Season Preview: Portsmouth

Last updated : 13 August 2009 By Chris Wells
How did you fare last season?
With having 3 managers last season, survival was the best that we could hope for. We have a lot to thank Paul Hart and Brian Kidd for in retaining our Premier League status.

How do you expect you'll do this season?
The much-reported takeover of the club has put it in turmoil for a lot of fans.

We have sold our major assets: Crouch, Johnson, Defoe etc.  Survival is the best we can hope for again this year. We've not replaced the quality we've sold so far and the takeover is still not complete.

The injection of money is lacking from future and current owners.

What have you done in the transfer market this summer? Which of your new signings are you expecting most from?
The majority of our transfers have either been sales or releasing players. Seeing as Piquionne scored twice against Rangers last week, we expect him to score the goals that we've not scored in pre-season so far.

Where do you think you'll need to strengthen in the January transfer window?
We've not really strengthened in the Summer transfer window yet. As things stand we still need a proven, clinical striker and some creativity in the midfield. We are overloaded with defensive players.

Have you any promising youngsters breaking into the team?
With Paul Hart in charge, he has seemed keen to bring the Academy team through into the first team. His hand is slightly forced with the financial situation at the club, but players like Marc Wilson all have a part to play this season, I feel.

Have you got the right man in charge of the team? Will he still be there at the end of the season?
We have the right man in charge for the price we could afford.  That sounds a little cynical but understandable considering our current plight.

However, we feel he deserves his chance. He kept us in the league last season so we owe him a full season in charge to see what he can do. Consistency is key.  Not everyone is a fan of his tactics so far in pre-season nor his choice of player, trialists or not.

If he is here at the end of the season I feel it'll be down to the fact we've still got no more money (sorry, I know that's sitting on the fence slightly).

Is the club being run well? Are you likely to be singing 'Sack the board' any time soon?
We're singing it already! Joke! We are in a situation where we're in a huge amount of debt and, according to rumour, are pretty close to administration and going out of business completely. If it wasn't for us being able to sell some players we'd have been long gone.

Which team do you most want to beat and why?
Spurs. Isn't the reason obvious?

Who do you think will win the league?
Man Utd will again hold the league title. Can't see anyone else getting close. Man City have spent a fortune but a group of stars does not a team make.

Who do you think's going down?
Automatically you have to look at the newly promoted teams or are Hull going to have second season syndrome?

How do you think Hull City will fare this season?
It's your second season in the Premier League and that can be dangerous. So many other teams have stumbled.

With Phil Brown in charge though you have someone who will recognise this and will not tolerate it at all.  So all things considered, you should survive again this season but it will be close.

Chris Wells writes for MyPompey

Click here to read what Mark from MyPompey said at the end of last season about how Portsmouth got on in 2008/09