Some of MY answers to a summary of criticisms
Well what most people fail to do is further analyse last year. Pompey were again looking like putting in performances under Redknapp that would see us cruise to a top 10 finish with those players. Then Redknapp left, dropped a huge confidence damaging bombshell hours before the Fulham game. If it wasn't going to take half a season to recover from that, the appointment of Tony Adams (I for one thought it might have worked - but that shows my naivety and ignorance on the matter) didn't help. And in the end Paul Hart and Brian Kidd were left with a depleted squad (remember that Defoe, Muntari and Diarra had already left now) to recover a total free fall.
He did. We are where we are so let's move on.
No club can survive selling £90m worth of players in the Prem.
Well we would be probably still in the Prem with a 10 point deduction, still have sold off probably more players AND be certain for relegation to the Championship IF we hadn't sold those players - let's look on the bright side - we've already got 10 more points than if we'd plodded along like half these pundits seem to have expected us to do.
ALSO, and here is my biggest gripe, rather than what we haven't got, we should be looking at who we are left with:
GK = England's #1, an International Quality CB pairing, youth international RB and arguably one of the most exciting LB's in the league. A wealth of international and Prem experience and depth in CM... granted RM is still a concern for me and one of England's seriously promising talents on the left (the fact it's only a loan until Jan suggests serious strengthen come then - or at least the possibility of it) - AND up front a strike force that has just as much chance of keeping us up as any in the likely bottom 10.
The players we have replaced these sales with are not the same quality
True, but compare our transfer dealings with any of Birmingham, Hull, Burnley, Wolves, Wigan, Bolton, Blackburn... I don't see any of them pulling up trees and the majority have in my opinion weaker and shallower squads. At least three of those teams will have over the course of 38 games accrued less points than us.
We no longer want to be an Aston Villa or Everton or Spurs... or even a Fulham or West Ham. We want to be a Stoke or Hull or Wigan and be somewhere below mid table and above relegation. In my opinion we've actually attracted players these latter clubs would be jealous of. I really don't see how being practically in the same position as most of the clubs coming up (there are three of them) in terms of having to build a new squad makes us automatic to go down. We're still building from a firmer base.
All the problems with the takeover have left Portsmouth a club in turmoil
I think this is history now - and yet I don't see anyone coming out and saying that now the new owner is in place, the books are balanced and now being a club with one of the smallest debts in the league that we are on course for an improved season?
Regardless of turmoil, basic financial necessity required those players to be sold, turmoil or not. Our season starts here - and lets face it - you could say that wiped 4 games off our season - but two of them we'd have been lucky to get anything from anyway.
Pompey are going to do a Newcastle
In short, wearing a Pompey shirt to a home game does not make you Mike Ashley or your club Newcastle. We haven't appointed our coach as manager (that was last season - remember?) or indeed unsettled the management with a Dennis Wise style Director of Football. We haven't spent the sort of £m's on players - and even when we did, they were decent enough to win the FA Cup. We've been able to ship them out and bring in a strong survival focussed squad at the start of the season - something Newcastle NEVER did.
Pompey came close to administration
Paper's love shades of grey - in business it just ain't so. You either DO or you DON'T. We DIDN'T. With this type of thing it is win or lose... there is no draw. We won. We're still in the division and we've bought more players than sold AND they're players here to play for Hart and Pompey, not players that WERE here to play for Redknapp and now miss the old boy.
In short, having been around all the other relegation-avoidance hopefuls and seen the response to their transfer windows I can summarise the following:
1. There are very few players in any of the clubs around us I would swap for ours.
2. None of the clubs had "good" transfer windows and can only expect to be as good or worse than last year (I especially put Hull, Brum and Wolves in that category)
3. Pompey fans seem in general happier with the signings we've made than most other fans of theirs.
4. All of this other clubs do not have the quality nucleus of players or strength and depth through the middle of the park that Pompey do.
In short, once this new team gels my expectation is for us to be disappointed in missing out on a top10 finish (possibly even with a disallowed goal denying a uefa spot) at the end of the season. It will be an inexcusable failure for this bunch and PH to take us down, (I know its a cliché) but they ARE too good to go down.
Written by jim4pompey.
The views within this article are the views of the individual who wrote and submitted this piece, sometimes solely theirs. They are not necessarily shared by the Vital Pompey Site Journalists.