Portsmouth FanZoner James Shipp agrees with David Gold that Pompey supporters take some beating!
Fair weather fans not welcome at Fratton Park
West Ham owner David Gold is often very interactive on Twitter. In fact, most days he'll reply to questions from fans about nearly everything, the future of players, injury news and even squad inclusions.
One response earlier in the week though, would have brought a smile to a certain set of supporters, and that's not the diehard following of the Iron.
Gold was asked, beside the Hammers, who are his favourite fans?
His reply was Portsmouth, because, in his own words, "of what they've been through." And he's certainly not wrong there.
After all, this week things continue to look bleak for the south coast side.
Six players left the club on Tuesday, leaving the Blues with a mere 14 at their disposal. That number is only that high because QPR youngster Frankie Sutherland joined on a one-month loan, becoming the fifth teenager in an already minuscule squad.
A further blow to Pompey came in the departure of two key members of staff, goalkeeping coach John Keeley and head of recruitment Luke Dowling, who both left to join former accomplice Michael Appleton at Blackburn. Also, the Blues are desperately seeking a new training ground, as budget cuts mean they can no longer afford to pay for the Eastleigh base they currently use.
No training ground, smallest squad in the Football League, no manager, an ever decreasing amount of staff, and no wins in 14 matches. As Gold says, quite a lot for a fan to endure, but yet, the Fratton faithful endure it in style.
Who knows what team the Blues will have come February 9th. Still, that hasn't put Pompey supporters off snapping up their tickets for the trip to Bournemouth which falls on that day. Upon being given 1,274 tickets, they were sold out within five hours. It's hard to imagine another set of fans doing that, especially given the situation Portsmouth find themselves in.
After all, a loyal Blue won't have seen their team win since October 20th, three months ago. However, they are going to stick it out through thick and thin, and as the saying goes, you've got to experience the bad to really savour the good. There's no telling where these bad times will end at the moment, there could still be more departures before the end of January, and the amount of players available to come in remains to be seen.
Nevertheless, the diehard following will continue to travel up and down the country to support those who wear the Blue. Although things on and off the pitch may continue to deteriorate, the already positive opinions of the fans will only improve. And don't be surprised if more people like Gold go public in their admiration for supporters deserving of a lot more than what they're getting.