Vital Football

My Pompey Angst

My Pompey Angst
Over the last 12 months or so I have been 24x7 pouring over internet posts, phone ins, newspaper articles et. al in order to glean some good news, insight, 'light at end of tunnels' etc. regarding our dear old football club.

Yes, I am a half full glass person, eternal optimist; 'happy clapper' if you like. However, this latest blow regarding the transfer embargo has left me absolutely gutted.

I've given the new ownership every chance to redeem themselves but either Mark Jacob is the eternal optimist or he doesn't know what he's talking about. 'The embargo will be lifted imminently'? You've got to be kidding.

The problem is that every time I hear a 'snippet' like this, it cheers me up only to be let down all over again. Will somebody please do something, if it's only pack it in and walk away.

I went to my first game at F.P. in 1951 and, sad old b.. that I am, devoted my life to the support of this once grand old Club. I've been all over the country with them, relegations, promotions, blood sweat and tears and in all 4 Divisions but it was always fun and mostly full of excitement. However, it just ain't fun anymore and certainly rarely exciting. (I must, nevertheless, confess to jumping out of the settee last week when Mokoena, of all people, scored that last minute winner!).

I've pondered long over all this and have reluctantly come to the conclusion that we just can't hack it with the big boys. This is not down just to the incompetence of recent ownerships but has ben building up ever since the old Championship days of the fifties.

I don't know whether it's in the psyche of the Portsea islanders, local ownership or what but there has always been a reluctance to move with the times, phrases such as 'it will do us good to go down for a while', 'what do we want a new stadium for, we're alright where we are', 'corporates? They're a flippin' nuisance', etc., etc.

I may be wrong but we must be the only major league club to not have one single corporate box. This was pointed out by Mikeneasom in the Sports Mail in the 70s.

The prospect of no Club at all doesn't bear thinking about. We may have to face up to it but I don't think it will come to this. Whatever league we finish up in, let's get behind them, and start enjoying life again.

P.S. The Premier is cr..p, I wouldn't want to be relegated from it but my disenchantment started there!. No lie.

Written by bstanle.

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.

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Date:Thursday January 21 2010
Time: 4:15PM


When we do stay up it's going to be have been through the sheer bloodymindedness of the fans who stuck with the club and cheered them through the bad times like the last administration stint, the promotion, the cup run, the various "Great Escapes" etc etc. It's gonna be down to the attitude of the Portsea Islanders infecting through to the players and the already very good spirit in the club that Avram calls "unique" and wouldn't happen anywhere else for a team in our situation. WHEN we stay up and survive it's going to be the biggest ever TWO FINGERS UP to the negative "crisis club" media, the Premier League, the pundits and all the JCLs who have turned to the darkside of those who plot against us.
21/01/2010 16:36:00
Being in the top division is wonderful... it's the premier league stuff thats crap... load of idiots making up for not much in the trouser dept.
21/01/2010 16:37:00
Welcome to Vital Pompey Bstanle.. Do ya know what I feel a lot like you. I said to Mrs Chix only last night that for the first time I can remember I am really not looking forward to the game tomorrow and might not even go .. That thought didn't last long but I was astonished that it even crossed my mind. The days of the old 3rd and 4th divisions were great times and ok we were all younger and expectations were a lot less but it was great and there was a real sense of 'belonging' then a real pride in 'being' Pompey.... Although I love watching Pompey in the Prem.. there is something very sterile about it .. something that doesn't quite fit with the city, it's people. it's culture .. The youngsters who have only really known the Prem will think us mad .. but there are a lot of 30-35+ people who feel the same. I really hope we stay up but I won't be crying should we get relegated .. In some respects it'll feel like going home .. and for the first time in 8 or 9 seasons we might be able to look at the top of a league table and think that we might be able to reach the summit .. What pre-season expectation have we had since getting in the prem.. survival .. targeting the top ten at best.. Makes ya think don't it .. oh and yes we are (still) the only Premiership club without corporate boxes..
21/01/2010 16:38:00
Welcome bstanle, and an interesting and agreeable read - Old Timer !!! I agree about the premier league, and still say that the most enjoyable season (in recent years) was the promotion year - winning, sunshine, excitement and flair play! Before that, we used to evaluate a season on how we enjoyed it, good points, bad points etc. Nowadays, it is all about stress, disenchantment and the need to buy this player and that! At the end of the season you're left shaking your head and stressing about avoiding relegation yet again. Don't get me wrong, the FA Cup, and Europe run were fantastic and very much appreciated....but what a cost! The Premier League has got to a stage where it could implode, unless you've got a mega powerful sugar daddy to bank roll the club....well, too many haven't and that will be the EPL's downfall.....Perhaps we're best off out of it before that happens..PUP
21/01/2010 16:39:00
I've been supporting, following and attending Pompey matches since 1979, so all four tiers of English football, and have to agree with many of your points bstanle. I loved the 82-83 Bobby Campbell Div 3 winning side, the Ball years (first time round) were great, but for me, the best season as a whole wasn't the season we won the FA Cup, nor our first in the Premier League, but without doubt the 2002-2003 First Division Championship season. What fun! And how exciting! That was just a bloody brilliant season. I remember coming back down the M1 from Grimsby on August Bank Holiday after Mark Burchill 'nicked us' that 1-0 win and listening to Five Live and Talksport and positively 'glowing with happiness' that we were top of the table. A feeling that didn't subside for a whole year! If i could have a 'Groundhog Year' that for me would be it! Brilliant times not repeated since, with 3 personal exceptions. The first two trips to Wembley (the 3rd was pants!) and a totally amazing trip to Wolfsburg. Those two days in Germany playing 'in Europe' will forever live in the memory, but as for most of the rest of the time in 'the richest league in the world'? Honestly, you can stick it. Let's have some fun again. Wherever we may be.
21/01/2010 17:00:00
What gets me is 3.5m is ALL that is needed to pay Idinese and dget the embargo lifted.... FFS Stop argueing about paying Peter and Paul, and PAY them the 3.5m and stop blaming everyone else. THe Fans means more to Pompey than 3.5m surely?
21/01/2010 17:06:00
I remember writing here last season that our LEVEL is fizz pop league and I was much, much happier there, and that MY disenchantment started with the hateful Premier League. I did not receive positive comments then and wonder how people feel now? Other fans will say 'you only think the EPL is crop because of your situation', well yes but we are scapegoats/sacrificial lambs/symptoms of the malaise that has infected English football. I reckon we owe less than most, it's just that, our unpopularity coupled with terrible financial management and blah blah blah, has blah blah blah; I can't even write anymore. As long as there is a Pompey to support next season is all that matters.
21/01/2010 19:18:00
Sorry Chix, in my sadness, forgot to say, good piece, I agree, very philosophical, thanks.
21/01/2010 19:20:00
We/they havn't got the 3.5M - that's the whole point. PUP
21/01/2010 19:29:00
Hi bstanle, good article, uch of which I agree with, and feel a lot the same - I have really been feeling like we don't belong in the premier league recently, and if relegation comes, it comes. There is something very sterile and corporate about the prem, and it doesn't fit with Pompey, we've always been a small club, backs against the wall, and its part of our identity. As long as the club is still going, that's the main thing. So if we're playing in the fizzy pop next season, I'll actually be pleased, it means we're still playing. But times are frantic and I'm feeling very frazzled, in fact I may even start trying to avoid Pompey talk for a while. As for Midge's comment - if its just a question of a mere 3.5M, then you stomp it up, cos the club aint got it.
21/01/2010 20:47:00
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