Sullivan: We can be Pompey heroes

131840-4072_POMPEY_TRAINING'Pompey return to pre-season training at St John's College playing fields, Farlington, Portsmouth.''Picture: Allan Hutchings
131840-4072_POMPEY_TRAINING'Pompey return to pre-season training at St John's College playing fields, Farlington, Portsmouth.''Picture: Allan Hutchings

John Sullivan surveyed the road back to the top for Pompey and vowed: We can be heroes.

The Blues keeper has his sights set on re-establishing his new club in the English game following his arrival from Charlton.

And the 25-year-old knows the adulation of the Fratton faithful will be the reward for turning the club’s fortunes around.

Sullivan is aware of the woes Pompey have faced in recent years – as they fought for their existence.

He admitted the appeal of putting Guy Whittingham’s side back where they belong was a key factor in his move to Fratton Park.

The former Brighton man sensed the energy building around the Blues as the countdown to the new campaign gathers pace.

Sullivan said: ‘It’s a real exciting time.

‘Let’s be honest, there was a stage where we thought there may never be a Portsmouth.

‘No, we don’t want to be in League Two but, at the same time, the fans want to see a winning team.

‘If there’s a winning team they will turn up in their numbers.

‘If we’re not doing it they are entitled to let us know but I’ve heard what they are like and how they stay with you.

‘And with the squad we have here giving 100 per cent for the shirt – win, lose or draw – I don’t think there will be a problem.

‘One of the best things about coming to this club is it can’t go any further down.

‘I have read up on what happened here and looked through it all.

‘I spoke to John Keeley, who is good friend, about it all. It was terrible.

‘I heard about people taking pay cuts and all the uncertainty.

‘But that’s in the past now and we are in a good position.

‘We have the chance to be heroes here – everyone knows that.

‘It’s not going to be easy but I already get that vibe.

‘People come up to you and know you here, so we have that responsibility. It’s a great chance.

‘Everyone is already smiling around the place.

‘It’s a massive opportunity on the pitch and it’s up to us to do the business.’

Despite setting the bar high when it comes to next season’s ambitions, Sullivan is under no illusions about the size of the task Pompey face. He knows all about the League Two terrain after a stint at AFC Wimbledon last season.

‘When I first came and walked around here I saw Sol Campbell and David James shirts everywhere and pictures of winning the FA Cup,’ he said.

‘That’s brilliant, it really is – but we’re in League Two and this time next year we want to be in League One.

‘It’s going to take a big push from everyone.

‘It’s going to be hard. It’s going to be relentless.

‘We are going to be one of the stronger teams – but there are so many more factors than that.

‘We are going to be playing Saturday-Tuesday-Saturday all the time.

‘But the coaching staff are spot on and we can help each other through it.’