WITH the final pre-season match having been played, all attention now turns to the Pilgrims’ 2012-13 campaign and, immediately, the Capital One Cup game against Portsmouth.The fixture, on Tuesday, August 14, against opponents who are suffering similar financial problems that Argyle faced this time last year rings an uncomfortable chime for the Green Army and Home Park staff.
Such is the sympathy that the club and fans feel for Pompey’s plight that they are rallying round their opponents, giving back to the game the support they had from the football family when they were in troubled times.
The match has been designated a Fans Re-United game, with supporters of all clubs invited to attend the match to stand united with Pompey supporters.
Last year, fans of more than 60 clubs attended the Argyle game against Macclesfield at Home Park to express similar sentiments towards the Pilgrims.
“Argyle fans are forever indebted for that inspirational day,” said Argyle President Chris Webb, “and, next Tuesday, we pass the baton onto Portsmouth Football Club and the Blue Army.
On top of that:
• the Green Army will hold one of their legendary Fansfests in the Green Taverners’ Suite, with proceeds split 50-50 between the Pompey Supporters Trust and the fund for accelerated back-wages payments to Argyle staff;
• Sue Pollard, who was recognised by the Football League as their Fan of the Year for her sterling fund-raising activities on behalf of the Argyle staff, will again be out with the collection buckets for the Portsmouth trust and Argyle staff;
• A special pre-match message to Portsmouth from the club and fans will be read before the game.
Argyle owner and chairman James Brent has also expressed support for the Pompey staff and players in his programme notes.
“It is not for me to opine on where fault lies for their financial decline,” said James.
“What I do resolutely believe is that fault does not lie with the fans or general staff of Portsmouth, or with the wider community.
“Clubs like Pompey and Argyle should sit at the very heart of our respective communities, and the victims – staff and fans – of financial mismanagement should not be punished further.
“While I wish Pompey nothing but defeat [against Argyle], I give them my heartfelt best wishes as they fight for their club’s survival.”
Chris said: “Next Tuesday will be a fantastic occasion, whatever team you follow. Get along to Home Park as the baton is passed from the Green Army to the Blue Army.
“The message is simple and so true – fans united will never be defeated.”
...that Green+ Members get a free 2012-13 Argyle shirt?