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Michael Taylor 29th Aug 2009 - 11:35

Al-Fahim no match for City’s financial clout

Sheik Sulaiman Al-Fahim, the proud new owner of Portsmouth, may be rich enough to rescue the struggling southerners this year but, compared to Man City's wealth, Doc has little to shout about.

Al-Fahim, for the second season in a row, found himself on the back pages of all the English papers as he moved swiftly in his acquisition of debt ridden Portsmouth.

Signings just as swiftly followed but, unfortunately for Pompey, it wasn't the likes of Robinho making his way to Fratton Park, it was Michael Brown, Tommy Smith, Kevin Prince-Boateng and Jamie O'Hara.

It's all a far cry from his rise to fame as the front man in Abu Dhabi United's takeover of Sunday's visitors to the south coast, Man City - a role that he was later removed from.

At least Al-Fahim has promised to take on the club's debt; a problem that was threatening potential disaster for the 2008 FA Cup champions. I just hope Pompey's faithful following aren't hoping an instant revolution because it isn't going to come.

The sense of irony in Portsmouth and City meeting in the very week that Pompey became Arab makes for great stories and comparisons but you have to believe that Mark Hughes' team of all-stars is going to be far too strong.

Emmanuel Adebayor has made a terrific start to life in Lancashire after his £25million move from Arsenal and he looks a great bet at 4/1 to open the scoring for the third Premier League game in a row.

The Togo star has wasted little time in forging a dream partnership with Carlos Tevez and Robinho and he could thrive against Portsmouth's leaky defence.

As for Tevez, he looked electric as he notched his first goal for the club in their 2-0 league cup win over Crystal Palace in mid-week.

The diminutive Argentine deserved his goal after an all-action performance and you can expect more of the same on Sunday - and you can be rewarded with 5/4 if he scores during the game.

It should all prove too much for Paul Hart's men even if they play up to the new found expectation around the club.

Out of their new signings I'm expecting O'Hara to shine while Michael Brown should provide some good experience in the middle of the park.

However, and this cannot be overlooked, their defence was absolutely appalling in last week's battering at the Emirates.

Time and time again Arsenal ripped through the Sol Campbell-less back four leaving David James stranded all too often in a 4-1 romp.

And to make things worse, there isn't exactly a lot to fear for Joleon Lescott and City's back-line with Pompey's main threat appearing to be the little know New Caledonian Frederic Piquionne - a risky 9/1 first goalscorer shot.

I much prefer the look of the 10/11 about an away clean sheet - it's not quite buying money but it could come very close.

Looking at the correct score market there is some good value to be found, no more so than the 11/1 about a 3-0 City win while 11/2 about 2-0 also looks inviting.

It looks like the revolution may not get off to the best start for Portsmouth but at least they appear have the finances required to survive in the Premier League for a good few years to come.

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