Pompey: Kyle Bennett’s the host with most at Christmas

Adam McGurk. Picture: Joe Pepler
Adam McGurk. Picture: Joe Pepler
Pompey midfielder Danny Rose. Picture: Joe Pepler

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Kyle Bennett is set to give his Pompey team-mates a taste of Christmas.

But it’s a case of ‘bah humbug’ from Adam McGurk who is turning into Scrooge over the festive period.

Kyle Bennett. Picture: Joe Pepler

Kyle Bennett. Picture: Joe Pepler

As part of our Christmas countdown, we quizzed the Pompey players on their plans for the big day.

Members of the Blues squad are planning a dinner get-together on Friday ahead of the Boxing Day clash with Leyton Orient.

And it’s Bennett who is playing host and feeding the team as they gear up for two games in 48 hours.

Paul Cook’s men are in for training on Christmas morning before travelling to London in the evening for a hotel stopover.

Kyle’s being the chef and they can all play charades and listen to the Queen’s speech!

Adam McGurk

In between, those without families will be piling around Bennett’s to pull crackers and don their Christmas hats.

McGurk won’t be one of those players, though, with his hands full at home.

He said: ‘My family are coming down here for the day.

‘So I’m going to be with them but there are a few people going around Kyle Bennett’s on Christmas Day.

‘The lads who can make it around and haven’t got family will go around there.

‘Kyle’s being the chef and they can all play charades and listen to the Queen’s speech!

‘I’m sure they’ll enjoy themselves.’

The festive season traditionally offers no time for players to indulge with games to focus on.

But that’s of little consequence to McGurk, who admits he is no fan of Christmas.

Since moving into the professional game, the 26-year-old has become accustomed to having to prepare for matches.

McGurk still has to contend with the family demands but, in true Scrooge fashion, he isn’t expecting to indulge in too much Christmas joy – off the pitch anyway.

He said: ‘I’m not really one for Christmas, to be honest.

‘I used to like it when I was younger. It is since I’ve been in football full-time.

‘My missus is always on to me and she loves Christmas.

‘She’s always telling to me to get this tree and this and that Christmas thing.

‘She’s always on about it to me, so I’m always getting hassle at this time of year.

‘A good Christmas dinner with the family is pleasant.

‘But all the presents and rubbish which comes with it isn’t for me. We’re in Christmas morning and we’re travelling Christmas night.

‘That’s how it is. You get on with it.’

Pompey go into the Orient game on an eight-game unbeaten run.

And after beating table-toppers Northampton, building on that form is what’s going to put a smile on McGurk’s face at this time of year.

He said: ‘We’re planning on kicking on and we can’t get distracted. We have to take it bit by bit.

‘The lads are playing well and we’re in good form.

‘We got a good result at Northampton, so now we go into the Leyton Orient game with confidence.

‘It’s no good getting a result like we did at Northampton unless we build on it. It’s about putting a run together.

‘We’ve had a run of wins but we need to keep it going and stay unbeaten. We don’t want to let anyone down.’