Outside the Box: Portsmouth's shirt printers could make up the numbers

 

Never mind buying a 2013 calendar – on which only two of the 12 featured players remain at the club – pity any Portsmouth supporters brave enough to want their favourite player's name on a replica shirt. With another seven leaving last week (six released and one returning after a loan), there have so far been three No 17s, three No 1s, two No 9s and two No 35s this season. Pompey have already used 42 players, which will soon increase as James Keene has now returned to the club; he played twice in the Premier League for Portsmouth under Harry Redknapp at the end of 2004-05, but left for Elfsborg in 2007 and has been in Sweden ever since. The squad currently under the caretaker management of development coach Guy Whittingham numbers only 14 senior players, including Keene. Of those who went to Spain for two pre-season games under Michael Appleton (now on a third club of the season himself after switching from Blackpool to Blackburn), only goalkeeper Simon Eastwood remains. He had just signed for Bradford Park Avenue from FC Halifax Town last July when Appleton offered him a deal. After the latest departures, Eastwood, who is only on a monthly contract himself, tweeted poignantly: "Will miss all the lads who are leaving." In a masterpiece of understatement Whittingham said there were "a few spaces available in our squad". As ever at Fratton Park, the fans are the only constant. The average home attendance despite serious relegation worries is 12,391. Only Sheffield United can boast a higher League One figure and the average is little more than 6,000.

Due recognition for Giuly

Many a stadium around the world has been renamed after a noted performer, but few get to play in one that bears their name. That will be the case next season for Ludovic Giuly, the former France midfielder who was in the Barcelona team that beat Arsenal in the Champions' League final of 2006. After finishing a loan from Monaco to Lorient in June, the 36-year-old will return to his first club, Chasselay, a fourth-division team whose 5,000-capacity stadium is named after him.

In league with the enemy

The normally ubiquitous Premier League chairman and Football Association board member Sir Dave Richards may have been missing from the Football Association's 150th anniversary launch in London last week, although he was invited, but it is no surprise to find him heavily involved with another new body. The World League Association may sound like a rather sinister organisation from an early James Bond plot, but it has been founded on a similar basis to the European Clubs Association, which under Bayern Munich's Karl-Heinz Rummenigge has been standing up for the rights and interests of clubs against bodies such as Fifa and Uefa. The WLA's aims tend to sound extremely worthy, but with a sting in the tail for the latter pair; namely to "foster cooperation and unity among the World Leagues, while promoting and safeguarding their common interests and aspirations". It can be safely assumed that those interests and aspirations do not include any extra international matches. And the chairman? The aforementioned Sir Dave Richards.

Don but not forgotten

Collectors of Leeds United memorabilia will be drawn to an auction being held by Staceys of Rayleigh, Essex on 11 February, which includes the This Is Your Life book of Don Revie's appearance in April 1974 (just as the club were about to become League champions). The estimate is £800, just below those for a 1966 World Cup report book signed by the England coaching staff and all 22 players, and an "incredibly rare" complete 1970 World Cup Panini sticker book estimated at £900 to £1,000.

s.tongue@independent.co.uk; twitter.com/@stevetongue

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Raif Badawi: Wife pleads for fresh EU help as Saudi blogger's health worsens

Please save my husband

As the health of blogger Raif Badawi worsens in prison, his wife urges EU governments to put pressure on the Saudi Arabian royal family to allow her husband to join his family in Canada
Birthplace of Arab Spring in turmoil as angry Tunisians stage massive sit-in over lack of development

They shall not be moved: jobless protesters bring Tunisia to a halt

A former North African boom town is wasting away while its unemployed citizens stick steadfastly to their sit-in
David Hasselhoff's new show 'Hoff the Record': What's it like working with a superstar?

Hanging with the Hoff

Working with David Hasselhoff on his new TV series was an education for Ella Smith
Can Dubai's Design District 'hipster village' attract the right type of goatee-wearing individualist?

Hipsters of Arabia

Can Dubai’s ‘creative village’ attract the right type of goatee-wearing individualist?
The cult of Roger Federer: What is it that inspires such obsessive devotion?

The cult of Roger Federer

What is it that inspires such obsessive devotion?
Kuala Lumpur's street food: Not a 'scene', more a way of life

Malaysian munchies

With new flights, the amazing street food of Kuala Lumpur just got more accessible
10 best festival beauty

Mud guards: 10 best festival beauty

Whether you're off to the Isle of Wight, Glastonbury or a local music event, we've found the products to help you
Unai Emery’s passion for winning and eye for a bargain keep Seville centre stage in Europe

A Different League

Unai Emery’s passion for winning and eye for a bargain keep Seville centre stage in Europe, says Pete Jenson
Amir Khan and James DeGale’s remarkable Olympic performances were just the start of an extraordinary journey - Steve Bunce

Steve Bunce on Boxing

Amir Khan and James DeGale’s remarkable Olympic performances were just the start of an extraordinary journey
Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

Evolution of swimwear

From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf