Pulis wants FA to help out Pompey

Pulis wants FA to help out Pompey

Published Feb. 21, 2010 12:40 a.m. ET

Stoke boss Tony Pulis has called on the FA to ensure Portsmouth finish the season after his 10-man side earned a 2-1 triumph at Fratton Park.

Salif Diao netted a winner for the Potters in the first minute of stoppage time. This was after Robert Huth's header five minutes into the second half cancelled out Frederic Piquionne's opener for Portsmouth after 35 minutes.

Pompey's woes were compounded by the fact Stoke had Andy Wilkinson sent off for a second yellow card after 73 minutes, and they failed to take advantage.

But this defeat is the least of the home team's worries as they face a winding-up petition from HM Revenue and Customs in the High Court early next month.

Portsmouth's attempts to sell players outside of the transfer window to balance their books were thwarted by the Premier League on Friday.

However, former Fratton Park manager Pulis has called on the sport's governing body to make sure Pompey are able to complete their fixtures.

He said: "It's such a famous football club - a great football club. I was very, very privileged and lucky to have managed it for nine months and I really enjoyed it here.

"Is very important they keep it going because 250,000 people live around this area and people support this club from thousands of miles away.

"They wake up every morning to find out what their club is doing and it is their football club.

"I think the FA have a responsibility to themselves, as well as this football club, to make sure it keeps going.

"But they also have to investigate how this has happened. It has not happened at a third division club; it has happened at a Premier League club.

"The money coming into this club has been phenomenal if you look at it. So the baton is there for them to pick up.

"But the most important thing before they do that is to keep the place going until the end of the season."

Despite his calls for Pompey to survive, Pulis admits he had deep reservations about their plan to sell players to other Premier League clubs outside of the transfer window.

But he admits another means of helping Pompey keep their heads above water must be found.

He said: "I think it's a very, very contentious issue given the effect it will have on other clubs in the Premier League.

"If it affects the survival of other clubs, you can't do it. They're breaking all the rules really.

"But there has to be a way around it. I don't know how you do it or how you find it.

"The people at the FA have got more knowledge and understanding of the situation than I have. They have an enormous responsibility, for me, to keep the club going."

While Pompey boss Avram Grant would have been relieved to keep his threadbare squad intact, he admits key central defender Younes Kaboul's January move to Tottenham cost his side dearly against Stoke.

Huth comfortably out-jumped the giant Frenchman's replacement, Marc Wilson, to net the Potters' first goal, and Grant admits Pompey badly miss his aerial presence.

He said: "Since Kaboul left, we have lost a tall player to defend set pieces with and this is the second week we have conceded a goal from a set play.

"We missed Younes and this is the reason I wanted the whole squad to stay.

"We play good football but in England, set pieces are especially important.

"Since he left, we haven't brought in another player who is just as high. It's a problem."