Admit it, Could you really live without your local rivals?By: Rob | February 11th, 2010
It isn’t a good time to be a Portsmouth fan. Sitting at the foot of the table, and needing a miracle to escape, they could have less than a week left as a football club. They can avoid ceasing to be, by becoming the first Premier League club ever to go into administration – a move that would almost certainly guarantee relegation, with the subsequent 10 point fine, and would far from secure the future of the club.
At the weekend, they face their local rivals, Southampton (Who aren’t exactly free of money troubles themselves). How odd that the last game they ever play could be against their local rivals?
But no-one wants to see that. Not even, dare I say, Southampton fans. They might loathe Portsmouth like any self respecting football fan loathes his rivals, but they would surely miss them if they were gone (and vice versa)
Like any other football fan, I hate the team down the road from my own. I smile when they lose, I love it when they get stuffed, and enjoy their hard times as much as the good times of my own team, almost.
But I’d hate to see them go under. The lack of banter and rivalry, The lack of a team to actively dislike, it’d drive me crazy. Football is all about pinning your colours to a mast, in a friendly nice way of course, and then following them through thin and thinner. Part of that is naturally disliking the team down the road. But you surely wouldn’t want any real harm to come to them?
In Southampton’s case, they know how it feels to brush with insolvency. What would be really nice is if this cup game at the weekend, plays out with a nice rivalry, a cracking match, and good support for both sides. Hopefully it won’t be the last we see of Portsmouth – but so odd that just a couple of years ago, they were lifting this trophy, now they face a very uncertain future as they approach a game in it.