The crowd chanted his name – then they sung about his weight.
But the prospective manager of Pompey still relished his return to the Fratton turf he knows so well.
Guy Whittingham appeared as a substitute in the 79th minute against IBV on Tuesday night.
He entered the action along with Mark Kelly, Svetoslav Todorov and Linvoy Primus to add more nostalgia to a superb occasion.
Kelly toiled away in midfield, Primus was his ever-dependable self at the back, while Todorov missed a sitter in front of the Fratton end.
As for Whittingham, he helped give a touch of humour to proceedings, even if it was not his intention.
The Pompey legend’s good-natured interaction with the crowd was a highlight as the match drew to a close.
At one point he cupped his ear in response to crowd songs focusing on his weight, wearing a broad smile as he did so.
Hardly respectful towards the next permanent manager of the football club.
But Whittingham enjoyed the banter with the supporters he knows so well, on what proved to be a superb night of fund-raising for the Pompey Supporters’ Trust.
He said: ‘I played 11 minutes. Then five minutes of added time was put up.
‘I thought “what is he going on, I can’t believe that!”
‘I said to Paul Hardyman “we only want 10 minutes at the end” and he puts another five up!
‘Still, it was just a bit of fun, that’s all, on a really good occasion for the football club.
‘I cannot believe I didn’t get man of the match, though! I thought I gave the opposition plenty of the ball to give us a lot of stringent testing and tried to give it away as much as I could.
‘I showed I’ve got a stepover or two in my locker as well.
‘It was the warm-up that did me in, though. I was tired after that.
‘When the crowd chanted “you fat so and so” that hurt a little bit.
‘I tried to pull my shorts up to cover it but that didn’t work!
‘But it was all in good humour and a really good night for everyone concerned.’