Optimistic fans sound a battle-cry to Pack the Park

SPIRIT A Portsmouth fan arrives for the league game at Oakwell against Barnsley last weekend
SPIRIT A Portsmouth fan arrives for the league game at Oakwell against Barnsley last weekend
Luke Leahy is congratulated for his opener Picture: Joe Pepler

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FANS groups have urged supporters to Pack the Park and get behind the team and the club’s new administrator.

As Trevor Birch tries to find the money to keep Pompey afloat while in administration, fans have said the best way to help is turn up to Saturday’s match against Leeds at Fratton Park.

Yesterday members of the Pompey Supporters Trust also had a meeting with Portsmouth North MP Penny Mordaunt in Westminster as part of their efforts to organise a fan buy-out of the club.

Spokesman Scott Mclachlan said despite the recent redundancies at the club – which saw chief executive David Lampitt stand down – the trust was dedicated to supporting the team and the administrator.

He said: ‘It is vitally important that as many fans as possible come to the remaining nine home games.

‘Every Pompey fan knows that many at Portsmouth FC have worked there under very difficult circumstances in the last two years and the trust would like to pay tribute to them for their loyalty and dedication during very trying times, especially those who have recently lost their jobs and livelihood.

‘We wish both Trevor Birch and Michael Appleton the best of luck in their aims this season and they know they can rely on the support of the trust and Pompey fans.’

Following a fans’ forum meeting on Wednesday evening Bill Gillon from Pompey Online said he had been reassured by speaking to Mr Birch.

He said: ‘Now that we have an administrator who wants to do things the right way, let’s hope the fans get behind the team.

‘We can do this together if we all give them our support.

‘The days of not trusting the people running the club are thankfully behind us.

‘In Trevor Birch we seem to have someone who is being straight with fans about the situation.

‘That should give the fans who were worried about putting their money into the club before reassurance that this time things could be different.’

Bob Beech from SOS Pompey said: ‘There is a feeling from everyone I talk to that what is of paramount importance is that people turn up on the day.

‘If we want to save this club then we have to get out and watch them.

‘There is a lot of cynicism in this town towards the football club so they really need to go on a massive charm offensive.’

Portsmouth South MP Mike Hancock said: ‘Now that the club is in the hands of Trevor Birch, I’m optimistic that he will give us some good news.

‘I was heartened to hear what he had to say and think he will come good for us.

‘Everyone in the city should be working together to see what they can do for the club.

‘But we’ll just have to wait and see what happens now.

‘If the club is going to survive, it has to be more transparent and open and honest with the fans. They deserve that after all this.’