Good things come to those who wait. While many may have lost faith that they’d make it to the very top by the age of 31, Kevin-Prince Boateng is going to be rewarded for his years of not-quite-hard work alongside the occasional worldy with a stint at Barcelona.
The Catalans are apparently hard up for squad depth, but no one would’ve expected them to call on the Ghanaian and former Portsmouth plodder – well he might have himself. Since leaving the Premier League though he’s had more clubs that a seal-hunting expedition, and most recently has been toiling away in Serie A for Sassuolo.
It’s fair to say we haven’t been this dumbfounded at a pairing since Fergie looked up Moyesey’s number.
It got us thinking, who else from Pompey’s premier past could bulk up the squad in Barca?
The giant goal-grabber, who is still earning a crust in the Championship at Stoke, will surely end up stuffed and mounted in a museum some day as the perfect example of “Big Man Who’s Surprisingly Good With His Feet”. Who else would you prefer to back up Messi and Suarez, offering a plan b when the greatest player in the game can’t unlock Alaves or Vgo away, than Crouchy?
But perhaps a bit more grit is required. There are a few tougher around than the former West Ham man, who was given his first team debut at Pompey by one Tony Pulis at the age of 16.
If that doesn’t say you’re hard as granite what does?
He’s still playing too, for Bolton in Championship, and could bring some toughness and endeavour to the Barcelona midfield.
Though clearly enojoying his retirement, the Croatian playmaker undoubtedly still has the natural talent to be able to show up with a pair of boots and a bottle of Lucozade Sport and tog out at the Nou Camp like it was a Wednesday evening astroturf sesh.
He spent one glorious year dazzling Division 1 defenders in 2001-02 as Portsmouth struggled to stave off relegation to what is now League One. He’s still revered among by fans of the club for his one campaign – and best of all, he played for Barca before, so he knows his way about.
We all know Messi isn’t getting any younger and likes to maximise his effort by minimising his running (he’s a bit lazy, basically), and Suarez just can’t hack it any more as the terrier up from – and we do mean that literally, Giorgio.
Benjani’s had a few years rest since retiring in 2014 – he’s surely ready to take up the challenge of leading the line at the Nou Camp, just like he did at Fratton Park at his peak. Even though he didn’t score in his first 14 game for Portsmouth, the Zimbabwean became a huge fan favourite straight away for his tireless effort and work for the team.
Though we all know where the problems really are at these big clubs – upstairs. It seems you can hardly turn your eyes away from Catalunya or you’ll miss some shady dealing or tax trouble for the club.
And Portsmouth have experienced their fair share of hardship through the years, so who better than Pompey director and TV presenter Fred Dinenage to sort out the boardroom at Barca and get the club’s management back on track?
We’re sure all his work on crime documentaries for the less-visited Sky channels has prepared him for any horror, but he’ll need all his powers of deduction to figure out just what the f**k is going on with this signing?
Kevin-Prince Boateng to Barcelona is really happening. Really.