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Looking at the starting line-up of the Portsmouth team which beat Sheffield Wednesday 3-1 last Saturday, I found myself coming across EIGHT newly-signed players out of eleven.
Hislop, Diabate, Foxe De Zeeuw, Taylor, Robinson, Merson and Pericard were all signed over the summer, and of the three other players, Todorov was only signed in March; whilst Primus and Harper are the veterans having spent two years at the club.
Is this a problem? No, provided promotion is won to the Premiership where the club can make the money to sustain these players' wage demands. A good start has been made to the campaign with Pompey, on 48 points from 20 games, currently seven points ahead of closest rivals Leicester City, and 12 ahead of the chasing pack.
However, injuries are creeping up and there is a problem in the defence with key players not fully match-fit, to add to the problems we have with Paul Merson's ankle. With so many clubs struggling financially in the Football League, Pompey have got to ensure they don't over-stretch their budget because with so much money spent, and continually paying high wages to our players week after week, non-promotion will bring the whole club down to below the level it was at two years ago, where we avoided relegation in the last 90 minutes of the season.
With 18,000 plus in the stands tomorrow for the clash at Fratton Park against Walsall, I will be watching for a bargain student rate of £9 in the front row of the North Stand. Should we be promoted, I will happily pay £15 to watch the likes of Manchester United come here next season.