Public Enemy Number 2?

By Jim Bonner
Last updated : 18 October 2007
It is written in every Pompey fan's DNA - "Thou must hate Southampton Football Club" and it's blindingly obvious that our neighbours down the road are the scorn of every true blue.

However, without regular fixtures against the unfortunates in red and white we are left without any sort of rival in the Premier League. Brighton and Millwall are stuck in League One whilst Milan Mandaric's takeover at Leicester has sweetened the bitterness towards our old bogey team somewhat.

So I ask - "Who are Pompey's most disliked team in the Premier League?"

Two seasons ago I compiled a poll that asked who Pompey fans hated most bar Southampton. Birmingham City topped that poll because we were in a head-to-head relegation battle with them at the time. I doubt the feelings of disdain towards Steve Bruce's men would be anywhere near as strong this season because we are clearly in a position of superiority.

If I asked the question last season, I think the title would have belonged to either one of two teams.

Manchester City didn't endear themselves to Pompey fans because of the actions of thugs Ben Thatcher and Joey Barton. However, both Thatcher and Barton have now left the club and fans are starting to find a new found respect for the current City regime with Sven at the helm and the team playing good football.

The other candidates were Watford simply because of the awful brand of "football" they played, which resulted in a dire match at Fratton Park and an even worse result at Vicarage Road. They were eventually relegated and so can't be selected for this season's dubious honour.

So who would take this year's crown as the Premier League team that most Pompey fans dislike?

I'm not going to judge any team based on their fans as the majority of proper football fans I have spoken to have been great to talk to and I don't want to group them with some of the numpties that occasionally visit the messageboard as well as the other idiots.

Instead I'll give some suggestions as to who it could be due to the team itself although you, the reader, will have the final vote.

I know there are plenty of Pompey fans who dislike a couple of clubs in the North West, namely Blackburn Rovers and Bolton Wanderers.

The former have given us grief in past encounters, living up to their "bully boys" tag and having such charming players like Robbie Savage, Andy Todd and Paul Dickov grace their side.

Until this season, Bolton have played an attritional style of football that isn't great to watch, play at a "cheesy" football ground and worst of all, they've got El Hadji Diouf in their side too.

Maybe you're a younger generation fan and have had to put up with your glory hunting mates who have attached their flags to Manchester United, Arsenal or Chelsea. Liverpool can also be included in that bracket, although the reasons may lie deeper than that because of that painful FA Cup Semi in 1992.

Perhaps the actions of Thatcher and Barton still mean that City are you most disliked club or perhaps the comments of Birmingham's board two seasons ago are still firm in the mind.

Reading are now considered our "local" rivals and the banter between the two sets of fans would suggest a teensy-weensy hint of a "rivalry" with them because of the Geographic location. The same could be said for Newcastle who are at the opposite ends of the spectrum. They're miles away, play at a ground we always play badly on and have added Joey Barton to their ranks.

If you prefer to dislike a team purely for on-the-pitch matters then jammy Everton can't be too far from your mind and neither can Tottenham Hotspur because we always fall foul of bad luck at White Hart Lane.

Fulham also have a bigger Scummer contingent than anyone else in the Premier League although West Ham come close (and they have Quashie!).

Ultimately, it's up to you to decide who Pompey's most disliked team in the league are, for whatever reason. So take your pick by voting on the poll on the bottom right of the main page.

Unfortunately, the poll will only allow me to include 14 options and so I've had to omit the five teams I believe are last likely to be voted for. The means Aston Villa, Derby County, Middlesbrough, Sunderland and Wigan will not be included.

Happy Voting!

Portsmouth Match Reports

Sky Bet League One Tue 17th October 19:45

Doncaster Rovers - - - Portsmouth

Last game - Match Centre


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