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Adams named new Portsmouth boss

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I am ready for Portsmouth challenge - Adams

Tony Adams has been confirmed as the new manager of Portsmouth following the departure of Harry Redknapp.

"I'm very honoured, it's a great opportunity," he said. "I would have been mad to turn it down."

And the 42-year-old vowed to do everything he could to keep first-team coach Joe Jordan at the club.

"Joe is Portsmouth through and through, he's part of the woodwork," said Adams. "But he's a big man and will make his own decision."

With Adams yet to name his number two at Fratton Park, his former Arsenal team-mate Martin Keown has been linked with the position.

Keown has completed the requisite coaching courses but said that he has not been contacted by Adams.

I'm scared to bits but another bit of me is really excited - it's like Christmas, it's the best job in the world, I couldn't sleep last night

Portsmouth manager Tony Adams

"It's not a call I've had to take," the former defender told BBC 5 Live.

"It would be a life-changing decision to go into football but I've not had to make that decision because I've not had any offers yet."

Adams had refused to comment on the speculation over the assistant manager's position but added: "I'm going to take my time. I've got Joe and Paul Groves [reserve-team coach]."

Adams took charge of the team alongside Jordan for Sunday's 1-1 draw with Fulham following Redknapp's move to White Hart Lane.

The former Arsenal and England defender was named as Redknapp's number two in 2006, after an ill-fated spell in charge of Wycombe and coaching jobs in the Netherlands with Feyenoord and Utrecht.

"We've got some great players here at Portsmouth and I've been kind of responsible, with Harry, for bringing them to the club," said Adams.

"It is a risk because Harry's done a fantastic job for this club and he is a hard act to follow. But I think it is my time, I think I am ready."

Former Bolton and Newcastle boss Sam Allardyce and ex-Chelsea manager Avram Grant, who worked as technical director at Fratton Park in 2006, were reportedly among the favourites to take over from Redknapp.

TONY ADAMS
Playing career:
Arsenal (1983-2002)
League title 1989, 1991, 1998, 2002
FA Cup 1993, 1998, 2002
League Cup 1987, 1993
Cup Winners' Cup 1994
England (1987-2000)
66 caps, five goals
World Cup 1998
European Championships 1988, 1996, 2000
Managerial career:
Wycombe Wanderers (05/11/03-09/11-04)
League P 46, W 9, D 20, L 17
FA Cup P 3, W 1, D 1, L 1
Carling Cup P 1, L 1
FA Trophy P 3, W 2, L 1
Feyenoord (2005) coaching role
Utrecht (2006) coaching role
Portsmouth (28/06/06-28/10/08) assistant manager
Portsmouth (28/10/08 to present)

But Pompey chief executive Peter Storrie insisted Adams was the best man for the job.

"Right from the beginning I liked the idea of continuity," said Storrie. "Although Harry was the manager it was always about three or four of the coaches working together.

The right and correct thing was to see who else was available but I couldn't see anything better than Tony and that's why we decided he was the man to go for.

"We hope Tony will be here for as long as he wants to be here. He's an icon in the game of football. We will give him all the support we can and we hope he will do a great job."

Storrie had said on Sunday that the south-coast club would take their time in finding a new manager, but revealed that the "huge, huge shock" of Redknapp's departure to Tottenham made a quick appointment imperative.

Adams begins his reign as Portsmouth boss with a trip to league leaders Liverpool at Anfield on Wednesday.

Speculation linking a number of Portsmouth players with moves to Spurs in January has already begun, but Adams says he will fight to keep hold of the those he wants to remain at Fratton Park.

"They're here because they're good players and other clubs will be interested in good players," he said. "But my job is to keep them here and to get them to play well.

"At the moment they're responding well - they might not like me but at the moment it's going well."

Adams rejected the suggestion that he had been affected by his disappointing experience at Wycombe, where he won only 12 of his 53 games in charge, losing 20.

"I'm one of those annoying people who gets back up. I didn't know what way it's going to go but sooner or later I was going to get an opportunity to manage a very good team.

606: DEBATE
Craig1000
"At Wycombe my job was to save the club - they were losing 6,000 a week at the time but this is a different ball game.

"This is the next step for me. It's like Christmas. It's the best job in the world. I'm scared to bits, of course, but another bit of me is really excited. I couldn't sleep last night.

"I would have been gutted not to get the job but thanks to them [Storrie and Portsmouth owner Alexandre Gaydamak] for having the courage to put me in place.

"Harry is a tough man to follow and sometimes it [a number two becoming a number one] doesn't work.

"But I think this is my time. I've got great support from the owner, Peter, the fans, my wife, my family and the players. It gives me fantastic optimism that it will be OK."

Storrie reiterated that the club was not faced with financial problems: "The club is fine, we're moving on, the owner is here and he continues to put money into the club."

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see also
Wenger backing Adams to succeed
28 Oct 08 |  Portsmouth
Redknapp booed by Portsmouth fans
28 Oct 08 |  Hampshire
Portsmouth 1-1 Fulham
26 Oct 08 |  Premier League
Sunday's football photos
26 Oct 08 |  Football
Tottenham sack Ramos for Redknapp
26 Oct 08 |  Tottenham
Redknapp and Ramos in photos
26 Oct 08 |  Football
Adams agrees new Pompey contract
04 Jun 08 |  Portsmouth


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