Why new boy knows Pompey is OURS

HE SAW what it meant for Pompey to be OURS.

Monday, 6th June 2016, 7:00 am
Danny Rose, front, receives treatment from Oxfords physio after being on the receiving end of Johnny Ertls elbow in Pompey's 2013-14 League Two opening-day 4-1 loss Picture: Joe Pepler

Now it’s a passion Danny Rose is champing at the bit to share after completing his move to Fratton Park.

And securing that long-awaited route out of League Two at the fourth attempt is the gift he intends to deliver to his new club’s fans.

The taste of the celebratory champagne still lingers with the midfielder following his recent title-winning success with Northampton.

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Rose has promised to put that experience to good use as he starts out at his new home next term.

The 28-year-old took on the role of pantomime villain as he helped spoil the start of the first full season as a community-owned club.

The day was supposed to mark the start of an exciting new era in style after Pompey had won their fight for survival.

It was a very different story, though, with Rose in Oxford United’s colours as they ran out 4-1 winners after Johnny Ertl was sent off after an hour.

In fact, it was the Bristol-born talent who was left feeling the impact of an unintentional elbow from the Blues skipper.

That sent a day which was supposed to be savoured into a tailspin of frustration, which, in many ways, has now continued for three seasons.

The elbow left its imprint on Rose, but the occasion also made an indelible mark.

‘Yes, the elbow was on me!,’ reflected Rose, as he remembered the first game of that campaign.

‘That was my first game for Oxford after joining them.

‘It was another sold-out crowd at Portsmouth and I remember seeing the ‘OURS’ go up in the big stand.

‘It was a special atmosphere.

‘I played at Pompey twice now and I’ve won twice.

‘So I’ve got a good personal record at Fratton Park and hope that continues when I’m in a blue shirt.’

Rose has chosen the option of making Pompey his new home instead of continuing his voyage with Northampton in the third tier.

He turned down the offer of a new deal with the Cobblers to link up with Paul Cook’s men for campaign ahead.

The aim is to replicate what was achieved at Sixfields last term, with Chris Wilder’s side surprising many by romping to the championship.

They achieved that by a 13-point margin, with much of that to do with a sensational 24-match unbeaten run after Cook’s side had beaten them 2-1 in December.

That stretched the entirety of the second half of the campaign. Now Rose is hoping to make the knowledge gained in that time count at his new home.

Rose: ‘Promotion has to be the aim for us.

‘Everyone will say, at the start of the season, promotion is the goal.

‘I’d like to think I’ve got some good experience and know a little bit about what it takes to do it.

‘I’ve experienced it and played a bit of a role with Northampton this season. Hopefully, I can bring that to the squad.

‘There are players here who’ve done the same, and, when you have that, it bodes well for the future.

‘That can only be good for the club.’

Rose carried out his due diligence on Pompey before committing his future to the club.

Plenty of the advice about the move came from an obvious source but some also from a more leftfield place.

His Northampton team-mate, Ricky Holmes, was used as a sounding board and asked about his time at PO4.

But a chance meeting with Ben Close on holiday provided an unexpected opportunity to gain more information.

Rose explained there won’t be too many new team-mates he knows particularly well when he links up with Pompey in pre-season, though.

He said: ‘I’ve not played with any of the players before, but they’ve got great experience of this level and achieving promotion.

‘I played against a lot of the players here.

‘It’s quite rare that you don’t come across or know people at clubs at this level of football, because there’s quite a lot of moving around, though.

‘I actually bumped into Ben Close on holiday a few days ago in Greece.

‘We had a bit of a chat about the game we played against each other.

‘We spoke about that game and also the play-offs and how that went down.’

Holmes naturally attempted to get Rose to remain at Northampton for the new campaign, when their conversation took place.

But when it became apparent he was leaning to a move to new pastures he was given a ringing endorsement of what lies in wait at Pompey.

And that gave him the extra assurance it was a move which was going to be the right one for him.

Rose said: ‘It was clear Ricky looks back at his time at Portsmouth with good memories.

‘He assured me I was joining a fantastic club, even if he wanted me to stay with him at Northampton.

‘He assured me I was making a decision that was right, and he told me it was a good one.’