Is Relegation A Certainty For Pompey This Year?
A massive apology for a lack of articles lately, I have recently started a master’s degree at University and I have also fractured my ankle (playing 5-a-side) as well as a number of other things that have been happening. But, I am back now and an article from Josh Ashdown of the Guardian recently appeared that suggested the top and bottom spot in the Championship is pretty much decided if you look at history. At the time of writing the article it suggested that QPR would go up and Pompey would go down if you look at similar clubs in those positions in recent seasons. I am not trying to instil hindsight here on John, but on Friday night, Pompey picked up as massive 6-1 win against a 10 man Leicester side and it got me wondering if they could really go against the trend.
Even though the result was against ten men it was still very impressive from a side that has struggled from the first game week and will really give everyone involved with the club a boost. It will have delighted Steve Cotterill to see four of the six goals scored by new signings Liam Lawrence and Dave Kitson, as well as Dave Nugent getting himself reacquainted with England’s second tier. Kitson could be a massive signing for Pompey as managers know he has great ability but I always felt that in the Premier League he often lacked a bit of confidence to really drive himself forward and he has a real chance to get that confidence back in the Championship. Liam Lawrence is another great signing for the club who will provide a lot of depth in midfield and a real cutting edge for the club, they may have lost Marc Wilson, but they gained two players who will really be effective for them this season.
The result unsurprisingly came as a massive relief to Cotterill who is really pressed for resources on the South Coast and he will need to use all his man management skills in order to help Pompey survive. It was a 6-1 result, but I said at the start of the season that Pompey would struggle this year and I still believe that they have a long hard relegation battle ahead of them. Cotterill is a great manager though and we saw on Friday that there are goals in this side and he will be hoping that that result will springboard their season and help them get a bit of form going into the winter months. They do have a very small squad which is bound to catch up on them as injuries are inevitable for any football club, so it is best that they get as many points on the board as soon as possible.
Another home tie comes up tonight against fellow strugglers Bristol City and Portsmouth will be reunited with a familiar face in that of David James, but old union’s aside, this is a pretty big game for both clubs. Both are at the foot of the table and are in desperate need of the points. It will be interesting to see how Pompey play after the Leicester result and fans will be hopeful that they can play with confidence and put in another good display. So are Pompey destined to go down, or can they buck the trend?