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Discussion Starter #1
Our first foray into European competition since our slightly understated displays in the Anglo-Italian Cup over 15 years ago. (try and tell Notts County fans it was a mickey mouse comp :smileani:)

The draw for the first round takes place at 12 today after a slightly less glam but possibly equally as cringeworthy half-hour of nonsense.

We are hilariously seeded for the draw and one of these teams stand in our way to a place in the lucrative (ha!) group stages.

- VfL Wolfsburg
- Vitória S.C.
- FC Red Bull :)yuck:) Salzburg
- Kayserispor
- FBK Heart of Midlothian

Wolfsburg and Vitoria would be extremely tough draws atm, Salzburg probably also (although for selfish reasons I'd love to go there again). Kayseri had a great season last term and have signed some decent players (and Julius Agahowa). Kaunas would be the best draw but even they disposed of last year's finalists, a team who are as impotent as us atm

I can't wait!
 

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And it is Vitoria Guimaraes. You really think it is a tough draw? Wolfsburg would have been a bad draw, but the rest? Ok, Pompey is not in a good form, but I hope that'll change until then.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
they were extremely unlucky to miss out on a place in yesterday's draw tbh, but perhaps we should be expected to edge it over the two legs. The first is at FP on the 18th September, the second in Portugal on the 2nd October.

Might try and get out there, perhaps a ferry to Santander then a long hike south to Guimaraes. Looks a pretty nice place and the stadium doesnt look too shabby either.

Shame Pedro isnt still with us to face his former club tho :(
 

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they were extremely unlucky to miss out on a place in yesterday's draw tbh, but perhaps we should be expected to edge it over the two legs. The first is at FP on the 18th September, the second in Portugal on the 2nd October.

Might try and get out there, perhaps a ferry to Santander then a long hike south to Guimaraes. Looks a pretty nice place and the stadium doesnt look too shabby either.

Shame Pedro isnt still with us to face his former club tho :(
Yes, you're right. Guimarães is a pretty nice place and it is definitely worth that adventure trip of yours. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Squad released today (Only 23 because we couldnt find 2 other youth players :rollani:)

GOALKEEPERS:

Jamie Ashdown
David James

DEFENDERS:

Nadir Belhadj
Sol Campbell
Sylvain Distin
Hermann Hreiðarsson
Glen Johnson
Younes Kaboul
Noé Pamarot
Armand Traoré

MIDFIELDERS:

Papa Bouba Diop
Sean Davis
Lassana Diarra
Richard Hughes
Niko Kranjčar
Glen Little
Arnold Mvuemba
Matt Ritchie
Marc Wilson

FORWARDS:

Peter Crouch
Jermain Defoe
Nwankwo Kanu
John Utaka

Not Included: Lauren, David Nugent, Jerome Thomas, Ben Sahar, Richard Duffy & Djimi Traoré
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Neighbours followed by our first foray into Europe :thumbsup: Channel 5 finally getting it right almost 10 years after those early Spice Girls/bad signal/late friday night adolescent tugfest days.

We start with the side that roasted Boro (yes in that way) in the 2nd half on Saturday, with Diop and Kaboul warming the bench. Glen Little is alive and Kanu makes his first squad this season as well.

Guimaraes are missing quite a few key players and as cliched as it is we must take full advantage. A 2-0 win pleeeeaaasse.

PUP PPU

Tonight's lineup

 

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Discussion Starter #8
3 superb performances on the trot now after an abysmal start :) can't remember a better run of displays since our glorious promotion year.

Belhadj and Diarra were both sublime with Traore, Defoe and Johnson also standing out. Can really see Niko struggling to get his place back with the extremely promising partnership our two left-sided loanees have struck up, just unbelievable pace and ability down that side.

Their keeper kept them in it and despite a worrying 15 minutes after we scored the 2nd we were comfortable. No away goals conceded and a healthy lead to take to Portugal in two weeks. PUP PPU!!!

Our first two goals in Europe :proud:

Diarra 1-0

Defoe 2-0
 

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Discussion Starter #9
FT: Portsmouth 2 - 0 Vitória de Guimarães

18 September 2008

POMPEY 2 VITORIA SC 0



Pompey’s UEFA Cup adventure got off to the perfect start with strikes from Lassana Diarra and Jermain Defoe giving them a two-goal lead to take to Portugal for the second leg.

There should have been more goals but both Defoe and Vitoria’s Fajardo missed penalties in an eventful 90 minutes at Fratton Patk

Harry Redknapp made two changes for the Blues’ first foray into Europe. Nadir Belhadj and John Utaka came into the side with Younes Kaboul and Papa Bouba Diop dropping to the bench.

The opening stages were largely uneventful. Armand Traore did embark on a surging run into the Vitoria box from his own half, but he was eventually crowded out.

Roberto was the first name in referee Knut Kircher’s book on 18 minutes. The Vitoria striker was shown a yellow card for hacking down Diarra, after the midfielder had burst clear near the halfway line.

The first shot of the match finally arrived on 19 minutes – and it fell Pompey’s way. Utaka found Peter Crouch, who in turn laid it off to Defoe but the striker’s curling strike was tipped over the bar by Nilson.

Utaka almost put the Blues ahead from the resulting corner. The ball found its way to the Nigerian on the edge of the area and his low shot was deflected onto the post.

But at the other end, Sol Campbell was forced to concede a corner to prevent Desmarets from meeting Danilo’s superb cross from the right.

Defoe blazed the ball high over the bar on 32 minutes after Belhadj and Crouch had combined to tee up the England striker.

He had an even better chance five minutes later, making space for himself in the area before hitting a fierce shot that was brilliantly saved by Nilson.

But DIARRA broke the deadlock soon after with a stunning goal. The France midfielder burst inside from wide on the left, played a neat one-two with Defoe and fired an unstoppable effort into the net.

The visitors were handed an immediate chance to equalise when Campbell bundled over Roberto in the box. Fajardo stepped up to take the spot-kick but sent his shot over the bar and into the Fratton end.

Half Time: Pompey 1 Vitoria 0

Pompey should have doubled their advantage four minutes after the restart but this time it was the Blues who failed from the spot after Defoe had been blatantly tripped in the area by Moreno.

The Blues striker picked himself up to take the penalty and although it was placed right in corner, Nilson guessed the right way and pushed the ball clear.

Vitoria almost punished the miss immediately. A quick free-kick was played into Roberto’s path but the Brazilian dragged his shot wide of the post.

Traore’s pace caused the visitors problems on 56 minutes. The winger burst down the left and sent in a pin-point cross towards Crouch, but his header was caught on the line by Nilson.

Pompey’s service from the left was causing Vitoria all kinds of problems – and it provided the Blues with their second goal on the hour.

Belhadj whipped a delightful low cross into the box, allowing the unmarked DEFOE to sweep the ball home from close range.

Defoe could have added a third minutes later after latching onto Crouch’s flick, but Nilson flung himself to his right to push the ball behind.

Vitoria were inches away from reducing the deficit on 67 minutes. Joao Alves’ free-kick from wide on the left thundered its way through a host of bodies before the unsighted David James managed to divert it just past the post.

Moreno tried his luck with a 25-yard daisycutter as the Portuguese side tried to get back in the game but James comfortably held the Vitoria skipper’s strike.

But Pompey were not going to just sit back on their two-goal advantage. They would have had a third on 79 minutes if Nilson had not somehow got a hand to Traore’s thunderbolt from 12-yards out.

The Blues could not increase their lead despite pushing forward late in the game, so they will take a two-goal advantage to Estadio D. Afonso Henriques in two weeks time.

Pompey: James; Johnson, Campbell (c), Distin, Belhadj; Utaka (Diop 74), Diarra, Davis, A Traore (Hreidarsson 90); Crouch (Kanu 90), Defoe

Goals: Diarra 39, Defoe 60

Booked: Campbell

Subs: Ashdown, Kaboul, Mvuemba, Little

Vitoria: Nilson; Andrezinho, Danilo, Moreno (c), Gregory. Momha (Luciano 55); Fajardo (Coral 64), Wenio, Joao Alves, Desmarets; Roberto

Booked: Roberto, Fajardo, Moreno

Subs: Santos, Sereno, Carlitos, Ronaldo, Lamelas

Referee: Knut Kircher (Germany)
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Will have to ask me mam first if I can stay up to watch our first competitve away tie in Europe, seriously I've got a very bad feeling about tonight (almost as nervous as I was in the weeks leading up to the 17th May). If they score in the first 30 minutes I fully expect us to crumble, especially with European superstar Hughes in the centre. Not happy about Belhadj missing out and Pamarot's inclusion could signal Kaboul's era as this seasons Nugent.

Fingers crossed for a 1-1, imo the best we can hope for

PUP PPU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

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Discussion Starter #11
time for bed methinks......0-2 and an utterly fcuking shocking display thus far. embarassing stuff, sort if out twitchy.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I think I just came. love you Crouchy.

We've been the better side since half-time but have failed to create any decent chances, Traore looks utterly spent and has been shocking with his delivery tonight. Thankfully the two statues Hughes and Davis are off and Belhadj finally on. Shame Lassie had to pick tonight to have his worst game in a Blues' shirt so far

15 mins of extra time left. PUP PPU!!!!! got work it 4 hours :(
 

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I went to bed on 79 minutes thinking you'd never score. Well done, although I'll be honest I wanted Portsmouth out, as I don't like them. Seriously why do you play Davis still? And I thought Hughes would have left when you bought Mendes. I like Belhadj, he was shite against us, but since then he's been impressive.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
No surprise that Belhadj was involved in the goal that sealed the tie, Traore ran out of steam around the 60 minute mark and should never have played the full 120. On the opposite flank, Glen Johnson just edged Peter Crouch as our best player on the night.

Davis does have his moments but isnt good enough to partner Diarra in the long term, Hughes just seems to be happy to part of a Premiership squad and playing his 7 or 8 games a season. As inconsistent as Sulley was last year he was on a different level to those two and Diop. In terms of the other options I'm in the minority in being a fan of Mvuemba, can play a great through ball although he's almost as lightweight as Gary O'Neil

Overall we deserved to go through, the atrocious first 45 on Thursday aside we dominated them over the two legs. The pots for the draw look very daunting though, maybe two sneaky home wins and a third place finish is the best we can hope for.

Two goals that sealed Crouchie's place in PFC folklore:

Crouch 1-2

Crouch 2-2
 

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Discussion Starter #15
FT: Vitória de Guimarães 2 - 2 Portsmouth AET (2 - 4 on aggregate)

2 October 2008

AET: VITORIA 2 POMPEY 2 (2-4)



Peter Crouch fired Pompey into the UEFA Cup group stages with two extra-time goals after Vitoria SC had threatened to spoil the party at the Estadio D. Afonso Henriques.

The hosts scored twice in the first half to take the game beyond 90 minutes, before Crouch met Glen Johnson’s superb cross to send the Blues’ 3,000 travelling supporters into raptures.

Harry Redknapp made two changes from the side that beat Spurs at the weekend, with Noe Pamarot and Sean Davis replacing Nadir Belhadj and Glen Little.

Vitoria had an excellent opportunity early in the tie when Joao Alves found Douglas in the centre, but the striker scuffed his shot high into the air and David James was able to comfortably claim the ball.

The Blues were being put under plenty of pressure as Redknapp and Joe Jordan frantically dished out instructions from their technical area.

Danilo should have scored when he met Desmarets’ corner from wide on the right but the ball sailed wide of the post.

But the hosts were ahead on 19 minutes. Sol Campbell and Sylvain Distin failed to deal with a cross from deep on the left, allowing Douglas to fire home.

Pompey’s first decent opportunity arrived on 27 minutes but Andrezinho did well to head the ball behind and prevent Peter Crouch from connecting with a great cross by Glen Johnson.

Vitoria levelled the tie five minutes later. Lassana Diarra was punished for a foul 30-yards from goal and the ball was laid off to Joao Alves, who lashed it into the bottom corner of James’ net.

Glen Johnson almost got a decisive away goal just before the interval but, after embarking on a mazy run, his drive was palmed behind by Nilson.

Half Time: Vitoria 2 Pompey 0 (2-2)

The Blues created a decent opening five minutes after the restart but Armand Traore overhit the ball after playing a neat one-two with Jermain Defoe.

Crouch then hit an angled shot straight into the arms of Nilson after Johnson’s incisive pass found him in the Vitoria area.

Pompey were looking a lot brighter in the second half as they passed the ball around and bombed forward down the wings.

But James was called into action on 60 minutes, diving low to his left to keep out Douglas’ 20-yard drive.

Nilson was having a fairly quiet evening in the Vitoria goal and he made a comfortable save to keep out Crouch’s weak header on 81 minutes.

Johnson then lofted the ball inches over the bar after Richard Hughes had headed down Traore’s corner on the edge of the area.

After 90 Minutes: Vitoria 2 Pompey 0 (2-2)

The first chance of extra-time fell the hosts’ way and James did well to keep hold of Fajardo’s angled drive with a host of white shirts waiting to pounce on the loose ball.

At the other end, Pompey broke quickly down the right but Defoe could only find the side netting with his low shot.

James then kept the Blues in it with a superb save to deny Alves from point-blank range before Flavio’s header was ruled out for offside.

CROUCH then got the goal that sent the travelling Blue army wild with delight, converting Johnson’s excellent right-wing cross with a header at the near post.

Half Time (Extra Time): Vitoria 2 Pompey 1 (2-3)

Any lingering doubts about Pompey’s progress were quickly extinguished in the second half of extra-time when CROUCH latched onto Nadir Belhadj’s pass and lashed the ball into the roof of the net.

Pompey: James; Pamarot, Campbell (c), Distin; Johnson, A Traore; Davis (Mvuemba 73), Diarra, Hughes (Belhadj 99); Defoe (Kaboul 106), Crouch

Goals: Crouch 105, 111

Subs not used: Ashdown, Hreidarsson, Little, Kanu

Vitoria SC: Nilson; Danilo, Gregory, Luciano (Fajardo 79); Amdrezinho, Alves, Flavio (c), Wenio, Desmarets; Douglas (Carlitos 63 (Coral 75)), Roberto

Goals: Douglas 19, Alves 32

Booked: Douglas, Flavio, Danilo

Subs not used: Serginho, Moreno, Tiago, Momha

Referee: Selcuk Dereli (Turkey)

Attendance: 18,000
 

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Milan is a great draw, and Wolfsburg... damn that I won't make it there during the week. I hope Pompey kicks them in the ass...
 

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Discussion Starter #18
FT: SC Braga 3 - 0 Portsmouth

an utter abortion of a performance, just completely outclassed technically in midfield. AC Milan next

BRAGA 3 POMPEY 0



Pompey’s first UEFA Cup Group E match ended in defeat with their Portuguese hosts easing to victory at the Braga Municipal Stadium.

Harry Redknapp made one change from the side that drew with Aston Villa at the weekend, with Hermann Hreidarsson replacing the injured Glen Johnson.

It was the hosts who had the first decent chance of the match with just three minutes on the clock, but Luis Aguiar fired well wide from the edge of the box.

But Pompey were soon looking dangerous themselves. A Glen Little corner caused havoc in the Braga penalty box, allowing Hreidarsson to flick the ball on for a marginally offside Sol Campbell.

Papa Bouba Diop was then harshly booked for a challenge on Matheus, when he looked to have won the ball.

But worse was to come from the resulting free-kick. Aguiar curled a delightful 30-yard effort into the top corner of the net, leaving David James completely helpless.

The Blues were then forced into an early change when Little limped off clutching his hamstring and was replaced by John Utaka.

Crouch soon joined Diop in the referee’s notebook for a late challenge on Vandinho, although the Braga midfielder fell to the ground like he had been shot.

Defoe then had two excellent opportunities to draw Pompey level on 30 minutes. First, he latched onto Crouch’s header but fired straight at Eduardo and then seconds later his angled drive was also kept out by the Braga keeper.

Half Time: Braga 1 Pompey 0

Nadir Belhadj replaced Hreidarsson for the start of the second half as Pompey looked to try and get back in the game.

But instead they found themselves two goals behind when Aguiar’s through ball found Renteria and the striker swept the ball into the bottom corner.

Pompey were passing the ball around neatly enough and Armand Traore was continuously getting free down the left, but the final ball was never really testing Eduardo or his defenders.

They did have the ball in the back of the net on 60 minutes but Diop’s header was ruled out after referee Darko Ceferin spotted some pushing in the area.

Kanu came on for Traore for the last half an hour as Redknapp made his final throw of the dice.

But it was the hosts who next came closest to scoring. Aguiar received the ball in plenty of space on 72 minutes but he scuffed his shot well wide.

Defoe’s shot was turned behind the post by Eduardo on 82 minutes after the striker had done well to hold the ball up in the area.

And the Blues’ misery was complete late in the game when Alan lashed the ball home after Sean Davis’ mis-kick had come back off the post.

Pompey: James; Pamarot, Campbell (c), Distin, Hreidarsson (Belhadj 46); Little (Utaka 21), Davis, Diop, A. Traore (Kanu 62); Defoe, Crouch

Booked: Diop, Crouch, Pamarot, Belhadj

Subs not used: Ashdown, Wilson, Mvuemba, Hughes

SC Braga: Eduardo; Frechaut (c), Moises, Rodriguez, Evaldo; Alan, Vandinho (Cesar 87), Aguiar, Matheus (Peixoto 64); Meyong, Renteria (Stelvio 83)

Goals: Aguiar 7, Renteria 47, Alan 88

Booked: Renteria

Subs not used: Felgueiras, Pereira, Mossoro, Jorginho

Referee: Darko Ceferin (Slovenia)

Attendance: 12,000
 

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Big game against Milan today and I will definitely watch it. PUP PPU!!

These days I make myself as rare as DavidSilk in this forum. ;) Damn work... students, enjoy your university life! :D
 
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