but if we weren't incrediably lucky with the buy out i'm pretty certain we would have gone into administration and gone the way of leeds if not worse, ofc if that had been the case then this article wouldn't exsist lol but as i said we were lucky, stupidly lucky imo, but there ya go the buy out happened and so i guess we'll see over the next few months/years what happens to the club, if we can stabilise our selfs and stay in the prem then yea it was a good thing, hell i doubt any of us will ever see it again so why not, its got to be worth a little bit of a dip but if we get relegated then well i suppose it depends on what state we're left in and if Dr SAF would want to stay and get us back up and what players we would be left with. hmm thats not really conclusive is it... basically yea it was worth it as long as we can continue to ride our luck a bit more ;)
Hi ya Toronto how's that Tower? Too true about relegation not being the first time but it's a long haul back.. More teams gone further down than come back.. Still that ain't gonna happen is it? ..
Pompeym@ good to hear from you. I glad you see the controversy.. you wanna see what I've got planned for next week ! .. As for being lucky with the buyout don't forget the sale has yet to go through so as it stands we could still technically go into adminstration.. I just hope SAF and Sasha sort out their differences very soon and we can stabilise in the way you suggest .. just by riding our luck.. :) I'm off to bed.
Seems the colour is fading from me ...
I'm not sure why you blame Redknapp; storrie managed transfers and it has been like that since the time of Milan. Droopy could be blamed for winning the FA cup I guess, for me it's a combination of things that create a club culture, but Mr Peter -in gonna you tell a- Storries "no fire sale" still rings in my ears. We won the cup !!!
Russellm I'm not sure I blamed anybody to be honest ..all I did was present a discussion... but I think if we are honest the are all partly culpable .. But yeah we DID win the FA Cup! and whatever happens that can not be changed - PUP
I grew up with the distant history that Pompey had once won the FA cup (and then kept it 6 years because of the war . . ) I never thought it would ever happen in my lifetime. I never thought I would get tickets to any FA cup final, never mind to be there while a Pompey captain lifted the cup aloft. Then there was the amazing experience of Guimaraes and Wolfsburg - and the Milan game which was probably one of the most amazing matches and atmospheres at Fratton Park EVER - and I was there as well! So we are now paying for it and are back to where we started, we might go down, we might just be a mid table premiership club if we're lucky. But we still won the cup, and had the european games. It also shows that Pompey can be up there, and there is the potential for it to happen again one day, with the right leadership and resources at the helm, which may or may not be the current chairman. Even if we go down and take 5-6 years to come back up, it will still be my beloved Pompey, and we will still have won the cup/played Milan/and played in Europe. Was it worth it? Oh yes, it soooo was.
Nice one Tracyc It would be a foolish person who questioned your love of the club ... but 5 or 6 years??.. Let's pray that doesn't happen
Yes, lets hope not - still hoping we'll stay up at the moment!
Great comments and replies nothing I can add - off to hide in darkened room again. But to answer your question Chix - it was for the photo of you and me together at an FA Cup Final when he had collectivley support Pompey for nearly niney years!
it begs the question really were 'his' transfer dealings beneficial to the club? If you could wind back the clock now would you have sooner kept hold of Gary O, Matty Taylor, Benjii and Pedro and settled for a safe and secure mid-table premier league life or would you have sooner had Lassy, Sulley, Crouch and Defoe come and go and be in the situation we are in now? Albeit with an FA cup to our name?
You can't blame 'him' for our predicament - he was told he had the money to spend. It was Sacha who said, yes, sign him, I'll just take out another loan, its no problem.
It's been a great ride, but when we went up we knew it might not be forever....OK, we just hoped it would be a good few seasons...but its been better than that. The FA Cup in our lifetime, yep it was worth it. If we go down, at least we have a chance to win something again. So is Sasha to blame, no he made it possible and lets face it, he kept us up when Milan couldn't fund the club any more. Is it Milan, no he saved us and started the journey. Is it Storrie, not really he just works to implement the Chairman's strategy and financial plan. Is it 'him', no its been said before and it was Storrie that did the negotiating or so we are told. Is it the local council and government, well actually to some extent it is, how long have we waited for a stadium...10, 15, 20 years. Maybe had we been able to increase the size of the stadium, we might have more financial stability. Is it the banks, well to a great extent 'yes', the credit crunch has destabilized the club, perhaps they shouldn't have lent the money in the first place or panicked with the global banking crisis.
Fratton del Sol
Nice comment Dave .. you never know in five years time we could od it againa and be centuarians ;) Live that dream.. for it is a dream.. once again..
Thanks for the comments everybody a well thought (fought) out debate and what Vital Pompeyis all about .. I guess on balanace the answer to my question of was it worth it .. would be a yes.. Perhaps if the worse happens I'll ask it again next year.. but fingers crossed I won't .. Play Up Pompey

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