EDITORIAL: Pompey praise where praise is due - PCC, Penny & Co
By truebluearmy.com
Saturday 18 Feb 2012 09:35:00
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Truebluearmy.com and its sister site Pompey-fans.com have long campaigned for an independent investigation into the events that led to Pompey going into administration in 2010 owing Portpin a reported £17m.

In consequence, we are delighted to see the appointment of Trevor Birch of PKF, and trust that he will put the club onto a sound footing and find the new owner, or ownership model, with the vision and ability to make this football club great again.

At this time we think it is important to acknowledge some of the people and organisations who have played a major role in the fight to save Pompey.

Firstly, Portsmouth City Council has been repeatedly asked to “do something” by Pompey fans. Those fans can be assured it has been working and negotiating behind the scenes to ensure that Fratton Park is preserved as a football ground. This work itself closed off the possibility of liquidating the club and developing the stadium. That single factor is the reason why, as fans, we won't have to lie down in front of bulldozers.

More importantly, PCC took decisive action and challenged the administration order appointing Andrew Andronikou, opening the way to Birch's appointment by the High Court. As a creditor they were entitled to do so and they took the opportunity to do what was needed at the first realistic opportunity.

Secondly, the Pompey Supporters' Trust has done a fine job of working to pull all parties together, lobbying Pompey's case with the Football League and taking on Andrew Andronikou and ensuring there was a working group operating in harmony. Its reputation and that of its Chairman, Ashley Brown, are suitably and commendably enhanced.

While there have been hiccups along the way, Ashley has managed to keep most other fans' groups, via the PFC Fans' Conference, focused on fighting for the club rather than each other. The almost universal euphoria which greeted Friday's news from the High Court is a testament to that.

Thirdly, Penny Mordaunt MP has done an excellent job of raising awareness by using Prime Minister's Question Time and negotiating with HMRC, while also working with the Trust and other fans groups. Honourable mentions are also due here to Mike Hancock MP, who raised PFC's plight publicly and privately with the Sports Minister some weeks ago who then raised the matter with HMRC and the Football League, and Caroline Dinenage MP, who has also been a stalwart supporter of the Pompey cause.

Finally, and they don't often get praised, but The News deserve real credit for the way they have helped to rally people behind the club and refused to be browbeaten by anybody during these difficult times.

Local journalism is a tightrope at the best of times, and covering the local football club has the added dimension of having to dance on the head of a pin simultaneously. The News has managed to do so with distinction.

We hope that the appointment of Trevor Birch heralds a new dawn for Pompey, one in which the mysterious, disreputable, risky and reckless characters and dealings of some of our previous owners and executives can be placed firmly in the past.

We urge all fans to back the 12th Man initiative and the Pompey Supporters Trust. There is now no excuse for any fan with the club's best interests at heart not to 'Pack the Park' from here on in.

Every pound spent with Pompey will go towards saving the club and bringing in an owner who can help the club grow, but most especially, grow sustainably.

Play Up Pompey!

truebluearmy.com

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