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Can Saints and Pompey Survive Peacefully?

12 months ago my football team was in dire straits and looked at one point like going out of business. It didn't and for that I am for ever grateful.

Whilst we were down we received a plentiful supply of abuse from fans of Pompey. Openly enjoying our plight they seemed to wish for our termination.

We survived and thanks to one Markus Leibherr we are now talking about making a full recovery. How long this will take I know not. Nor do I really care, just so long as we can see a steady improvement year on year.

This year we see that Pompey are in an even worse position. Their debts are far more than ours ever were. They are in a position where the size of their debt means more cash is needed to acquire the club than was for So'ton.

Pompey find themselves in a far worse than ours ever was because of their ground. We did at least have a newly built stadium which can cater for larger audiences than Fratton Park.

Fratton Park is dire and needs demolishing so that a new ground can be built to replace it. The Fratton faithful can make the ground a fortress with their chants when the ground is full. I can imagine the sound they could generate from a ground equal to ours.

I am not gloating when I say that I fully expect to see Saints in place above Pompey in twelve months time.

Such is the severity of their position that I feel for the fans. I can not go along with the fans who are rubbing their hands in glee at their suffering. Having been there only months ago I still feel the joy and relief that was felt once we knew that the club was safe.

I get seriously annoyed when some youngsters hide behind the police lines whilst making threatening gestures. Even more so when groups of so called fans throw bricks at coaches, knowing full well that they are safe from retaliation. Cowardly scum.

How can the people who perpetrate these acts of violence call themselves fans? We have troops dying to protect civilisation and these morons want to fight. Not even fairly though, but behind cover knowing that they are safe.

I have seen it from both sides of the fence. At home and away I have witnessed moments of depraved stupidity from both sets of fans.

Now as a Saints fan I ask whether our rivalry is better or worse than that of other clubs. Utd and City, Arsenal and Spurs, Liv'pool and Everton, Norwich and Ipswich. Many clubs have a special rival that you are not allowed to lose too.

Is the Saints, Pompey feud any different to other clubs. Or is our rivalry so intense that you need to be ultra careful where you walk because of your colours?

Can Saints and Pompey fans survive together without the hatred? I would love to think it is possible. I would also like to think that fans could stop digging out their own clubs' supporters because they don't feel the same need to spill blood every five minutes.

Football is a game that is enjoyed worldwide. I hurt when my team loses and rejoice when we win. I get annoyed when my love for my club is questioned by idiots because I speak gently. I don't class myself as odd. Am I normal? Or am I a sad old git who has failed to move with the times?

I still believe it possible for Saints and Pompey fans to co-exist side by side. I can see no reason for the colour of your shirt to dictate how I feel about you as a person.

I will always revel in our victories over Pompey. As I expect them to revel when we lose. Is that so wrong?

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

The Journalist

Writer: SFC Forever Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Sunday April 25 2010

Time: 10:33PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
... Pompey have to survive first!
Report Abuse
25/04/2010 22:37:00

They will survive Matt_Us. In what form nobody knows, but like us last year the fans are ready to step in and start a new club if necessary.
Report Abuse
25/04/2010 22:41:00

I think you're being a bit harsh on most pompey fans, who idn't actually want to see you disapear. i enjoy rivalries, and derbys, and whilst i'm not going to sau i WANT you to be promoted, I would LOVE to play you guys more often.
Report Abuse
25/04/2010 23:27:00

PC I was not having a dig st most of your fans. Merely stating the fact that on several Saints sites plus a couple of yours we were seriously wished the worst outcome possible. In much the same way as we have ours, you do have some strong anti rival fans. Last season we had many posters wishing us ill but I agree that most fans have said the same as yourself. I feel we differ slightly as I do not particularly want to see you drop through the leagues. I would much rather we played each other, year in, year out, in the Premiership. So that will mean we both need to be promoted.
SFC Forever
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25/04/2010 23:51:00

I am also a poster on several sites. I have noticed that we got a lot of abuse from Posters who intimated that they support Pompey. Far more saying things similar to that you have posted but we did get a lot. In the same way you must have seen a lot from our side of the County aimed your way. Most fans on both sides would love to be able to play on a more regular basis. I think that is why he asks the question. I may be wrong but that is how I read it.
Report Abuse
26/04/2010 00:02:00

SFC tbf to us we had plenty of your lot on the VP site pushing for our demise, I recall a "special type" called Daish who with his mates was a bit like a fungoid affliction. Most Pompey long for the return of the Derby's and of course our most memorable game was "Harry the return". It's fair to say south coast footballl has been in some disarray for a while; whilst I want Pompey back in the PL I would also like to see a strong sea gulls team and a bit of a southcoast revival. The financial morass that has afflicted both clubs has changed peoples perception somewhat, and forced a period of reflection so in that thought in mind, I wish you well; just not as well as us!
Report Abuse
26/04/2010 00:51:00

Maybe I should have explained the reason for this article better. As a lot of Pompey posters already know I visit your site regularly. It is because of some of the warped, malevolent and seriously abusive posting I saw there that I have done this. Two or three posters have made an attack on me for fraternising with the enemy and yourselves as the supposed enemy. Your sin being that you wear blue as opposed to our red. Well I am saying now for the idiots to understand. I love my football club and take great pleasure in teaching my children to feel the same. I was disgusted after our derby match when my six year old saw the way some of our yoof attacked, in a cowardly manner, fans in coaches heading back to Pompey. How can I justify such behaviour? I can't.
SFC Forever
Report Abuse
26/04/2010 08:21:00

I long for the derbys to return (whichever division they are in) and I'm a stronger believer that the hated must remain .. that said Russels point about recent reflection on both sides is very true .. lets hoep it doesn't last too long.. OH ! .. I also call for the 3 or 4 scummers who continually aggrivate and annoy Vital Pompey Forums with their (in some instances) vile and unforgiving comments towards subjects such as Madie McCann and Hillsborough victims to show their faces on Vital Saints - Sadly I don't think they will .. as I hope their own fans would disown them ..
Report Abuse
26/04/2010 08:57:00

The year we got promotion you got to the cup final and i may be wrong but i think AFCB did OK too..this year you have enjoyed a your that EMULSIONAL trip to the arch which has put some GLOSS on your season. we how ever have been diddled bya money laundering, Gun running Russian-Isreali financier...but have a cup final coming up and AFCB have got promoted...excellent season for hants and if Aldershot make it in the playoffs...well excellent---mind you after another super 7 by chelski, i am a bit worried
plymouth graham
Report Abuse
26/04/2010 09:13:00

I agree with you there Chix. I have repeatedly asked them to come to what they profess is their club's site. But no they would rather hide behind their desk and remain the mouthy, vitriolic scum we regard them as. As a Saints fan I sit here hoping one day to find out that posters such as Hillsborough4life are not saints fans but just mouthy little pieces of excrement. And what they did/do is far worse than aggrevate or annoy just the Pompey posters. Anybody that saw the posts would have been totally disgusted by them. I am pleasantly surprised that the boys in blue have not reciprocated on this site. Such deplorable behaviour has no possible excuse or justification.
SFC Forever
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26/04/2010 09:51:00

Plymouth Graham I think with a little less of a financial burden you could well have managed to survive this season. The 7 scored by Chelsea were give me's from a beaten side that knew they were going down. I also like to see our teams do well and agree that Aldershot making it a foursome would be marvellous. Oh I smiled at the use of certain words. Thank you. Fans always bear the brunt it seems and that I find totally wrong. Still you do have another trip to Wembley ahead of you. Enjoy.
SFC Forever
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26/04/2010 09:59:00

I agree SFC, rivalry is good, hatred is a very strong word and I would like to think it would not be towards the fans. We all want to beat our rivals and see them lose but I, like the vast majority on VP did not want to see you go out of business last year because it would be you, the fans, who would suffer and not the perpetrators. I would like to see more top flight derbies, more like Everton/Liverpool than Man City/Utd, which are violent in the extreme. Commiserations for missing out on the play-offs, which you earned on the pitch.
Report Abuse
26/04/2010 10:51:00

It is so sad when fans are made to pay for some stupid decisions made by others. You Lemmi sound like so many sound people who love our game for what it is. Good fight back on Saturday that says so much for your club as a whole. I think that the days of standing with my old man next to Pompey fans has long gone. Regulations and all that have stopped it even if we had wanted it. don't see any reason why we can't drink together though if a pub was big enough to give it a go at yours home or ours.
Report Abuse
26/04/2010 11:08:00

stellarnw - I grew up in a city with a very fierce rivalry but there was no nastyness, families were split, your best mate supported the other side, we went to school together and the banter would happen whenever we met up in the pub. We disliked each other's clubs but not each other. After many years in the football wilderness where I didn't give a stuff, I came back to it, to a different club but have made many friends and have got the love back for the game.
Report Abuse
26/04/2010 12:00:00

SFC Forever - i've changed my mind. I do want to see southampton promoted, purely for you :-) (and also the derbys)
Report Abuse
26/04/2010 12:12:00

I have to say thank you twice in one day. Bloody Nora, that does not happen very often. I am one of those that believes more regular meetings would take some of the sting out of the derby's. They would always be very important as bragging rights are always something to enjoy. I am sure I can remember when we had ours but it seems recently that someone keeps getting the score wrong. :-(
SFC Forever
Report Abuse
26/04/2010 12:47:00

in all honesty I can never dream of cheering on the enemy but I would make an exception if they play one of the big 4. Chelsea being one I might be persuaded to applaud when a Chelsea player mucks up.
Report Abuse
26/04/2010 14:51:00

I think it is pretty obvious that the high intensity of the rivalry is due to the fact that we are 2 separate cities, therefore, for the majority of fans, there is not the friendly banter element that exists with Liverpool and Everton for example. And Pompey coming out of the wilderness from absolutely nowhere to join your lot at the top level of English football for the first time in years (I'm pretty sure we had barely registered on your radar for a long time) and actually challenging you. I for one enjoy the the intensity of the rivalry on the pitch and I love how even the loudest and most passionate of supporters can seem to find an extra decibel or two on derby day (at your place in February both sets of supporters produced a truly special atmosphere). It's all about form going out of the window, accepting nothing less than 200% from your players and that uneasy feeling in your stomach when you think about just how unbearable it would be should your team lose. But there is a line. A line that should be drawn well before throwing a brick at someone, because of the colour of their shirt. Despite leaving your stadium in February in a relatively calm fashion, I still managed to come within an inch of having a full can of Stella catching me on the barnet. I really believe that the intensity it is crucial to this unique rivalry, that I enjoy with work colleagues and other Saints fans that I have known down the years, but unfortunately I feel that it will always be blighted by those who allow the euphoria of winning or losing on the pitch to their deadliest rivals to boil over and take it to a different level. I never wanted to see SFC go out of business, admittedly I did not lose any sleep over it, but I didn't want it to go that far. I love the Derby days to much, even if they are few and far between like they have been over recent years. I wonder if we remained in the same league for 10-15 years, if we would learn to tolerate eachother to the point where we don't have to have such terrible scenes every time we come across eachother?
Report Abuse
26/04/2010 17:26:00

Pompey88 I totally agree with so much of that. I do believe that it is the large gaps in games that has done a lot to make them so intense. The nasty element I have no time for but I do enjoy the banter that builds up before a game. Even afterwards if the game was a good one. This year we lost by more than I felt was deserved but the previous game was a disaster. I am hopeful that we can resume hostilities(football wise) in the near future.
SFC Forever
Report Abuse
26/04/2010 17:44:00

This could be bigger news than an Israeli/Palestinian solution!
Report Abuse
26/04/2010 18:12:00

Dad explained Lemmi. Hehe. I would like to see more games like the Pompey one for the atmosphere. I was sad when we lost but like dad says you all get a turn at some time or other. Ours is next.
Report Abuse
26/04/2010 18:22:00

Leave the garbage in the gutter, and let the real fans battle it on song and banter on the terraces, and then walk side by side back to their cars and coaches. as stated in the main article, we all support the troops fighting for freedom, but shouldnt freedom at home mean that hatred shown by some is diluted back to rivalry the way it should be?
Report Abuse
26/04/2010 19:41:00

And that Midge I agree, is exactly how it should be. Many years ago it used to be like that. It would be nice to be able to have a jar or two before and or after a game as in the days of yore.
SFC Forever
Report Abuse
26/04/2010 20:32:00

I am one Pompey fan who didn't want you too go under, the trouble is for every sane Pompey fan there are 2 JCL's who have only supported Pompey for the 7 years we have been in the Premiership. I would love for both of our teams to be in the highest league playing each other twice a season but I fear Southampton will have the last laugh at those Pompey JCL'S.
Report Abuse
26/04/2010 22:58:00

So if we say keep the intensity but also lose the violence we could be most of the way back to where we used to be.
Report Abuse
27/04/2010 11:37:00

I don't hate Pompey but I hate losing to them. Same as said before I always want us to be above them but that is my version of our rivalry. I am sure Pompey fans mostly feel the same.
Report Abuse
27/04/2010 22:10:00

sfc4ghg - That's how it should be, it's only a rivalry of football clubs not people. I used to play rugby for Havant, once when we had a cancelled game Southampton RFC phoned up looking for players and I was happy to go and play for them, I even had to turn out in red and white stripes (well hoops actually) but they were a great bunch of lads even though I was from the wrong side of the county. I know some people can't see beyond the end of their own prejudice (My great grandfather wouldn't have tomato sauce in the house because it was Liverpool's colour) but it doesn't have to be that way. I'd love an FA Cup final between us, that'd put the cat amongst the *****ehawks!
Report Abuse
27/04/2010 22:56:00

This actually isn't Lemmi, it's Mrs. L., otherwise known as Pennymoon. Fipplin' laptop refuses to sign him out and me in! Anyway, I just wanted to add something to this very worthy thread. I am a local girl from Portsmouth, supported the team all my life, but have never had any time for the stupid aspects of the rivalry for a couple of very good reasons: (that is apart from a sense of common decency!) 1. My own mother is a scummer; (no offence intended!), we have laughed about this for years - and when we beat Birmingham to get into the semis, she was out in the street cheering as we walked back to her house after the game! (One of my brothers is a Spurs fan, but there is no accounting for taste!) 2. The other main reason goes back to 1978, when I started my first job. This was at Plessey in Titchfield; I was a clerical trainee. There was a chap there who I got to know who was an amputee, having had the lower half of one his legs removed following an incident on a train. Some so-called So'ton fans had discovered he was from Portsmouth (well, Fareham acually), and chucked him off the train whilst it was travelling... He was remarkably cheerful, bearing no grudges (as far as I could make out) and completely refused to let this one appalling incident ruin his life. I know it was a different age; there were probably so-called Pompey fans that could or would have acted in a similar abominable way. The reason I am telling you all this is to say that we should all take a leaf out of his book; we cannot change the past, we have to live with our actions. We can hoever change how we all act in the future, and I for one am looking forward to the day when we can go back to having our local derbies...and even maybe the odd pint together before the game too!
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27/04/2010 23:37:00

When I was single I used to know a chap that was a blue and if we played away I would stay at his. When we were at home he would stay at ours. He knew where we could drink safely as did I at our respective homes. We lost touch after we both settled and can wholeheartedly agree with all of your post Penny. One of my hopes is for the game to become more family orientated. Cost is something that needs to be addressed but at least I would guess that more girls should equate a softer approach by many fans. Not noise as girls can sing and chant with the best of us. But us men do generally behave better when surrounded by our offspring and partners.wives.
SFC Forever
Report Abuse
28/04/2010 12:35:00

Pennymoon I sometimes have the same trouble with my old man's computor. I have to switch the damn thing off before I can log-in. SFC keeps threatening to buy a new one but so far that is all he has done. We know exactly where you are coming from with the nasties Penny. We have seen some and once a large group of us getting of the train at Waterloo saw a Pompey adorned lad getting a beating. He was rescued by our group who proceeded to give it to the three brave yobs who had started the fighting. Hopefully they learned the error of their way. When the pompey lad was asked where he was going he was actually on his way to meet his girlfriend who was due to meet him at Selhurst Park for our game there. Needless to say he stayed with us for the trip across the smoke. Whether he ever remained with the girl I shall never know but I bet he doesn't travel with the reds in his colours by himself anymore. Not openly anyway. That I find very very sad.
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28/04/2010 12:59:00


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