Writer: Steve Guscott
Date:Friday August 13 2010
So it's clearly been a tough summer to be a Portsmouth fan, what`s the situation at the club right now? Do you still have a transfer embargo in place?
The situation 'seems' to be picking up a bit, we won our court case with the taxman so our CVA is sorted out - we will, all being well, be moving out of administration very soon and will have a new owner, albeit an old one in place, and 'maybe' this will be announced before the game tomorrow...
The embargo is still in place, although we have special dispensation to sign a certain number of players - in all honesty I do not think we should be allowed to do much business anyway, although free agents and loanees 'should' be something we can pick up more of soon.
With so few players in your squad, what are your expectations for the season? Just to avoid relegation, or more than that?
I have said several times that survival this season would be viewed as a plus, and a positive season - 'if' things can move forward a little, with a few more loan/freebie arrivals I think we can finish comfortably in midtable.
I noticed you signed one of our 2006 Championship winning team, Ibrahima Sonko. How is the big man getting on down on the South Coast? And what about Jamie Ashdown?
It is too soon to say to be honest, as we have only seen a couple of games from him and a pre-season friendly, Linvoy Primus' testimonial. He seems ok, although his passing ability is woeful!
As for Ashdown, we have had him for several years although we released him at the end of last season but, for me, in a 'panic move' brought him back. Clearly I can see why we did but I have to admit I am not really his biggest fan and his performances so far this season have not left me brimming with confidence and I would have gone with the young, albeit inexperienced, Liam O'Brien - I do hope that a 'proper run' as the no.1 will install some much needed confidence in him?
We are bringing a large number of supporters down on Saturday, and are clearly looking forward to the game. Whats the Pompey thoughts - guess this is our local derby of sorts this season?
As I live in Devon these days it works out 'pretty useful' for me as it is one of the closest games to get to for me, all are away games for me these days but the trip to Reading is a good one, and straight through on the train! It does not surprise me that you are bringing a fair few, I am sure we will do the same.
You are right really, in many ways it is a derby game but in others it is just 'another game' really - although having won the last 7-4 the hope will be high for another classic.
How are you expecting to line up on Saturday?
I would 'think' much as we have so far this season, although new signing Carl Dickinson 'could' come in at left back perhaps? I would do this, if he has been registered on time, and move Matty Ritchie up to left midfield where he would be better served, and would definitely offer more than John Utaka would!
Who is your player to watch?
I am a Ritchie fan, so if he plays and can deliver as he can he could put in some telling balls but Marc Wilson, albeit after only a couple of games, is looking top quality - I just hope 'if' West Brom come in with an improved bid we can turn that down too.
Who do you most fear in our team?
In all honesty I do not really pay much attention to what is going on with other sides, we have had enough on with our own, so do not really know what the score is with your squad. So, I cannot really say one players sticks out as a 'main threat' for me, sorry... That is not to say that I do not fear Reading!
Finally, give us a score prediction....
My heart and my head usually differ on predictions, and have for as long as I can remember - I feel, maybe the heart ruling the head again, that Pompey will be carried on by the Fratton Faithful and pick up a 2-1 win.
Thanks to Rug for taking the time to chat to us. Head over to Vital Portsmouth for all the Pompey build up to the big game on Saturday.
Date:Friday August 13 2010
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