Portsmouth

Fratton Park

Capacity: 20,700 (all seated)
Address: Frogmore Road, Portsmouth, PO4 8RA
Telephone: 02392 731204
Fax: 02392 734129
Ticket Office: 0345 646 1898
Pitch Size: 115 x 73 yards
Club Nickname: Pompey
Year Ground Opened: 1898
Shirt Sponsors: Jobsite.co.uk
Kit Manufacturer: Sondico
Home Kit: Blue, White & Red
Away Kit: White and Blue
Third Kit: Black With Gold Trim

Fratton End External View
Fratton End External View
South Stand
South Stand
Fratton End
Fratton End
North Stand
North Stand
Milton End
Milton End
Mock Tudor Facade
Mock Tudor Facade

Fratton Park is a traditional looking ground and one which oozes character. Both side stands are two tiered and originally had terracing at the front, which has now been replaced with seating. The South Stand dates back to 1925 and was originally designed by Archibald Leitch who also designed a number of grounds and stands around this period. Although showing its age in parts, it has plenty of character with an old fashioned looking media gantry perched on its roof and raised team dugouts at its front. Opposite the North Stand opened in 1935, looks somewhat plain and functional. Both the North & South Stands are two tiered and have a number of supporting pillars.

At one end is the Fratton End, which is a more modern single tiered stand that was opened in 1997. It is of a good size and is the tallest stand at the ground. The seating in this stand contains an outline resembling a former player, Jimmy Dickinson, who still holds the record for the most club appearances. Opposite is the recently covered Milton End, which is all seated. Part of this stand is given to away fans. On one corner of this stand by the away supporters is a Police Control Box that also has a large video screen perched upon its roof. The ground is completed with a superb looking set of tall floodlights that were first used in 1962.

Outside the stadium on one corner of the South Stand, is the unique (in terms of football grounds) and eye catching mock tudor facade, which contains the club ticket office and a stadium entrance.

Away fans are housed on one side of the Milton End (on the North Stand side) where the normal allocation is 2,000. If demand requires it, then the whole of this end can be allocated, raising the allocation to 3,200 seats. Although this end now benefits from having cover, the facilities within are pretty basic and the leg room tight, as this stand was a former terrace that has been converted to all seating. There are also some supporting pillars along the front of the stand that may impede you view. On a positive note, away supporters can really make some noise from this stand, further contributing to what is normally a great atmosphere, which is further aided by a drummer and bell ringer in the Fratton End.

Although this end is shared with home supporters, the Pompey home support get behind their team but generally in a non-intimidatory way towards the away contingent. Fans were literally separated by a netted area only three seats wide, but on my last visit there were no problems whatsoever. Entrance to the stand is gained by inserting your ticket into a bar code reader. If you have not pre-purchased a ticket for the game, then allow yourself plenty of time as the ticket booth is located at the opposite end of the ground to the away end. On the whole though try to sit back and enjoy Fratton Park such older grounds now are becoming few and far between with the advent of new stadia being built.

Chris Saunders a visiting Middlesbrough fan adds; 'It terms of facilities the ground is light years away from Premiership standard, but the atmosphere is electric with the legendary 'Play Up Pompey' echoing around the ground.  The Portsmouth fans are a great bunch and made me most welcome. If you are feeling hungry then there is a McDonalds and KFC across the road from the ground.' 

On my last visit I went to the Good Companion pub, which is on the main A2030 about a five minute walk away from the ground. It is a large pub serving real ales and had a good mix of home and away support. I also noticed that it was doing a brisk business in food. Martin Hewitt recommends the Harvester, but advises away fans to avoid the Newcome Arms. On Milton Road close to the ground is the Brewers Arms which is popular with away fans. Close by is the Milton Arms, which at one time was for home fans only. However since a new landlord had taken over, it now welcomes visiting supporters. This pub also has the added advantages of showing the early televised kick off match on a huge screen and serving food (even having outdoor BBQs if the weather is good).

Derek Hall adds; 'Found a cracking little pub, about a mile away from the ground, on Fawcett Road. It's called (very appropriately) The Red, White and Blue. There are also a few other pubs - and plenty of take-aways (of all varieties) along this road. Friendly staff, friendly Pompey fans (chiefly, of the elder variety) and simple food fayre on offer. To reach the pub, you just head west from the ground, towards the Fratton Railway Station, along Goldsmith Avenue. Just past the station, you reach a roundabout - and Fawcett Road is immediately on your left'. 

Pete Wood a visiting Doncaster Rovers fan informs me; 'If travelling by train from London, then your return ticket from London Waterloo allows you to get off at either Fratton (nearest to ground), Portsmouth & Southsea (best for pubs) or Portsmouth Harbour. What we did was have a drink in the two Wetherspoon pubs near Portsmouth & Southsea Station before getting the train back to Fratton for the match. You can catch a train back to Waterloo from Fratton after the game. The trains run  every 20 or 30 minutes or so'.

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Go along the M27 (ignoring the M275 turn off for Portsmouth town centre) and continue on to the A27. At the junction with the A2030 turn right towards Southsea/Fratton and just continue straight along the A2030 and eventually you will see the ground in front of you, just slightly to your left. 

There is a large car park behind the TY Europe Stand, but this is for home supporters only. So it is mostly street parking for away fans. The good news is that there are few parking restrictions in place close to the ground. So if you arrive early enough, you can park only a few minutes walk away. When I have visited, I have parked in one of the side streets, found on the right hand side of the A2030 before you reach the Good Companion pub. Alternatively Miltoncross School, which is a five minute walk from the ground offers parking at £6 per car. The school is located in Milton Road (post code PO3 6RB). Derek Hall adds; 'There is also a very large car park (for a fiver) on the corner of Velder Avenue and Milton Road (a couple of minutes walk behind the away end)'.

Post Code for SAT NAV: PO4 8RA

The nearest local train station is Fratton, which is a ten minute walk away. Portsmouth train station is at least a 25 minute walk away.

On arrival at Fratton by train you pass the ground on the left. Fratton station has a footbridge as the only way out. At the top of the stairs from the platform turn left onto the footbridge (from which you can see the floodlights of Fratton Park) and exit into Goldsmith Avenue. (Note that if the gate on the footbridge is closed you need to turn right on the footbridge and exit via Platform 1, turn left as you exit the station, walk 30 metres and go back over the footbridge to Goldsmith Avenue.) Turn left along Goldsmith Avenue and walk about half a mile passing straight around a small roundabout (by the Pompey Centre). Then Turn Left into Frogmore Road and the entrance to the Fratton End and South Stands is 100m ahead. For the Milton End stay on Goldsmith Avenue for another 100m and turn left into Apsley Road. The entrances to the Milton End are 100m ahead.

Thanks to Peter Coulthard for providing the directions.

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All areas of the ground: 
Adults £20
Over 60's/Under 23's £15
Under 17's £10
Under 17's £5 (when accompanied by an adult)

Official Programme £3

Portsmouth FC fixture list (takes you to the BBC Sports website).

Southampton.

Record Attendance

51,385 v Derby County FA Cup 6th Round, February 26th, 1949.

Modern All Seated Attendance Record

20,821 v Tottenham Hotspur,  Premier League, October 17th 2009.

Average Attendance
2015-2016: 16,391 (League Two)
2014-2015: 15,242 (League Two)
2013-2014: 15,461 (League Two)

Why not write your own review of Fratton Park Portsmouth and have it included in the Guide? Find out more about submitting a Fans Football Ground Review.

Portsmouth v. Crawley Town
Football League Two
Saturday 3rd September 2016, 3pm
Geoff Slater (Crawley Town fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting Fratton Park?

Annual visit to our south coast rivals and the opportunity for my wife to undertake some serious retail therapy at Gunwharf Quays.

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

Coming from the East along the A27, then Fratton Park is well signposted, it being preferable to come off at the junction for Southsea. The floodlight pylons can be seen from some distance so finding the ground shouldn't be a problem. Much of the residential area around the ground is terrace housing so street parking is limited (and there are two hour parking restrictions for non-residents). However, the East end of Devonshire Avenue isn't too bad as long as you don't mind a 10-15 minute walk. As an alternative you could try the Tesco Extra behind the home end where there is a three hour parking restriction - enough for most matches.

What you did before the ga me pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?

The Pompey fans are a cheerful bunch, which perhaps isn't surprising given the club's rags to riches, then back to rags existence. (Pompey John will pose for selfies should the opportunity arise.) However, my son (a Portsmouth University graduate!) and I chose to have sandwiches along the seafront at Eastney - the calm before the storm.

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of Fratton Park?

Having come to Fratton Park over a period of almost 50 years, there have been numerous changes in that time, the most marked being the impressive home end (a larger version of stadio Woking) and the covering of the away end with seating placed on what was an open terrace. Fratton Park still retains an elderly ambience, similar to Craven Cottage, but they have now installed electronic entrance gates!

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

Facilities are pretty basic but there's always a good atmosphere and plenty of banter between the home and away fans. Stewards patrolled the areas between the now obligatory netting but other than that were largely inconspicuous despite their hi-vis jackets. As for the game itself, a first half pasting for Crawley meant a pretty mundane second half so not one to live long in the memory.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

The rain came down heavily at five o'clock so the 10-15 minute walk back to the car left us wet through. Getting out of Portsmouth on a damp Saturday afternoon (via Gunwharf Quays) can take a while but still less time that it takes to get out of the Oxford United car park on a match day!

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

A good family day out all things considered with a special mention to the Pompey supporter for removing an enormous house spider attacking my wife in the car as my son and I were purchasing our match tickets.

Portsmouth v Wycombe Wanderers
Football League Two
Saturday 23rd April 2016, 3pm
Thomas Inglis (Dundee United fan visiting English grounds)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting Fratton Park?

I was intrigued by the ground being as it is in the UK's only island city and had heard their support were quite passionate. This was also English ground No.65 visited for me.

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

I got my usual bus from Dundee at 8.45pm on the Friday, arriving at Victoria at 6.40am on the Saturday of the game. I then got my pre booked train Waterloo to Portsmouth. I could see the floodlights of the ground from Fratton station.

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?

I had a few hours to look around the town, sights, shops etc. At 12 noon I decided to go for a pint. I asked a couple of guys for the nearest boozer and they pointed out The Froddington Arms. I quickly put a bet on in the bookies then popped into this bar. At the bar were (Gary and Ben, Father and Son) the two guys who had suggested this pub, and Gary offered to buy me a pint - now that is friendly. We had 3 rounds of drinks and chatted about football on both sides of the border.

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of Fratton Park?

I had a look around the outside of the ground and took the obligatory photo of the fancy Tudor entrance. I bought a mug from the club shop then went in to my seat in the Fratton End behind the goal. It is a fairly big ground for league 2 (20,000 capacity). I chose this end as there are no obstructing pillars, evident in the other two big stands running the length of the park. The 800 or so Wycombe fans were housed in the stand behind the far goal. I liked the overall look of the ground, helped by the atmosphere.

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

A good backing from both sets of fans for most of the game (and the bell ringer) created a noisy atmosphere. Stewards - helpful, pies 4/10, toilets - could be better. The game turned out to be pretty decent, plenty goalmouth action, three goals and twice that near misses.Portsmouth were looking to cement a play off place and were pretty dominant first half. They took the lead on 37 minutes when Roberts slotted in a cutback from around 6 yards. On 67 minutes Chaplin chased a long through ball,held off the defender and fired in a fine goal from the edge of the box 2 - 0. To make for a nervy last 15 minutes Wycombe's Jombati smashed a 20 yard free kick into the top corner. The game finished 2 - 1 Portsmouth in front of 16,187 fans.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

To let the crowds get away I went for a bite to eat in town then a couple of pints in the Trafalgar Arms. Train back to London then overnight bus back to Dundee for Sunday morning.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

I enjoyed Portsmouth and the town itself. It was a good game, good banter with fans and ground number 65 checked off.

Portsmouth v Macclesfield Town
FA Cup 1st Round
Saturday 7th November 2015, 3pm
Simon Abbott (Macclesfield Town fan)

Why were you looking forward to visiting Fratton Park?

This was first ever meeting between the two clubs. 

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?  

Travelled from Bristol so journey was fairly straightforward apart from the weather. Have previously visited when supporting Bristol City - so was easy to find ground(the tall floodlights are a big help). Parked on a street within half a mile of Fratton Park.

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?    

Went slightly upmarket with a three course fixed price lunch for £12.95 at Brasserie Blanc on the Harbour front. Very pleasant. Atmosphere fairly relaxed with home fans as is normally the case when non-league clubs visit league clubs.

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the stadium?    

Whilst impressive for a League Two football ground it seems obvious that in their Premier League years not much money was invested in Fratton Park as it has a slightly run down air about it. The away end is distinctly average considering Portsmouth's recent status - seating leg room typical of 'older' stadium in being a little tight and the ladies toilets (I'm reliably informed) are not much to write home about. If there was a large away support the toilet and food facilities in the away end I think would seriously struggle to cope.

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..    

Stewards were incredibly officious considering the visiting club was non league, have had zero previous meetings or history with Pompey and in my long experience Macclesfield supporters do not have any 'reputation' for trouble making. After been frisked on the way in ( me and my wife of 50+ years old!) - this doesn't even happen at Championship games (eg Wolves, Derby, Leicester, WBA, Leeds, Birmingham etc) I have been too as an away supporter. - the stewards were taking a keen interest in the fact that the Macc fans were standing up - and that was half an hour before kick-off! This continued during the first half with threats of eviction from the ground - eventually this petered out after the half time break .(it should be noted that the same zeal was not applied to standing home fans).

Initially it appeared the game would be one-sided for the home team especially when they scored in the third minute. However after a massive howler from the Pompey keeper led to an equaliser Macclesfield grew in confidence and the play was more balanced until a bit of pinball in the Macc penalty area in first half added time led to Portsmouth taking the lead again. Second half was scoreless with relatively few chances for either side and Pompey scrapped home. Most of the atmosphere came from the Macclesfield fans as the home support was mostly quiet despite outnumbering the away support by over 20 to 1.Barely heard the chimes or the drum. I did not sample the food but it did seem expensive for League Two - eg £2.50 for a grab bag of crisps, £3.70 for a pie. Programme reasonably priced at £2.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Not particularly quick getaway as it took probably half an hour to get to the motorway but plain sailing after that.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

A good performance from Macclesfield against an underperforming Portsmouth and with slightly more composure Macc could have taken them to a replay. Whilst supporting my home town non league side I have also been to many League grounds whilst supporting Bristol City (27 years resident in Bristol) and in comparison Fratton Park has very poor away facilities to many clubs considering their very recent Premier League status. Portsmouth is a pleasant place to visit but their ground is not top of my list to re-visit.

Portsmouth v Stevenage
Football League Two
Tuesday 20th October 2015, 7.45pm
James Walker (Stevenage fan)

Why were you looking forward to visiting Fratton Park?    

If we had been travelling to Portsmouth a week ago then I would've been dreading it given our recent form, but a high-scoring draw then a win (with our keeper scoring) meant I was feeling fairly confident we could nick a result at Fratton Park.

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?  

As usual, I took the Stevenage supporters coach, which was due to leave at 4.30 but didn't end up going till nearly 5pm as we were waiting for one person who didn't seem to know (or care) about listed departure times!

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?    

A crash on the M3 followed by heavy local traffic meant we were only arriving at Fratton Park as the game was kicking off. Our driver then missed the turning in to the stadium, and therefore having to do a lap of the whole ground (getting stuck in every set of red lights). This meant we ended up getting in to the ground roughly eight minutes in to the match, so no interaction with home fans outside, but I remember from previous visits that they are friendly enough.

What you thought on seeing Fratton Park, first impressions of away end then other sides of the stadium?    

Having been here on our last two visits, I knew exactly what to expect. I always enjoy visiting Fratton Park as it's an old stadium and it's fairly easy to generate an atmosphere here. The away fans are in one half of the Milton End and Pompey fans are near the end of that stand, with only a bit of netting across a few rows of seats as segregation.

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

The game itself was a bit of a blur (they usually are for me when I miss the kick-off) but Portsmouth had the better of the attacking play in the first half without causing us too many problems. 0-0 at Half Time seemed like a fair result to me. As I didn't have any time to get a programme or food before the game, I knew what I would be doing during the interval.. Programme sellers walk around the edge of the pitch during the break so getting a copy of the matchday read (£3) was easy. Next for refreshments. I went for my usual Chicken Balti pie (£3.20) and it was one of the nicest I have had this season! The pie was swiftly demolished and soon it was time for the second half. Dipo Akinyemi should've put us 1-0 up almost straight after the restart but fired a great chance just wide. Pompey then started to build up, forcing Jesse Joronen in to some great saves. However with 13 minutes to play, Conor Chaplin pounced on a defensive error to put Pompey 1-0 up. Cue eruption around the home stands. However we were not to be denied as Brett Williams was subbed on in the 92nd minute and was racing away celebrating the equaliser in the 94th, a good looping header from a long throw. Cue mayhem in the away end! The final whistle went soon after and it felt like a win for us. I was delighted to see that the toilets have been upgraded in the away end. It used to be on par with York for the worst Gents in the league but now looks much better with the improvements.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Getting away was simple as we walked out of the away end, went through one of the car parks and across a road to board to coach for the trip back home.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Thankfully our trip back wasn't as long as the one going, getting off the coach back at the Lamex around 12.15am. A long night with a fantastic end to it thanks to Willo's goal earning us a fantastic point. Now on to Sixfields on Saturday.

Result: Portsmouth 1-1 Stevenage
Attendance: 14,900 (133 away fans)

Portsmouth v Exeter City
Football League Division Two
Tuesday 29th September 2015, 7.45pm
Terry Bingham (Exeter City fan)

Why were you looking forward to visiting Fratton Park?    

I had not been to Fratton Park for many years and was looking forward to see if it had changed.

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?    

Travelling from Exeter at 3.30pm meant that we encountered several traffic jams as we hit rush hour all around the Bournemouth and Southampton areas. However we were lucky to find a car parking space about a mile from Fratton Park. Met up with a very helpful Pompey supporter who showed us the shortest way to the ground.

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly? 

Arrived at the ground with just 15 minutes until kick off, so no time to get food or a drink. Everybody we met were very friendly and helpful.

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of Fratton Park?    

Didn't see much change in the ground from my last visit.  It seems as it needs some modernising, but did not worry me as I like older stadiums of this sort. Adequate away end, only spoilt by behaviour of a couple of away fans who were removed when they refused to sit. Well done the stewards.

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..    

The game was exciting for Exeter fans as we took an early lead and added a second in the first half. Atmosphere electric in the second half as both set of fans were trying to out shout each other. One way traffic in the second half and fortunately we held out until injury time when Portsmouth got a consolation.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Quite straight forward as we retraced our steps back to the car which was parked near the main road back to the motorway. Couldn't get any food as the food outlets were so crowded, and it would have seriously delayed our return journey.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

A good day, apart from the journey to Portsmouth.

Portsmouth v Plymouth Argyle
Football League Two
Monday 6th April 2015, 3pm
Tom Harris (Plymouth Argyle fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting Fratton Park?    

Dockyard Derby! A visit to the biggest stadium in League Two, so I was really excited for this fixture. I wasn't overly confident that Argyle would win but I was still anticipating a good game.

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?    

I know someone who lives in Portsmouth, so I stayed with them and walked to Fratton Park.

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?    

The home fans seemed okay, but I had covered up my Argyle shirt as I walked to the ground. Pompey fans at the pubs surrounding the ground seemed alright and I didn't see any bother. 

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of Fratton Park?    

Fratton Park is a huge ground for a League Two side. The size of it shows you how out of place Pompey are. They deserve to at least be a Championship side at least. The away end uses an electric system for scanning the tickets as you go in and its quite tight for space behind the stand. Once in the stand, there isn't loads of leg room and the flooring is uneven in places, so I had to watch my step. The view though is amazing.

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..    

We lost 2-1 but as a consolation I saw one of the goals of the season from our midfielder Olly Lee. The atmosphere at Fratton Park is unbelievable, the fans constantly singing as well as the bell in the back ground. The noise round the stadium was very loud. Sometimes I hate being an away fan and seeing a home team score because it makes you feel so alone in your part of the ground. Never have I felt this more than at Portsmouth.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

It was okay getting out of the ground. There was a bit of shouting between the Argyle and Portsmouth fans but no trouble.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Great day out, although I felt that Portsmouth didn't deserve to win really, but that is football. A great stadium though and one I would definitely visit again.

Portsmouth v Oxford United
League Two
Saturday 28th February 2015, 3pm
Jake Hardiman (Oxford United)

Why you were looking forward to going to the ground?

As an Oxford fan there is rarely a chance to visit what was so recently a Premier League ground so naturally, helped by the promise of a good away following and a 3-0 home win over Mansfield Town the previous week, I jumped at the chance.
 
How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

A simple enough train journey from Reading via Guildford (having almost missed the bus to the station!) which took around a couple of hours, was followed by a walk which was by no means short but still simple enough. Fratton Park is also quite a bit easier to find than certain away grounds, due to its towering nature.
 
What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?

As per usual, we took a walk around this impressive ground, marvelling particularly at Fratton Park's famous Tudor façade, before entering the away end (following some fairly rigorous and arguably over the top searching) in good time around an hour before kick off. Home and away fans were able to mix freely outside the stadium.
 
What you though on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end, then other sides of the stadium?

We were almost awestruck upon entering this comparatively huge ground, and the away end certainly impressed, being large and fans housed close to the action. Opposite us was the impressive Fratton End, the ground's "Kop" and tallest stand. To our left was the two tiered South Stand, which housed the dugouts and press box, and, to our right, the North Stand, which had an unusually large number of supporting poles dotted around it.
 
Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc.

Although the game finished 0-0, it was by no means the worst I've ever seen, with both sides putting in a competitive performance but being unable to get anything past two pretty resolute defences (special mention to Ryan Clarke, Oxford's keeper who made two magnificent saves in the first half). As expected, the Yellows were backed by an impressive away following (1,292 out of a total crowd of 16,355), which made for a good atmosphere-the Pompey fans weren't exactly quiet themselves to be fair, although they could do with finding a song other than "play up Pompey" or "blue army". The stewards were fairly disciplined and kept people from standing in the aisles, but ultimately they were friendly and useful in allowing us to stand, which the majority of the away fans did.
 
Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

With a big crowd present this wasn't the quickest thing ever, but it was still easy enough and we arrived back at the station in good time for our train back to Reading via Southampton.
 
Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

A decent result at a brilliant ground, one which will almost certainly be done again next season when, hopefully, both teams are challenging for the promotion spots they deserve.

Portsmouth v Northampton Town
League Two
Saturday, December 28th, 2013, 3pm
Elliott Barnes-Ward (Northampton Town fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground?

I was looking forward to going to the match because I got the tickets as a Christmas present from my Uncle. My late Granddad had supported Pompey and he once took me there, but that was some time ago.  So I was really looking forward to a great match and seeing what it was like as an away fan.

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

We journeyed by car leaving Northampton at 10:30am and arrived at Fratton Park at about 1:30pm. We  parked relatively easily in a side street, just a couple of minutes walk away from the ground.

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?

We had Lunch at a KFC which was in sight of the ground and accommodated both Pompey and Cobblers fans. It had quite a friendly atmosphere, but a lot of fans arriving later had to queue for a while to get their food.

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the stadium?

We made our way to the very old looking away stand, about 20 minutes before kick off and took our seats with the help from the Stewards. The other sides of the ground look like very old classic stands especially the two tiered South Stand, to our left, which had displayed on the front some of the old Division 1 and FA Cup titles on Bill Boards that Pompey have won over the years.

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc.. 

The game was very good, with Pompey's striker Jed Wallace hitting the bar early on, then, later in the first half, Cobblers defender Ben Tozer took a long range throw in which hit the bar as well. In the second half, our keeper, Matt Duke, made quite a good save from a header, then, in the dying minutes, David Moyo was through on goal and then was fouled inside the box but, surprisingly, no penalty was given, so the game ended 0-0.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

It was very easy getting out of the stand with 728 Cobblers fans in. It was also quite easy finding the car as well, and we left the ground surrounded by Pompey fans who were very friendly.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

It was a great Christmas present and I had a great day, I wouldn’t hesitate in visiting Fratton Park again one day.

Portsmouth v Exeter City
League Two
Saturday November 2nd, 2013, 3pm
Steve Ellis (Exeter City fan)

1. Why were you looking forward to going to this ground?

For me this was a new ground to visit. Like Exeter City they are a supporter owned club and definitely a club to go to given their history.

2. How easy was your journey?

The journey was straight forward, travelling on the supporters coach. We left Exeter mid morning, arriving in Portsmouth just after 1pm.

3. What did you do before the game?

On arrival at the ground I first picked up my programme for the price of £3. Then we walked along a narrow footpath from the car park along the side of the stadium to the away turnstiles. From there we took a 5minute walk to the end of that road to the main road where almost opposite was the Shepherds Crook pub. Inside it had a mixture of home and away fans and offered drinks at a reasonable price.

4. First impressions on seeing the ground?

On getting through the turnstiles there is about 30 steps up to the back of the stand. Once in your seat you can see that the ground is still very much in the old style where the fans are almost on top of the pitch, just a few supporting pillars blocking some views.

5. Comment on the game, atmosphere, refreshments, stewards and toilets?

The game was played at a very fast pace with Portsmouth running out 3-2 winners after being 3-0 up in front of just over 16,000 supporters. With the 1,302 travelling Exeter fans creating a fantastic atmosphere in the away end. The refreshment hut is about half way down the steps towards the entrance/exit, on asking for a cup of tea 10 minutes before kick off I was told hot food and drinks were not ready so had to settle for a bottle of coke, by half time they had sold out and closed up! Stewards were very helpful and non-obtrusive and had to open up the corner section of the away stand for the late arrivals. The toilets looked very old and dirty.

6. Comments on getting away after the game?

Very easy walk back to where the coach dropped us off and a straight forward journey home.

7. Summary of the day out?

A very good day out despite the loss, but the way we played we still went home in good spirits.

Portsmouth v Preston North End
League One
Saturday December 15th 2012, 3pm
Paul Willott (Preston North End fan)

The trip to the south coast was one of those days in football when it was difficult to know what emotions should really be foremost; on the one hand, a desire to see my team win, and win well would normally be uppermost, yet with Pompey in such a dire situation with their off-field problems, I couldn't help but feel real empathy towards their plight.  No-one wants to see good clubs go bust, if only for the "there but the grace of God" syndrome surely. It seemed only a breath of wind had passed since the Pompey chimes were frequently heard on "Match of the Day", but two relegations, administration, points deductions and court visits galore, the club was hanging over the relegation zone in the third tier of English football, with debts reportedly in the region of £61million and a further points deduction apparently waiting in the wings.

So, with weird emotions I, along with my daughter departed Kent, detoured via Croydon to collect two work colleagues, and then headed South along the A3.  Early watery sunshine dissipated as we neared our destination, and the grey clouds seemed to be almost touching the floodlights of Fratton Park in a gesture of nature that was far too symbolic for my liking.

We opted to pay £5 to ditch the car on one of the small business outlets near the ground for convenience, and made our way to the stadium.  My mood lifted somewhat as we walked towards the ground; it has a lovely flavour of the bygone age of football, when matchdays were more spontaneous, echoes of generations of men who would flock to such venues to stand under the floodlights on terraces to watch their team in whatever the weather could throw at them.

Although modernisation has touched Fratton, you can still taste the rich history. One of the things I was keen to see was how the ground had indeed changed since my previous visits. The "Milton End" for away fans has recently had a roof added to complement the seats fitted onto the former open terrace, and the opposite end for the home fans is a quite distinct and impressive modern all-seat affair, a far cry from the open terrace that greeted me on my first visit in 1994

The two stands along the side of the pitch have both had seats fitted onto their once charming open paddocks, and the stand to our right as we viewed the pitch has had its roof extended considerably. Meanwhile, as you wander along the back of the "Milton End" to enter the viewing area, or return to purchase refreshments, you can see into the backs of all the houses; the colourful array of childrens climbing frames, broken bicycles, well tended gardens, others less well cared for, another reminder of how much history has passed down this lovely old ground.

We were all impressed with the most vibrant co-ordinated drumming that was the pre-match entertainment; one of the better such that I have seen for a while, and it was equally interesting to see all the 'blue santas' amongst the home support, something that my 8 year old daughter found most amusing, if somewhat bizarre. I tried to explain that Pompey fans love their club very, very much, and many like to dress up as blue santas at this time of year to show their love for the club . . . . . . she didn't seem too convinced, but was certainly captivated!

Once the match itself started, I sensed we may have a problem, as some stewards seemed keen to try and make all the Preston supporters sit in their seats, and in so doing they were blocking our view of the match, but they soon seemed to sense that they were fighting a losing battle and disappeared and left us to view the less than appetising fayre on offer. As a football match, it was poor, and the atmosphere amongst the home fans seemed more directed at overall survival with chants such as "We'll never die" floating across the air. The penalty that Portsmouth were awarded, and then contrived to smash against the crossbar in the 14th minute probably summed the contest up.

I was merely glad that, as the clouds opened with a vengeance and unleashed the most torrential rain, that the "Milton End" now had a roof. Meanwhile on the pitch, we could have stayed there till midnight and we still probably wouldn't have seen a goal - in part I wouldn't have minded, as there is a certain magic about watching those swathes of rain drift illuminated under the shafts of light from the floodlight pylons; and it was more entertaining than the football too!  On the other hand, when the referee blew the final whistle, it put us all out of a certain misery; fans of both clubs have been used to seeing much better football at higher level(s), and it was sad to see how on the pitch neither side had much to offer, but I would have to admit that the Pompey youngsters seemed to have more desire and hunger than our players applied themselves with.

Thus we wandered off into the wet gloom of the environs of Fratton Park, and were pretty quickly settled into the car to head home, and as we did, caught a few glimpses of the floodlights glaring down onto the old lady that is Fratton Park in between rows of terraced houses.

That evening, I noticed that the 0-0 draw had not been enough to prevent Pompey from dropping into the relegation zone, and with another ten point penalty hanging over their heads, I really fear as I do still for the future of the club, and its lovely ground.  I hope come May 2013 they have survived to play league one football again, but the omens are as gloomy as the weather was at the final whistle that afternoon.

Portsmouth v Notts County
FA Cup 1st Round
Saturday November 3rd 2012, 3pm
James Spring (Notts County fan)

1. Why were you looking forward to visiting the ground (Or not as the case may be)?

I’ve heard nothing but good things about a trip to Fratton Park, so it’s a ground I’ve wanted to visit for a long time. However it was only this season that the opportunity arose to see Notts County play there in League One, but we ended up drawing them away in the FA Cup 1st round, and being a Weymouth based Notts County fan; I couldn’t resist an earlier than expected trip to the old ground.

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

We caught a train from Upwey Station, switched at Southampton Central, and arrived at Fratton Station just after half 12. There’s a footbridge over the station which brings you out onto Goldsmith Avenue. To get to the ground, turn left until you reach the roundabout at Hazel Court (You’ll see the Pompey club shop in one corner). If you turn left at the roundabout onto Fratton Way you can get to the ground that way, this brings you to the Fratton End and the ticket office. There’s also a KFC and McDonalds on this road. To get to the away end straight away go straight across that roundabout and go left when you reach Apsley Road. The Milton End is no more than a five minute walk down there.

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy...home fans friendly?

Brought a match day programme for £3 (66 pages, decent quality - there are sellers all around the ground, even near Fratton Station!) before going for a pre match meal at the McDonalds on Fratton Way. We then walked across to the Fratton End of the ground to welcome the team coach. Most of the home fans we came across were very friendly and chatty.

If you want to see the Tudor Facade and are at the Fratton End of the ground you’ll see a sign on a wall saying ‘Frogmore Road Ticket Office’. Head down the alley to the right side of that and it brings you out right in front of the facade. To get to the away end from there head down Carisbrooke Road and turn left onto Specks Lane.

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end and other sides of the ground?

The ground is just as old fashioned and as full of character as I thought it would be. The four tall floodlights are visible from Fratton Station and that, for me – always signals a ‘proper’ football ground. The away end is a bit tight in terms of legroom but the view I had was better than expected, even stood right in the back row. There are a few supporting pillars at the front of the stand which do seem to impede your view at times no matter where you sit.

To the right of the Milton End is the North Stand – an old fashioned but large stand. You can tell the front part used to be terracing. Opposite you is the Fratton End where the wonderful atmosphere the Pompey fans create comes from and to the left is the South Stand – probably the oldest looking stand at the ground. None of the stands seem to match but it doesn’t seem to matter at Fratton Park – it’s a ground steeped in history and full of character. I loved it.

5. Comment on the game itself, stewards, atmosphere, pies, facilities etc..

The first half was somehow an entertaining affair with little goal-mouth action until Francois Zoko headed Notts into the lead just as the board went up for one minute of added time. The second half began with Pompey – as expected giving it a real go but the Notts gave themselves a deserved 2-0 lead on 56 minutes when Arquin struck home from Campbell-Ryce’s cross. Pompey never really offered a great deal after that and Notts looked more likely to score again.

The match became a bit spicy with around a quarter of an hour to go when Portsmouth’s Scott Allan saw red for kicking out at Jamal Campbell-Ryce right in front of the dugouts. A bit of a scuffle between both sides followed which resulted in another yellow card being handed to both sides.

Notts saw the game out to claim a rather comfortable 2-0 victory at Fratton Park.  The stewards are very helpful, chatty, don’t mind people standing up near the back and didn’t force us to sit in our allocated seats. The Atmosphere, as expected was excellent particularly from the Pompey fans who I don’t think stopped singing all game, great credit to them – they’re a magnificent bunch of supporters.

There’s a small food outlet at the back of the Milton End, so I’d expect a bit of a queue. I didn’t sample it for myself but from what people around us brought it appears they have the usual selection of hot/cold drinks, snacks, and pies.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

A lot of the crowd were heading towards the station and we seemed to mix with no problems at all, even got talking to another Pompey fan at the station. The roads immediately surrounding the ground did appear to be quite busy as you’d expect but the traffic soon disappeared. 

7. Summary of overall thoughts of day out:

On the whole an excellent day out to an old ground full of character and steeped in tradition, made sweeter by a win for the Magpies. Can’t wait to return for the league fixture in January.

Portsmouth v Swindon Town
League One
Tuesday September 18th, 2012, 7.45pm
Ronan Howard (Swindon Town fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

Evening kick off under the floodlights of a fine old historic ground, along with yet another near capacity away crowd, and the closest away game I was going to get this season!

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

Another one I’d gone to on the train, which from Basingstoke was a direct journey taking around an hour. A mate of mine who’d driven down from Swindon did say parking was horrendous but couldn’t comment personally. The ground being a ten minute walk from Fratton train station and easily identifiable by those grand old floodlights made the journey very straightforward.

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

Having passed the ground and gotten my bearings, I made a beeline for the Brewers Arms, an away-friendly Fullers pub a short walk from the ground. Portsmouth and Swindon fans mixed well and the pompey fans were a credit to their club. I found the area around the ground far more welcoming than some less high profile games, none of the pubs seemed to be asking fans if they were home/away supporters, and certainly didn’t go so far as to ask for proof in the form of match tickets (I’ve had this at Southampton and Aldershot before). The general impression was one of passionate but welcoming supporters.

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

Completely iconic, and so nice to see in contrast to many modern stadiums. The floodlights are a fantastic thing to see, especially when they’re used for an evening kick off.

The away end which was fully occupied by Swindon fans was a bit of a throwback – once through the turnstiles the stand looks like a former terrace, and is very open. Both side stands are fairly small and basic looking, but the home end is fairly large and impressive. Can’t comment on the quality of the seating as the stewards allowed us to stand for the whole game.

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

Pompey had been on a poor run of form and as visitors we dominated the game from the off – some great passing moves and reasonably clinical finishing had put us 2-0 up and coasting, however town did their best to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, and Portsmouth were well worth their consolation towards the end of the game. Thankfully we held on for a deserved 2-1 win. The facilities were fairly basic but functional, and the stewards were helpful but not intrusive, always a good sign.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

A short walk back to the train station and a fairly quick return journey capped off a good evening – also had the opportunity to have a friendly chat with some Portsmouth fans on the way home, who were very gracious in defeat. Logistically one of the easier away trips in the league.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Good game, good win, home support vocal and passionate without being intimidating. A classic football ground and a great club, unfortunately which have had happier times. Best of luck to Portsmouth for the rest of the season, definitely a ground I’d like to return to.

Portsmouth v West Ham United
Championship League
Saturday January 14th 2012, 3pm
Jamie Burton (West Ham fan)

Why are you looking forward to visiting the ground?

I have visited Fratton Park before following West Ham and had enjoyed it then. As both my Wife and Father-In-Law are both Portsmouth fans and Season Ticket Holders I was extremely keen to see a hopeful West Ham demolition job on the “Blue Army” of Hampshire.
 
How easy was the journey/finding the ground/car parking?

The journey itself is easy enough, straight down the A3, onto the M27 West bound, then off at the next junction the A2030 (Eastern Road), continue down this road until the end and there is Fratton Park in front of you. Parking is pretty much street parking, there is a large pay car park behind the Fratton End, but if you arrive early enough you’ll find a spot close by.
 
What did you do before the game?

As you come down the Eastern Road, the first pub you come across is The Good Companion on you left.  I got dropped off here and found it pretty much full of Hammers fans, with a few Portsmouth fans in there as well.  This is a traditionally large pub with a great atmosphere.  The bar staff did seem to be a bit few in number, but did a grand job in coping with the never ending beer requests.
 
What were your thoughts on the grounds away end?

I had a ticket in the away end and West Ham had sold out their whole allocation of 3,200 which was the whole stand behind the goal.  Now I like Fratton Park, it is dated but it’s a proper old school football stadium, with its’ four separate stands that are all close to the pitch and high in the sky floodlights.  If you like your football venues from yesteryear, this one is worth a visit.  Since the club have put a roof on top of this stand, a hell of a racket can now be made, in comparison to years when it was open to the elements. I did find the famous Pompey atmosphere did seem to be missing, as it appeared that all the songs were originating only from the Fratton End opposite.
 
Comments on the game, stewards, pies, toilets?

The game itself had the makings of a very entertaining affair on paper.  But unfortunately did not live up to it.  A penalty dispatched by Mark Noble in the first half decided matters.  I found both the Stewards and Police very helpful and not over-the-top in policing us. The facilities in this stand are well documented in reviews like this, meaning that there is Gents and Ladies at each end of the stand and if you need to go, be prepared to queue all of the half time interval. Read the same for getting refreshments, I did not even attempt to get into this queue. Getting out the ground after the game took ages, maybe this was due to the large away contingent, but all three home stands had long since dispersed, by the time I got out and I was not in the middle of the stand.
 
Summary of the day:

I enjoyed my visit to Fratton Park and would definitely go again.  I saw no trouble before or after the game, the Portsmouth fans I know are all a great bunch.  But as with all grounds if you are an away fan and you chose to walk down the roads outside the ground shouting and singing your club’s songs and you come unstuck, you only have yourself to blame.

Portsmouth v Coventry City
Championship League
Saturday December 3rd 2011, 3pm
Alex Smith (Coventry City fan)

1. Why were you looking forward to visiting the ground (or not if the case may be):
 
Portsmouth was a ground and place I was looking forward to since the fixtures were released. I had never been to Pompey before and I wanted to visit as the way things are going we might not be in the same league next season, so I wouldn't get the chance to visit for a while.
 
2. How easy was the journey/finding the ground/car parking:
 
Me and my Dad went on the train. It was a long and quite a complicated journey; We left Coventry station at 8.31am, on a London bound train to Euston. At Euston we then got on the tube to London Waterloo, where we boarded a train to Portsmouth Harbour. This train seemed to stop at every station between London and Portsmouth, which seemed to take forever. After finally arriving at Portsmouth Harbour and with a bit of time on our hands we went to the docks to look at the warships that were in port. After doing this we headed back to the station and took a taxi up to Fratton Park.
 
3. What did you do before the game pub/chippy?
 
We managed to get to Fratton Park just as the Coventry team were arriving on their team coach and I managed to see them as they got off and went into the ground via the Players Entrance. With still sometime before kick off, we walked to the Good Companion pub, which was good.
 
4. What was your thoughts on the ground away end then other sides of the ground:
 
The away stand wasn't the greatest looking, especially as the walk up to it was rather muddy. The other sides looked better and the old Main Stand looked unusual especially with the tv cameras perched right up on its roof. If you get chance go and look at the main entrance to Fratton Park, it looks like some old cottage rather than a football ground entrance.
 
5. Comments on game stewards pies toilets.
 
I did try a burger but it wasn't great. I was rather annoyed after standing up to sing 'twist and shout' that a steward tapped me on the shoulder and tells me to sit down, which I thought was outrageous. Other Cov fans too were also being asked to sit down which led to a few unnecessary confrontations between the stewards and fans.

As for the game, then the Sky Blues started off poor and things got worse as in the 35th minute Pompey were awarded a hotly disputed penalty, which was duly converted by Erik Husselklepp. The second half was better for |Coventry and in the 67th minute we equalised through Llukas Jutkiewiczt. However we did our usual trick by concedeing not after scoring and Pompey won the game 2-1 .
 
Leaving the ground after the game all we had to do is walk to Fratton train station and then get the train to Portsmouth Harbour and get back to Waterloo so it was easy.
 
6. Summary of the day:
 
Generally very good, although disappointed with the food at the ground and the stewards!

Portsmouth v Blackpool
Championship League
Saturday September 24th 2011, 3pm
Dean Williamson (Blackpool fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

Fratton Park was to be my 40th away ground. It was also the first time I'd watch football on the South Coast.

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

We drove down and found the best option was to park at nearby Hilsea train station and get the train to Fratton. The car park is free all weekend and the trains are every 10 minutes. We didn't pay a fare there or on the way back but it would normally be £2.30 for adults and £1.10 for children. The train takes approx 5 minutes and follows a reasonably scenic route. However, if you want to discover all of Portsmouth (I.e Spinnaker Tower) I would suggest parking in the City Centre as the football ground is a couple of miles from the sea front.

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

We went to The Red White And Blue pub before the game which was away fan friendly and had two cask ales on for real ale fans. The pub is situated on Fawcett Road and is a 10minute walk from the train station or 20minute walk to the football ground. They also serves a selection of bar snacks such as hot rolls. The home fans were friendly and were quick to assist with directions. Being a naval town they were quite boisterous throughout the day.

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

Fratton Park is an old school ground in every sense. To get to the away end there is a very small alley you have to walk along, if coming from the city centre, this could cause chaos on a busy day. The away end also backs onto residential gardens and the stadium almost appears to have sprung up in the middle of a housing estate. Aside from this, the  South Stand is fairly modern, but the rest of the stands are a lot older and some bits are basically terraces with seats bolted in. There is lots of leg room and you can create a great atmosphere in the away end. With most of the ground corners being open (apart from one corner beside the away section), the stadium does have an open feel to it and it is a great sun trap on a hot day as it was for us. The three older stands could really do with a lick of paint and the sound equipment updating as there was no music at half time.

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, toilets etc..

This was the first time the sides had in seven years so there is little rivalry between the fans and resulted in a low attendance. The game itself was fairly uneventful and I experienced the very definition of being 'robbed' at a football match as Portsmouth scored with literally the last kick of the game after, what I felt was, a dominating performance from us.

I was most looking forward to hearing the 'Pompey Chimes' and this did surface in the second half. Although I couldn't see where 'John Portsmouth Football Club Westwood' was sat, I could hear his bell! The travelling seasiders did their part in creating lots of noise but the game was a little lacklustre and so this mellowed the atmosphere. There were no incidents to speak of with the stewards, which is how it should be at a match. I had a steak and Kidney pie and bottle of water combo at £5 and there was other meal deals of this kind. I would advise to eat away from the ground as there are many eateries around Fratton Park. Finally, the toilets were of a good standard and there was no queues when gaining access.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

We caught the train back to Hilsea but do not be put off my the large queues as many different trains go through Fratton and therefore not all will be going on the same train as you. There was little traffic when exiting the city. 

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out: 

I had a good day out in Portsmouth mixing with their friendly fans. Even a few Blackpool sailors turned up who had just docked in the bay. This is a ground to tick off the list for anyone but be warned it is a huge journey from the North! 

Portsmouth v Barnet
Carling Cup, 1st Round
Tuesday, August 9th 2011, 7.45pm
James Sweeney (Barnet fan)

Why you were looking forward to going to the ground: 
I was planning on taking a family holiday to Bournemouth, so I was delighted when Barnet drew Portsmouth in the Carling Cup. We did not hesitate to make the short trip along the M27 to Fratton Park with the Barnet army.

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?  The journey was very straightforward. From Bournemouth, you take the A338, A31, M27 and A2030 which takes you directly to the stadium. There is a car park behind one end at the ground which is quite large and got a space at a cost of £4.

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?
We took our place in the away end and the home fans and club staff seemed welcoming. I bought the matchday programme which was a good read. There were quite a few making the trip down from North London and we were certainly making a lot of noise.

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?
When I first walked through the gates, I could see it was a good sized ground which had 4 all seated stands. The Barnet fans were allocated half of the North Stand where we made lots of noise and bought black and amber balloons and ribbon which we threw around the stand when the teams came out. 

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc.. 
Barnet surprisingly won 1-0 thanks to an early goal from Jason Price although Portsmouth continued to press us, they couldn't find a breakthrough. We didn't really press their box in the second half but we managed to hold on to progress to the second round where we were drawn away to Burnley later in the month.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
There was a lot of traffic heading back onto the A2030 but this was expected. Once we were back on the M27, we made it back to Bournemouth for 10.30pm and we wasn't even tired knowing we had a great win at a higher league club.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
It was a brilliant result, with a great atmosphere from the travelling Barnet fans and if the two sides were to play again, I would not hesitate to make my way down to Fratton Park again. 

Portsmouth v Leicester City
Premier League
Friday September 24th 2010, 7.45pm
Andrew Daffern (Leicester City fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

Well Portsmouth was a city that I had always wanted to visit as well as Fratton park, which would be another tick off my ground list. At this time Portsmouth were in serious debt & could be on the verge of liquidation, so we made sure that we went to fixture just in case this would be Leicester last trip to Fratton in a while.

The game was scheduled to be played on a Friday night due to Sky televising the match. This meant that a number of Leicester fans would be forced to take a day off work to get to attend this fixture. Another surprising thing was Leicester had also been drawn away to Portsmouth in the league cup in that same week at Portsmouth (what are the chances of that!), we had won that game 2-1.

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

Luckily I managed to get some time off college and decided to book a weekend away in Portsmouth, staying in a Travelodge. We left good old sunny Nuneaton at just gone ten, It was first a local service train to Coventry, then a Virgin Train to Southampton & then another local service train To Portsmouth. Arriving into Portsmouth for 2pm (Very long journey, Tired!), we went straight to our hotel what seemed quite away from the city centre so we forced into jumping into a taxi. After having a wash & a bite to eat me & my father left for ground at half five. Sadly yet again on our away ground travels, we noted that there were not many signs pointing the direction of the stadium. Luckily we were prepared, as we had brought our own map. Once in the right direction, you could see the floodlights of the ground from quite some way, away. Also there were a few burger vans outside the ground so don’t complain about lack of food!

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

We didn't come across any pubs near to Fratton Park, so we just got a bacon roll from a burger van and a programme that seemed very good for the Championship, including a detailed history about our club. We got to the stadium quite early so they’re wasn’t many fans around,  however we got to talk to a couple just before going into the away section and they seemed very friendly.

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

The away end entrance is covered in a long wall of painted pictures of Portsmouth legends what is good to see more clubs should look to do this. We got through the turnstiles and then you have to walk up some stone built stairs to get into the stand, to be honest I thought that the stands were not that big and some looked quite old and dated.

The end opposite to us, the Fratton End though did look quite impressive  and this is where most of the noise from the home fans was coming from. The view from the away end was reasonable the only downer is that if your at the front row you have to look up at the pitch which is very unsual.

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, toilets etc..

We started the game as usual poorly, just couldn’t put a pass together, constantly losing possession. Morrison stupidly gave a penalty away by handballing in the box and Lawrence for Pompey converted the penalty to put the home side one up. After that Leicester were hanging on and things weren't helped with one of our team being sent off. Lawrence grabbed another to make it 2-0. By half time the boo’s had started from the away supporters, the team looked completely different from the side that had won here three days previously. Not many Leicester fans had made the trip I was later told just over 500 fans had attended the game. There were a lot of empty seats around us in the away end.

To get to the food & toilets you have to walk half way down the stairs, to a small food area is like a little box that served no alcohol or not much food, very poor!, the toilets were quite small I reckon you could only get 20 people at once., The stewards were friendly & helpful they took you right do your seat if your lost.

The second half was even worse! We conceded two quick goals before pulling one back. But once the fifth went in, we like a number of other Foxes fans began heading for the exits. Whilst walking away from the ground we heard another roar and we knew it was then 6-1.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Leaving the ground we felt very disappointed, to say the least. It was quiet around the ground as it was only mostly Leicester fans that had left early.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Well felt down for the rest of the weekend, but viewing the historical sights around Portsmouth still made the trip worthwhile. The result put us bottom of the League and in my mind it is time for the manager to go. I’m not 100% sure if I would visit Portsmouth again but you never know.

Why not write your own review of Fratton Park Portsmouth and have it included in the Guide? Find out more about submitting a Fans Football Ground Review.

Updated 7th September 2016

 

 

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