Worldwide views add to match experience

Pompey boss Guy Whittingham has had his Pompey managerial credentials questioned many times on The News' Pompey Live commentary service Picture: Joe Pepler

Pompey boss Guy Whittingham has had his Pompey managerial credentials questioned many times on The News' Pompey Live commentary service Picture: Joe Pepler

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Have your say

There’s a service we provide on a match day for Pompey.

It’s live on the internet and is often hosted by myself or my esteemed colleague Jordan Cross.

It’s called Pompey Live and no, it didn’t take us very long to come up with that title!

While we try to provide a commentary of what is going on during the game, you can imagine that’s not always the easiest thing to do when you have so many supporters wanting to join in with the fun.

As you hammer away at the keyboard, while trying to keep an eye on a fast-flowing game, you will then field a question about the formation from someone in Manila.

(And yes we do have some Pompey fans who join us from the Philippines.)

Unless you have a typing speed of 1,000 words per minute (and let’s make it very clear, we don’t), it’s impossible to cover every kick of the ball as perhaps a radio commentator can.

So we try to strike a balance between what’s actually happening on the pitch and a bit of good-natured banter among those who take the trouble to join in with us.

At times, we have 1,000 or 2,000 people logging on while the game is being played. Many more also catch up with the replay afterwards.

And in this day and age of mobile technology, some even join us from their smart phones while they are at the ground watching the same game and offer a few thoughts as to what’s going on.

Just as a manager will tell you, it’s a results-based business. You could use that same philosophy on how you assess the enjoyment of those who join the forum.

Sometimes people just want to vent their frustrations if Pompey are losing, or share their delight of victory with like-minded folk.

Others just want to feel a part of a match day as much as they can from the other side of the globe and will gleefully set an alarm clock for 2am and get up in the middle of the night to stay in touch.

Often, our regular contributors will offer something genuinely insightful or pose a question that is well worthy of discussion.

Even if they can’t make the games for geographical, financial or other reasons, they know their stuff and you’d be surprised at how closely ex-pats in Ohio, Russia, Australia or Paulsgrove stay in touch with the goings on at Fratton Park.

Once a Pompey fan, always a Pompey fan – regardless of where you now live.

While we have the informed or even the less-informed with a valid opinion, on other occasions, a view is expressed that is frankly total nonsense that would otherwise be dismissed as the ramblings of a lunatic.

Admittedly, opinions in football are weird and wonderful. They can be diverse and they can be a polar opposite to your own beliefs.

While one person thinks a certain player is a world-beater, another believes he is a panel-beater.

But just as you see them in every other walk of life, there are folk who just get a bit uppity quite quickly.

Of course, you also get those on the wind-up.

Some of them are rival fans from down the road who clearly have nothing better to do.

Understandable, I suppose.

After all, why would they want to stay in touch with their own team...

Then again, others just fancy having a go for the sake of trying to get a reaction.

We’re not quite inundated by trolls.

It’s just one of the minor downsides of interactive social media, and if someone gets a kick out of questioning my parentage or assessing my ability to do my job, who am I to deny them that pleasure?

After all, everyone is welcome on our forum.

But it is those who vehemently call for Guy Whittingham’s head on a plate who remain an inflammatory problem.

And when someone who is thousands of miles away is convinced ‘the manager has clearly lost the dressing room’ or ‘doesn’t know how to use substitutions’ based on a game they can’t see, you have to question the validity of those opinions.

Just as every discussion on a national radio phone-in often surrounds who should be sacked, even some Pompey fans want the quick fix, rather than to give someone time to rebuild a club.

They see Pompey in League Two and feel they shouldn’t be in the basement division.

They are right. But the problems of the past are not fixed overnight.

In recent times, the calls for the change of manager have died down.

Of course, the next time Pompey slump to defeat, those calls will become louder again. It comes with the territory.

Whittingham knows there is expectation at Pompey now when, previously, having a team out at all was a bonus.

But steady progress is not enough for some. They want promotion and they want it yesterday.

Yes, opinions are opinions but some are clearly better than others.

Next time you can’t make a match or even if you are there and you’ve got your phone with you, join us and get involved with the discussion via portsmouth.co.uk.

If nothing else, it livens up a 0-0 draw.

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