The journos at the Evening Standard report that Andy O’Brien, formerly of Portsmouth and now comfortably ensconced at Bolton, reckons that when he was at Pompey manager ‘Arry Redknapp treated him atrociously.
O’Brien reportedly suffered the indignity of not only being dropped by Redknapp but having his shirt number changed from five to 33, a not-so-subtle sign that you are no longer in the manager’s long-term plans. And O’Brien claimed that after Redknapp brutally slashed him from the first team, he found it nigh on impossible to attract interest from any clubs as most thought the reason for his extended absence from the Portsmouth team was because of severe injury. Which probably explains why he is now at cr*ptastic Bolton. O’Brien said:
”I don’t think Harry was very honest with me and he treated me like a mug for quite a long time at Portsmouth. I never doubted myself or my ability but it is fair to say that your confidence dips and you get frustrated.
”I came to pre-season training and found my squad number had changed from five to 33, which was about the biggest one you could get. I had opportunities to leave but it was hard because I was not playing. In the end I’m grateful to Sammy Lee for giving me a chance at Bolton.’
Redknapp can be criticised for being rude to O’Brien – but in a footballing sense the Portsmouth boss is pretty much untouchable (unless you are the police) thanks to his team’s white-hot form.