Pompey History Men Eleven02.09.17
Julius Caesar. Joan of Arc. The Duke of Wellington. They all made history. And so, of sorts, did these men
The Legend is in the record books for the most appearances for a single club by a goalkeeper, having stood between the sticks for 801 games between 1973 and 2000. He’s also the only player to appear for the club in four different decades. We’d need it confirming, but he just might be the Blues’ youngest keeper as well, with the evergreen Dave Beasant pipping him as the eldest.
At 16 years and 161 days fledgling left-back Joe Hancott beat Gary O’Neil’s previous record as the club’s youngest debutant. His appearance against Fulham under-21s in the Checkatrade Trophy meant the first-year trainee from the Isle of Wight instantly became part of the club’s history; the same couldn’t be said about the attendance figure.
At the end of the 1948/49 season the inspirational captain became the first Blue to lift the Championship trophy, an historic occasion made all the more momentous by the fact that Reg was one of our own. The hometown boy left his office job at Danish Bacon on Goldsmith Avenue to join the club at 17.
The Manchester-born Radcliffe only played 14 games for the Blues, as his Fratton Park career was curtailed by injury (a serious leg-break against that lot down the road), but his name will remain in the record books as the first Pompey player ever to be substituted. Vince was replaced by Tony Barton who went onto the pitch and into the books seconds later.
Local lad Harris was an absolute goal-machine and a pivotal player in Pompey’s back-to-back Championship winning sides. A super-pacey right-winger, he holds the record as the club’s all-time top goal-scorer after finding the back of the net on 193 occasions. Connor Chaplin has got a way to go just yet.
It’s not often Real Madrid come knocking but then again it’s not often we have a player the quality of Lassana Diarra. The £18m the Spanish giants forked out for him in 2008 is the highest transfer fee received by the club. Lass is also in the record books as scoring Pompey’s first ever goal in a major European competition against Vitoria Guimaraes.
After the near misses of 1929 and 1934, Portsmouth Football Club finally got its name engraved on the FA Cup trophy in 1939. A convincing 4-1 victory over Wolverhampton Wanderers saw captain Jimmy Guthrie enter the record books as the first Pompey player to lift the famous cup after being presented it by King George VI. Sol Campbell was the second and we were there.
Loyalty personified, Jimmy Dickinson is in the Fratton Park record books as the gentlemanly holder of the most number of league appearances for the club, all 764 of them. His 48 international appearances also make him Pompey’s most capped English player.
When Alan Ball persuaded the powers that be to sign Rory Allen in July 1999 the former Spurs’ striker Pompey’s first million pound transfer signing. Sadly, return on the historic investment was low as injuries blighted the striker’s Fratton Park career. His spell with the club came to an abrupt end when he did a runner only later to be found watching the Ashes in Australia with his mates.
The lanky striker has been Pompey’s record signing on no less than two occasions. The first when we snaffled him away from QPR in 2001 for £1.5m and the second when the prodigal beanpole was re-signed from Liverpool in 2008. The £11m spent on the deal makes Crouch Pompey’s most expensive ever signing.
With Paul Walsh providing the ammunition, former army-man Guy Whittingham achieved the unthinkable during the 1992-93 season by scoring a phenomenal 42 league goals. By doing so he broke Willie ‘Farmers Boy’ Haines’ seemingly insurmountable record.