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[Archived] Blackburn Vs Portsmouth. Ewood Park, 7Th November.

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Pompey Preview – November 7th

Please note: I accept no liability for Swine Flu ruining the predictions in this preview!

When the previews came up for grabs I jumped at the chance to write this one. I was born in Portsmouth and live just outside, so I've got a good perspective of how our opposition will approach this game - I am almost like a Russian Spy.

Quite simply Pompey are in free-fall right now. They say that one team always struggles and that their poor form carries over the next season. The same can sometimes be said with the Uefa Cup (Europa League) being more of a poison chalice, than an opportunity to progress. Pompey found this out the hard way. They lived the dream, overspent, won the FA Cup and never recovered. Last week they were also given a transfer embargo. They may have destroyed Wigan 4-0, but nonetheless this should rate highly on Big Sam's 'do I bother to try and win this match?' chart.

Anyone that thinks that foreign ownership and massive expenditure is the forward for Rovers should consider how Pompey fans are feeling right now. Not only do they have the worst Premier League start they have also obtained the worst start in their history. They have swapped Jermaine Defoe for Danny Webber, Lassana Diarra for Michael Brown and Sol Campbell for Tal Ben Haim. Our visitors on November 7th will also not be fielding Crouch, Kranjcar, Matty Taylor or Glen Johnson. Forget about 'Arry Redknapp as well!

This man may make the long journey, and no, he is not from the circus!


Maybe we should ask Diouf to do a Gok Wan style makeover to make him (John Westwood) look more 'gangsta'?

This skews the importance of recent results as this will be a different sort of match. Neither team are looking towards the Europa League (Uefa Cup). However, the last few results have been balanced with each team winning one each in the league over the last three seasons.

19 August 2006: Portsmouth 3 – 0 Blackburn


Todorov, Kanu, Kanu

25th February 2007: Blackburn 3 – 0 Portsmouth


Nonda, Nonda, Warnock

Sunday 23rd September 2007: Blackburn 0 – 1 Portsmouth



27th April 2008: Portsmouth 0-1 Blackburn


Santa Cruz

30th November 2008: Portsmouth 3 – 2 Blackburn


Crouch, Defoe, Derbyshire, Tugay, Davis

9th May 2009: Blackburn 2-0 Portsmouth


Pedersen, McCarthy (PEN)

I can't think of too many players that have worn both shirts. Tim Sherwood played for Pompey in their promotion season and Andy Cole played a handful of games. Eyal Berkovic also played for them. Jason Roberts went there on loan early in his career, but never made a permanent transfer. In recent years Pompey have had interest in a few players that we have signed. We reportedly stole Kalinic as Pompey could not agree payment terms to his club. Nelsen and Reid were also targets around the time that we signed them. Jim Smith has managed both clubs and is idolised on the south coast.

Aaron Mokoena does make his return to Ewood Park. Part Hart has made him captain this season although he does seem to have been found out. I sometimes listen to the local Pompey radio commentary in the car. Former Pompey midfielder Alan McCloughlin decribes t'Axe as not being able to play in a 442 and not being good enough to play in a 451 either! I admit to nearly losing control of my car at that time!

Next the Q and A bit with a mate of mine called Mike - a former season ticket holder.

So Pompey... ouch.... who is at fault then?

You have got to blame the people upstairs. What is the point of spending money when you can't back it up?

Indeed. The past week has been good for you though. Is the Wigan victory a turning point?

You have got to hope so. At least the strikers are scoring again now (Dindane hat trick). The Wigan game was the start of a streak of winnable games for us.

So would you say that Rovers away is a winnable game for Pompey?

Any game against a team in the bottom half has to be winnable to us now. I think that the only team to survive a winless streak like ours were Liverpool 100 years ago??!!

What is your view of Rovers this season? Where do you see us finishing?

I like Dunn and Samba and I think that they would get into a lot of teams. Paul Robinson seems to have found his feet too. I see Rovers finishing 12th-15th. You won't be near enough to worry, but you're not good enough for the top half of the table.

Who is your Pompey player to look out for?

Kanu always seems to score against you.


Our new striker, Tommy Smith, is a good player. He isn't a number nine but he causes problems. Dindane has found his shooting boots too.

And what is Pompey's weakness?

Our defence could be a lot better and I think that our confidence could haunt us if Rovers go ahead early.


I think it will be a score-draw. We are playing well and I think that we have turned a corner.


In order to prove Mike wrong we played Fifa 10 and I won 1-0 with Benni Mac scoring!


In summary this is a must win match. If Pompey win and manage to get off the bottom of the table then we have definitely lost 6 points. The opposite is true if we win. I think we will need to win everything in the midfield so let's hope that Keith Andrews brings his passing boots.


So let's forget about the Le Arse and Manure defeats - We need another Burnley performance! Play up Rovers! :rover:

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Pompey in free fall, worst start to a premiership, 3 points behind us. We have to win this, simple. 2 strikers would nice also.

In free fall after a 4-0 win?

They have improved which can be dangerous - they are like a wounded animal, so we must take some caution.

Its important we keep it tight for the first 15 mins and not conceded a stupid goal as they will just park the bus if that happened. We need to be patient and ensure we take our chances, because we will get them! Pleasssssssse therefore do not play Roberts!!

Im going for 3-0 Rovers.

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In free fall after a 4-0 win?

They have improved which can be dangerous - they are like a wounded animal, so we must take some caution.

Its important we keep it tight for the first 15 mins and not conceded a stupid goal as they will just park the bus if that happened. We need to be patient and ensure we take our chances, because we will get them! Pleasssssssse therefore do not play Roberts!!

Im going for 3-0 Rovers.

I was quoting what was said in the preview,

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Yet another great preview!

We have got to look at this from the other side. The trip to Ewood is Pompey's most important game since the FA Cup Final and they will be preparing accordingly. They played well without getting results in two games then thrashed a Wigan side that didn't show up so confidence as well as determination will be sky high. A win for them can lift them out of the bottom 3 and keeps Hart in a job 'til Christmas- it gives them realistic belief in the possibility of survival.

Hopefully Sam will see that a containing approach is to invite trouble as Martinez found out with Wigan on Saturday. The weaknesses of Pompey are at the back and their midfield is at least as wonky as our's- look at all the games the Axe is getting. We simply have to attack them and know that our defence should be good enough to contain a team that is used to playing well and not taking its chances- prior to Wigan they were doing that.

When they go two behind Pompey are also used to falling apart so if we do turn round comfortably ahead, I do not want Sam telling the team to contain them in the second half. Two of the last twenty games in the Prem or 10% of them have seen very obvious odds on winners surrender 2-0s to 2-2 because they got cagey. (Arsenal v West Ham and Stoke v Wolverhampton) We should note the beneficiaries of those surprise draws are Prem strugglers.

I will go with Hughesy and predict the result that should be delivered at Ewood if Sam doesn't get it wrong: Rovers 3 Pompey 0

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Great preview, Pompey may have got the win on the weekend and have been playing alright lately without picking up the points but this is a game for us that we really need to look to win, it might not be a simple game but they don't come much easier. This is the sort of game where we find out whether or not were gonna be in trouble this season.

Come on Rovers!

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I was quoting what was said in the preview,

Not sure if that was directed at me, but here are my reasons for saying that they are in freefall.

Going from winning the FA Cup and playing AC Milan (and holding them 2-2 at Fratton Park) to:

Worst start ever

Replacing Crouch, Defoe, Diarra etc.. with Championship players like Michael Brown

New owners who didn't pay wages

Newer owners who haven't said how much they will invest

No new stadium

Bottom of the EPL

First win took until the 3rd of October vs Wolves

Coach (Paul Hart) promoted to manager instead of appointing a bigger name

'Arry Redknapp's quotes last week about knowing Pompey would have massive money problems

I think we would have more points had we not just played Arsenal, Man United, Chelsea and the Burnley derby. I expect us to pull away once our fixtures are more favourable and we also have the rearranged Fulham match on the 25th.

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Great preview with one missing link. The most famous Rovers/Portsmouth player was Billy Wilson....our left fullback when Keith Newton was right fullback (or have I got them the wrong way round). If anything from my memory many Rovers supporters thought Billy the better player.Again in my lifetime I would rate Wilson/Newton higher than Hird/Bailey and probably higher than Le Saux/Berg. But this is fairly subjective.

Anyway after about 10 years with us (Youth,Reserves and 240 plus matches for 1sts) he went to Pompey played 190 matches for them and then ran the pub next to Fratton Park! So RobboRover pop into the pub and if there's a 63 yearold landlord ask him about Ronnie and Bryan.

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Guest Kamy100

Great preview.

Rather worried about this game, mainly because the Pompey forward line is very quick (one of the quickest in the premier league) we have in the past struggled against forwards with pace. However Pompey are defensively weak so hopefully Rovers can expose that, tentative predicton Rovers 3-2 Pompey.

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Good to see John Westwood is still in touch with his feminine side.

Nice preview, thanks.

After the last three matches we are all desperate to classify any 'winnable' game as a 'must win', puts a bit of extra pressure on the players though so maybe not a good idea to shout it out too loudly (sshhh, but I agree).

The main thing is that we are at home so no excuses and none of this sitting back crap. If we attack as we did against Bumley then we are creative and good, we'll win easily. If we decide to protect the back four it will be 0-0 or they will have a shot from distance deflect in for the winner off a passing pigeons arse in the 93rd minute.

I'd give Diouf a rest and only play Peds off the bench if at all. They're nervous at the back so let Junior run at them from deep, stick Kalinic and Di Santo together up front (the height will terrify them), Dunny supporting just behind. Grella for the holding and distribution role.

Come on Sam go for it, make us feel good again.

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Portsmouth have been playing well this season, they just haven't had the results to show for it. They've had to convincing wins in a row and will no doubt be confident going into this one. Aruna Dindane is someone we have to be careful of, because he can either be totally useless and not be able to hit a barn door or he can run you ragged with his pace. We have done quite well at home this season and I'm expecting for this to continue on Saturday. We've had a tough month and we were never going to get anything out of the Arsenal, Chelsea or Man U games (although the performances in some of these games was shocking) and now we have these tough games out of the way, we should be more confident of a few more wins over the next month. I think we'll win this one 3-1, with Di Santo, Dunn and McCarthy getting the goals.

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Portsmouth have been playing well this season, they just haven't had the results to show for it.

Wasn't the same said about us under Ince's tenure? We passed it about alright but still dropped points for fun.

I'm taking Pompey's win over an atrocious Wigan with a pinch of salt. Away from home, they won't be the same prospect and I fully expect us to take the game to them but still make hard work of it as Sam tells the lads to take their foot off the gas.

1-0 Rovers.

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