Danny East: Josh Passley didn’t turn up for a game - but it was me who never played for Portsmouth again

Danny East has revealed how Josh Passley’s poor timekeeping signalled the end of his own Fratton Park career.

Tuesday, 26th May 2020, 7:30 am
Josh Passley's poor timekeeping meant a costly shock recall for Danny East against Shrewsbury in March 2015. Picture: Joe Pepler

East had been recalled from a loan spell at Aldershot to feature in three successive Pompey matches under Andy Awford in March 2015.

However, he was subsequently dropped from the squad for the visit of Shrewsbury, with Fulham loanee Passley preferred at right wing-back.

The decision infuriated East, whose mood not calmed when Passley’s match-day no show meant he was then promoted to the side against the Shrews.

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It later emerged Passley had been sent home after turning up 25 minutes late.

As for East, his lack of preparation for the match proved costly. He damaged a hamstring and never played for the club again.

East told The News: ‘Josh Passley was a bit of a cannon wasn’t he. There were occasions when he didn’t turn up on time.

‘After being recalled from Aldershot, I played against AFC Wimbledon and had a really good game and then, on the Friday, Awfs put the team up and I wasn’t in it. Not even in the squad. It was Passley.

‘The loan window had just closed for the season and I had been brought back only not to play. I wasn’t happy with the gaffer, we had a massive fall out. He was quite rude to me.

‘As I wasn’t in the squad, I still went to Fratton Park that Saturday and was about to do the rounds to meet and greet people. Then I got the shout: “Easty, the gaffer wants you in the office”.

‘So I walked in and Awfs was like “Easty” and went to give me a big high five. I thought “What are you doing?”.

‘He replied: “Isn’t football a weird game, you’re starting”. I discovered that Passley hadn’t turned up.

‘I wish I had turned around and said “No”. I realise that’s an unprofessional thing to do, but I hadn’t prepared at all. I wasn’t even supposed to be in the squad.

‘I ran into the changing room and quickly got changed. People were asking what was going on, it was embarrassing.

‘I went into the physio room and said to Sean Duggan: “I’ve not eaten a thing, I need some carbs or food or something”.

‘I had not eaten anything. The previous night I had an omelette for my tea, only eggs, mushrooms, onions and peppers, no cheese. It was designed to keep the calories down and get protein in.

‘On the Saturday morning, all I’d had was black coffee. Then this kid was so unprofessional and didn’t even turn up for the game – so I was thrown in and pulled my hamstring.

‘And never played for Pompey again because my contract was up.’

In the aftermath, Pompey revealed it was Passley’s third instance of bad timekeeping and he was subsequently punished.

The youngster then earned a recall in place of the injured East for the following weekend’s trip to Carlisle.

Passley totalled 12 appearances for the Blues, although his own campaign was cut short after suffering concussion at Morecambe in Awford’s final match as boss.

He is currently with National League side Dover, where he was a regular before football’s suspension.

East, who left Pompey in the summer of 2015 at the end of his contract, added: ‘From the outside, it looked like I was injured again, but I hadn’t prepared to play.

‘You learn from that, I should have prepared anyway, you never know, someone might get ill. On this occasion the doughnut decided he didn’t fancy it.

‘I didn’t really see much of Passley at Pompey as I was out on loan for some of his time. He was everything I didn’t stand for and him doing that killed me.

‘It's unprofessional. I don’t know about his personal life, everyone has a story, and obviously I didn’t feel anything towards him because I don’t know him.

‘But, for me, that was unprofessional.’

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