Fans cautious but optimistic with prospect of new owners

Fans at the Pompey v Derby game
Fans at the Pompey v Derby game
Pompey Academy's Leon Maloney scored an equaliser in their match against Forest Green. Picture: Ian Hargreaves

Pompey Academy lose after conceding late

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POMPEY fans can be forgiven for not leaping up out of their seats at the news of yet more businessmen interested in the club.

But there is a sense of cautious optimism in the air that the club may finally be in the hands of someone who actually wants to own it.

Pompey fan John Westwood said: ‘I don’t care who they are as long as they’ve got credibility. Just because they’re Russian, that doesn’t mean anything, as long as they’re transparent, they pass a fit and proper persons test and have the needs of Portsmouth Football Club at heart.

‘It doesn’t even matter if they’re multi-millionaires or not. As long as they embrace the city and the people of the city.

‘But I won’t believe anything until it’s signed, sealed and the ink’s dried on the paper because as Pompey fans we’ve been through this countless times.’

Season ticket holder Ken Malley said: ‘After all we’ve been through over the previous years, I think most Portsmouth fans will be cautious to say the least. But we’ve got to be prepared to look at people and give them a chance.

‘The thing I most want to see is an owner who comes in and is transparent and open with the supporters. We need someone who is going to talk to us.’

Bob Beech, who is chairman of the SOS Pompey group which staged a protest against owner Balram Chainrai before last weekend’s home match against Derby County, said: ‘The way things have gone for us over the years, we’ve got every right to be sceptical about it, so I’ll believe it when I see it. But anyone that is willing to invest money in the club will be welcomed.’

Fan Colin Farmery said: ‘An investor who is looking at the long term will be able to see there is so much potential in Pompey. There’s a new stadium to be built and Portsmouth is a city that can easily sustain a Premier League side.’