Portsmouth kitman Kev McCormack: We drive each other mad - but I love Barry Harris to bits

Pompey’s resident double act have served under 18 permanent managers.

Saturday, 24th August 2019, 12:00 pm
Barry Harris' dressing-room double act with Kev McCormack has been a Pompey institution for two decades. Picture: Joe Pepler

No wonder odd couple Kev McCormack and Barry Harris are considered the bedrock of the Blues’ dressing room.

Harris has been associated with Fratton Park since 1952, serving as a mascot, Pompey sailor, physio and then assisting in kit duties.

The arrival of McCormack in the summer of 1999 then forged a new changing-room partnership – and they have bickered ever since.

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Barry Harry celebrates with Gareth Evans (left) and Christian Burgess (right) at Pompey's League Two title-winning celebrations on Southsea Common in May 2017. Picture: Joe Pepler

Yet the deep bond between the pair remains strong, establishing themselves as essential components of the Blues’ backroom for the last two decades.

And it’s a touching friendship which McCormack treasures.

He said: ‘Bazza is the club, isn’t he.

‘He's also been lucky to all the games, but it’s his life, Portsmouth is his life, and he’s a gentleman. I love him to bits.

‘He loves Portsmouth and loves his stats – I know most of them now after 20 years driving up and down the country with him! And he’s always got his Buckwells sausage sandwiches on those journeys.

‘He’s a lovely bloke. He is as deaf as a post and as blind as a bat, but that’s Baz isn’t it.

‘We share a room together on away trips, I know every stat in the world, even if I don’t want to know!

‘Baz can ask you your birthday and tell you who Pompey played that day and what the score was.

‘The day he retires will be a sad day because he has been there so long.’

Not that the pair don’t have their disagreements, working in such close proximity.

McCormack added: ‘When you work with people every single day you are going to fall out with them, it's natural. As long as people don’t take it personally, it’s okay.

‘I think the world of Baz and his wife Sue. Yes, he can drive you mad, but he’s harmless, he’s a lovely man who loves his football, that’s his life.

‘If anything happened to him it would break my heart. As much as he drives me mad at times – and I probably drive him mad – being around the place is his life.’