Pompey thoroughbreds upped ante over final furlong
Michael Doyle celebrated Pompey's perfectly-timed charge to the title and reflected: We turned up the pressure.
The Blues skipper wallowed in the delight of his team moving to the League Two summit for the first time on the final day.
And Doyle believes his side turned up the heat on promotion rivals Plymouth and Doncaster, who failed to deliver the results to see them pick up the championship.
The Irishman explained he pictured a horse coming strong at the finish as the metaphor for Pompey’s success.
He said: ‘There’s no better way to do it.
‘I was thinking about horses at the Grand National.
‘We were in second place and I thought it was time to come on strong for the final furlong.
‘To be fair, the boys went out and knocked in all the goals.
‘You heard the reaction around the place. I knew that would have the opposite reaction for Doncaster and Plymouth.
‘I knew those teams and their fans would feel that.
‘Those players would feel it. The tension. I knew what those players at Plymouth and Donny would feel. We put the pressure on.
‘I was speaking to Gary Roberts and he was saying you know Plymouth always do it in the last minute.
‘I told him not today, and I was right.
‘Now Pompey fans can go away this summer knowing they’re champions.’
Doyle also saluted the Pompey folk who have saved the club and have guided them through the community era.
With Michael Eisner poised to assume control, the 35-year-old feels the title win is the perfect reward for their efforts.
He said: ‘For me, what a special way for these people to hand over the club.
‘If they go, to do it as champions is unbelievable.
‘The best thing will happen for this club.
‘From what I can see, these people are proper business people this time.
‘They want the best for this club.
‘They’ve got an unbelievable support to come into and this club can grow and grow.’
Doyle also explained how the title win was the first of his career.
And that was something for the ever-present midfielder to savour.
Doyle said: ‘To come to this club towards the end of my career and do this is special.
‘I work hard but I told the younger players to enjoy it.
‘I’ve played nearly 700 games and it’s the first time I’ve been a champion.
‘That’s what you play for. It’s unbelievable.’
– JORDAN CROSS