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Division 5:20, Euro League
Manager: Scottmcgarvey
Pompey's pre-season...
Blues win both games 1-0 - vs AC Oxgangs and Mossley Hill No Marks
Portsmouth scheduled 2 pre-season games (both at home), in what seems a slightly shortened 'off-season' (or am I just getting older).  Squeezed in at the end of the season and before the new one kicks off in the Euro League Cup tomorrow. First to visit Fratton were old acquaintance AC Oxgangs (StMirren).  It might not be a 'big deal' - but these two Managers were appointed just *eight* days apart, back in January 2010, some 9 and a half years ago.  They have played 4 times previously (the last in 2017), with the blues prevailing in all 4.  In this friendly, Pompey just edged it 1-0 (3-1 on chances).

Blues Manager Scott McGarvey mixed things up at the interval, at which point there had been just a single chance.  Whilst keeping a strong XI out there (and started with), he made 5 changes in all, 3 at the interval, another on the hour, and the last 10 minutes later - trying to give game time to as many as possible.  Pompey were then a bit fortunate to 'steal' the game *very* late on - with Tomas Jesus Cruz heading home in the 88th minute.

3 days later, Chardonney brought his Mossley Hill No Marks team over to Fratton Park.  Again, it was a close(ish) 1-0 win for the Blues (4-1 on chances) - though it was noted that the No Marks put a lot of their fringe and younger players out.  The 2 bosses have met before in the Championship League of Dazcreed, and have been known to sort out friendlies before, in the past (though not of the 'series' that MHNM have with Ford Capri 1600 GT !)

Mossley have impressively got themselves into Division 4i though, coming through the play-offs, and we wish them very well in what will be a tough division - McGarvey though "rates the nous" of his colleague, and thinks that "even if his squad is not the strongest, he will make the best use of it, and will have too much tactically for some of the managers there.

Back to the game, it was settled 2 minutes before half-time by a Gustavo Tizzone strike - before the interval saw a *mass* of substitutions.  All 5 came on for MHNM, and Pompey put on 3, followed by 2 more later.  McGarvey seemed pleased that all his players have now had a run-out.  Also that both games transpired to be good tests of 'where Pompey were' in there training & preparation - and we thank both Managers, and wish them well.

There was a surprise in store for Pompey fans - an unexpected exit (although with 3 keepers on the books, it was never going to be 'forever' like that).  But, surprisingly it was the Blues' #1 keeper Sigurgeir Alfreðsson that left.  He had played the vast majority of games in the last 4 seasons for the team.  Though it was said (especially at first), that he never really 'won over' the blues fans.  He joined aged 30 for a big 2.5m fee from Westland FC (Xpert International), and left Pompey for Suburbia Giants of the Master League. 

He does go into the very top division though - after they were quick into the transfer market following the injury to their #1 (and only) keeper.  We wish 'Siggy' well at his new club.  He was signed for a little under 600,000 - with Pompey getting a little under half a million once the agent fees were taken off. Will Pompey look for another #1? - "Watch this space" we suppose.  Isaac Cabanas is not getting any younger (and is probably the weakest #1 - on paper - in the division), and Josué Bustarmante is not nearly ready.

2019-07-29 17:33 1560 Views Reporter: Sayan44

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