Meddling Doctor?

Last updated : 04 June 2009 By Jim Bonner
There was one particular quote in an interview with Sulaiman Al Fahim that The News printed today which raised my eyebrow more than just a tad.

It was this one: "I am interested in one UAE player who is very talented."

This suggests to me that our prospective new owner might like to get involved with team affairs more than most fans would want him to. He might want this player to make it easier to market Portsmouth to a Middle Eastern fanbase but hiring players should be the manager's job and the last thing I want is our new owner to be buying players for the club that the manager doesn't want.

Now I don't know anything about Arab footballers and I can't speculate about which player Al Fahim is talking about but I think it is fair to assess that the Middle East isn't exactly a hotbed for football talent and everyone would question whether this player is anywhere near good enough to play in the toughest league in the world.

But that is just a side issue. My main concern is that our prospective new owner would want to meddle with team affairs which would ultimately lead to boardroom squabbles, players being unsettled, staff being alienated and general chaos.

The good doctor's frequent media appearances remind me a lot of Milan Mandaric. "Mad Mandy" was forever doing interviews and they weren't always for the good of the club with some of the stuff he came out with.

Nonetheless, it was a small price to pay for the man who saved our club and funded a promotion to the Premier League before selling on to an owner who delivered the FA Cup.

So would it really be such a bad thing if Al Fahim does have a say in team matters if he delivers what he promises? I'd happily accept a "talented" UAE player at the club if it got the new stadium built and brought some much needed stability to Portsmouth.

Given how much Al Fahim seems to enjoy the media spotlight I think we'll hear and read many interviews in the near future and hopefully they won't be as cringeworthy as some of Mandaric's were. It'll never be boring with Al Fahim as the new chairman, that's for sure!

As long as the doctor delivers then he won't get any complaints from me and if he can have even half as much of an impact on the club as Mandaric did then we'll all be very grateful.