Meltdown won’t drive Pompey boss away

Pompey manager Michael Appleton during training yesterday Picture: Robin Jones
Pompey manager Michael Appleton during training yesterday Picture: Robin Jones
Matty Kennedy. Picture: Joe Pepler

Pompey 1 Southend 0: They said what

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Michael Appleton faced up to administration and vowed: I won’t walk away from Pompey.

The Blues boss promised he wouldn’t quit Fratton Park despite the club again standing on the brink.

The News understands debenture holder Balram Chainrai is close to putting Pompey into administration for the second time in less than two years.

Appleton is preparing for a points loss as a result which would plunge the club into a grim fight for Championship survival.

The threat of losing his top players would also become a reality, with the emergency loan window now open.

But the 36-year-old has underlined his commitment to a proud club again in a dire battle for survival.

Appleton yesterday held a meeting with his squad as the Blues prepare for administration.

The fired-up Appleton promised Pompey would compete to the bitter end for their place in the division.

He insisted he would not turn his back on the club, though, if the worst was to happen.

Appleton said: ‘I wouldn’t be doing my job properly if I wasn’t (ready for a points deduction).

‘I’ve got to be aware of it and make the players aware of it. They aren’t stupid.

‘At the end of the day I won’t beat around the bush with anyone. I will give it 100 per cent every day, though, because that’s what I’m about. Until someone tells me differently I’ll do that.

‘Even if they take the points off and we go into administration, I guarantee it’ll go until the last minute of the last game.

‘We are going to fight to make sure that happens.

‘Now I’ve had a taste of management I don’t want to be a League One manager.

‘If I have to be, then fine, but, as far as I’m concerned, I don’t want to let the opportunity go without the biggest fight ever.

‘It’s easy talking but I want to show that. Hopefully I’m doing that anyway.

‘If Michael Appleton left Portsmouth it would only be to really, really take my career to the next level as a manager.

‘I don’t see any reason to. The grass isn’t always greener.

‘The job in front of me when I arrived is different to now but I’m not bemoaning the situation. I have to deal with it.

‘I did take the job in different circumstances, but it’s only going to make me stronger.

‘Until I get an unbelievable, fantastic opportunity, I’m here for the long run.’

Appleton admitted he was now at a stage where he is desperate to know Pompey’s fate – even if the news is they are again in administration.

A points loss would then become inevitable – with the Blues manager hopeful the Football League would not hit them with anything stiffer than a 10-point deduction.

Appleton said: ‘If it happens I have a plan in place to deal with it, as and when it happens.

‘We were in administration in the Premier League last time, so it probably would be 10 points.

‘I don’t want to comment on that too much, though, in case it isn’t.

‘All I know is the clock’s ticking and a bill needs to be paid.

‘Everyone has got to a point where, one way or another, they want something sorted.

‘If it’s the worse-case scenario we’ll deal with it as best we possibly can.

‘But if there is someone out there who genuinely, genuinely can take this club forward, please do it quickly.’