Pompey Derby Day Heroes Eleven10.02.17
The quickest route to becoming a Fratton Park legend is to put in a performance against that lot down the road
It may have 4-1 in their own backyard but the result in the FA Cup fifth round tie in 2010 could have been a lot different if not for James’s heroics in the Pompey goal. His three vital saves, all from headers, kept the Blues in the game, and earned him the right (of sorts) to wear his hair like Superman.
In the same game, the Algerian speed merchant left the home team’s lumpen defence for dead as he put on the after burners and helped himself to Pompey’s third goal. Celebrity love rat and squandered football talent Jamie O’Hara added a fourth three minutes later – turning the result from merely a convincing win to a rout.
Arjan De Zeeuw
Everyone’s favourite Dutch footballer turned forensic detective, De Zeeuw arrived at the far post to nod in a Patrik Berger cross in the 17th minute of Pompey’s 4-1 win on that memorable Sunday afternoon in 2005. He also kept that pint-sized goal-hanger Kevin Phillips in his pocket for the full 90 minutes of the game.
When the fresh-faced Ward popped up in the box with a brave late header to snatch a point in the Championship derby in 2011 you could tell by the collective celebrations that it meant a lot to the team. However, by the look on his face it was obvious it meant a whole lot more to the Emsworth-born defender. The stuff his childhood dreams were of.
Loyal servant McCann played a vital role in last Blues side to complete the league double over that lot down the road, back in the 1963/64 season. The home game saw Pompey stroll to a comfy 2-0 victory with goals from Saunders and Lewis. The away leg witnessed the terrier-like McCann snatch the opener in a satisfying 3-2 triumph. By his own admission, it was one of the best performances he’d ever put in for his beloved Fratton Park team.
The moustachioed Whitehead was a Bristol City legend who joined Pompey on a free and stayed on to make 65 league appearances. A capable utility player, he scored two goals for the Blues, and far and away the most significant was in a Div One clash at Fratton Park in 1987 when he bundled in an Ian Baird knockdown to level the scores at two apiece.
The pocket rocket of a midfielder didn’t reach his full potential at Pompey, but one sweet swing of his left foot in the 93rd minute of the Championship game at St Mary’s in the 2011/12 season means he never has to buy a drink in the city again. His spectacular strike evened up a game that looked lost due to the home side’s offside goal in the 90th minute. Chuck had other ideas.
Lomana Lua Lua
There were occasions when the Congolese marksman flattered to deceive in a Pompey shirt, but 2004/05’s south coast derby at Fratton Park wasn’t one of them. His brace of well-taken goals in the 4-1 demolition put the game out of the reach of the soon-to-be-relegated M27 West side. Cue acrobatic back flip.
The prolific inside forward signed for the club in the summer of 1899 and went on to be the club’s top scorer in four out the first five full seasons. He scored on his debut against that lot down the road in a 2-0 friendly win, then repeated the goal-scoring trick in the first ever competitive south coast derby played at the Dell in 1900.
The 2-0 win in 1988 was the Blues’ first league victory at the Dell since 1964. Welshman Barry Horne scored the first and the ever-reliable Connor was in the right place and the right time to notch the second. It was only one of three away games won that season, the others being Spurs and Norwich.
After seeing their burly Nigerian striker spurn several gilt-edged chances the Fratton Faithful were starting to question the ‘Feed the Yak and he will score’ aphorism. Until the 68th minute that is, when he diverted Steve Stone’s cross past the hapless Niemi. It was not only a significant stride in the march to Premiership survival that season (2003-04), it was also the first time Pompey had beaten their rivals at home for 41 years.