Deadline day antics are always a joy

Benjani was the subject of deadline day drama back in 2008. Picture: Michael Jones
Benjani was the subject of deadline day drama back in 2008. Picture: Michael Jones

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I have to admit I do quite like transfer deadline days.

Maybe it’s the masochist in me but there’s something uniquely enjoyable about the hours counting down to the window slamming shut.

It can be a world of transfer tittle-tattle bedlam or just as easily a snooze-inducing test of endurance up to the 11pm cut-off.

Perhaps the appeal of the whole day is in not knowing what’s around the corner.

Previous deadline days have thrown up some crackers for those covering and following the fortunes of Pompey.

How about Benjani falling asleep at Southampton airport and missing two flights as he was about to complete a move to Manchester City three years ago?

That put a spanner or two in the works of Jermain Defoe signing for Pompey, as the deal went beyond the then midnight deadline.

Oh yes, did I not mention that the deadline isn’t really the deadline?

Despite the Sky Sports hysteria as they cut live to Big Ben, we’ve seen paperwork not registered in time and deals still completed – as in the case of the Benjani/Defoe saga.

Modern media has taken coverage of the deadline day to another level but not always for the better.

There’s the Sky Sports reporter who stationed himself in the studio with an array of mobile phones, to create the impression his finger was on the pulse.

Just that the phones were little more than props collected before he went on air.

Or take his colleague who was stationed outside Pompey’s Eastleigh training base last year.

A ‘will he, won’t he?’ saga was developing over David James with talk of an exit to Stoke or Liverpool on the cards.

The reporter, no doubt under pressure to create an impression of developments, turned to faithful ol’ training ground steward Roger Macfarlane for assistance.

Now Rog is a top man but the fact he was the source the reporter was reliant on for titbits may have raised a few eyebrows.

But then the dramatic moment arrived as Jamo whizzed past the reporter and his cameraman.

The reporter breathlessly relayed this news to the studio with the suggestion a move was accelerating.

The reality, however, was the keeper was picking his son up from the nearby train station.

At Hilsea Towers a live transfer blog is now a staple part of our deadline-day diet.

Duties will be shared around reporters this year, meaning I should be able to avoid the 10-hour stint I did a couple of years back.

Relaying the info we have garnered, of course, is what our job is all about.

But there was only so many times you could say Angelos Charisteas/Asamoah Gyan/Darjo Srna isn’t coming down the Park.

The Twitter revolution has added another edge to proceedings, so we will be able to report developments instantly from wherever we are dispatched throughout the day.

Our good friends at Pompey’s media department did just that last year when they tweeted news of my car breaking down outside Fratton Park to the world.

That followed on from the window Steve Cotterill described as his ‘worst day at Pompey’ a year ago, as Balram Chainrai and Levi Kushnir tried to sell anything that wasn’t nailed down.

The signs are movement will be at a minimum today with the club ensconced in their training camp in Spain.

But we’ll be looking forward to keeping you up to speed with developments (or lack of) across our various platforms.