Pompey are integral to this city.
It’s quite right that we should have included them as part of our Passion for Portsmouth series because whether you are a football fan or not, Pompey are a major influence.
The club shapes our mood and can create a feelgood factor like no other.
Owners may come and owners may go – and as we report today, new men may soon be at the helm at Fratton – but Pompey are more than just a business.
The extent of this club’s involvement in the wider community means they touch many lives. Pompey aren’t just about football. They’re about children’s literacy, adult employment schemes and encouraging people to look after their health.
Anybody who still doubts that only has to look at today’s Agenda spread and then turn a few more pages to see the latest story we feature about Blue Day.
That particular charity day – combining as it does our love for Pompey with the chance to raise money for the Tom Prince Cancer Trust – is truly an amazing cause for celebration.
Each new season is approached with optimism and that is also something we should feel proud about. Perhaps it’s fair to say our optimism wasn’t as high as usual as this season approached. The club had just been relegated from the Premiership and was embroiled in some fairly traumatic off-pitch events.
But Pompey have met those challenges head on, throughout all the ups and downs they’ve endured this season. And as always, the support for the club has never wavered. That’s something manager Steve Cotterill acknowledged at this week’s News Sports Awards when he spoke about the passion fans have for this club.
This weekend Portsmouth are at home and if they are to reach the play-offs they must set out to win all of their remaining matches.
There are those who will doubt that can happen, just as much as there are those who were convinced it was a possibility right from the start of the season.
By the end of the season we hope Pompey have proved the rest of football wrong and that the feel good factor lives on.