Pompey Launch Pad Eleven

Pompey Launch Pad Eleven

As strange as it may seem but a move away from Fratton Park can sometimes be a stepping stone to better things


Asimir Begovic

The Bosnian keeper only stood between the sticks on 17 outings for Pompey, but his stop-stopping ability was quickly apparent. He was swiftly moved on to the Potteries for £3.25m in 2010 before decamping to Chelsea (then Stoke, then Bournemouth). His finest moment came when he scored against Southampton with a downfield punt 13 seconds after kick-off.

Joel Ward

There was a time when joining Palace from Pompey wouldn’t have been regarded as a step up, but that was then. Since his departure the Emsworth-born Ward has become a fixture for the Eagles, and holds the club record for the most appearances in the Premier League by any Palace player. Saying that, he has been warming the bench most of this season. Perhaps he should come home soon.

Steve Foster

After leaving Fratton Park in 1979 the perma-permed Foster went on to attain cult hero status at both Brighton and Luton for his granite-like performances at the back. Not only that but the curly-locked stopper also won three caps for England and was part of the 1982 World Cup squad. 

John Beresford

The tippy-toed Beresford was part of Jim Smith’s FA Cup semi-final side and was one of many who scuffed a pen in the shoot out. The attack-minded full-back then joined Newcastle where he thrived in Keegan’s swashbuckling, not quite all-conquering side of the mid-Nineties.

Matt Ritchie

Just how Gosport-born Matt Ritchie was allowed to leave the club that he supported as boy after just seven appearances is a mystery worthy of the nib of Pompey goalie cum novelist Arthur Conan Doyle. Our loss has been Swindon, Bournemouth and Newcastle's gain.

Neil Webb

The Reading-born midfielder joined Pompey for a bargain £87,500 in 1982 from his hometown club and his class on the ball was evident from the start. Three seasons later and the club was unable to resist the £250,000 offered by Brian Clough’s Nottingham Forest. Webb went on to play under Fergie at United and make 26 appearances for his country. After hanging up his boots he became a postman.

Lassana Diarra

The talented French ball-winner failed to settle at Chelsea and Arsenal and found a welcoming albeit temporary home at Fratton Park in 2008. Anyone who saw his ultra-dynamic displays in Pompey’s victorious FA Cup run knew that the big boys would eventually come calling, and they did in the considerable form of Real Madrid. Currently at PSG but is considering his future in the game. If he wants to come back to the park and partner up with Tom Naylor then he's welcome.

Darren Anderton

The leggy right winger came through the youth ranks at Pompey and was a regular in Jim Smith’s young, attacking side of the early nineties. A relatively big money move (£1.75m) saw Anderton join Spurs in 1992. He went on to play for England on 30 occasions, scoring a belter in the 1998 World Cup against Colombia.

Kevin Prince-Boateng 

On his day the Boateng can be a world-beater, on other days you'd barely know he was on the pitch. After joining the Blues from Tottenham the Fratton Faithful witnessed flashes of his mercurial genius. He converted a pen in the FA semi-final win against Spurs but then fluffed the same opportunity in the final against Chelsea (a game which also saw him commit an horrendous tackle on Michael Ballack). From Pompey he moved on to AC Milan and has also turned out for Shalke 04, Eintracht Frankfurt and Las Palmas, before securing a loan move to Barcelona. 

Ray Crawford

Pompey-boy Crawford’s knack for notching goals helped him to become a club legend and claim a couple of England caps while he was at it. Sadly, only 19 of the 300 plus he notched at club level were for his hometown club, as he was inexplicably off-loaded to Ipswich Town before his potential for putting the ball in the back of the net was fully realised.

Mark Hateley

The marauding forward bagged 22 goals in 38 appearances in the single season he played for the Blues including back-to-back hat-tricks against Grimsby and Cambridge. An England call up produced a trademark header in the Maracana against Brazil, next thing Hateley was off to AC Milan in a £1m deal.