Connolly’s Pompey pledge

Pompey striker David Connolly Picture: Joe Pepler
Pompey striker David Connolly Picture: Joe Pepler

David Connolly is happy to play on at Pompey.

The Blues striker spoke of his desire to continue scoring goals at a home where he is respected.

And the 36-year-old vowed he still has the fitness to trouble opposing defences.

Connolly is vying for a place up front at Morecambe this weekend after changing the game against Mansfield following his second-half introduction.

The man who has hit 12 goals in 27 starts since arriving last January, feels that sent a timely reminder to Richie Barker of his quality.

Barker last month beat Connolly to the Pompey manager’s job after Guy Whittingham’s sacking.

Connolly stated he has no problem playing on under the man who pipped him to the post after both were interviewed for the position.

But he admitted he feels it’s important to be appreciated.

Connolly said: ‘You want to be treated with the respect you deserve and so forth.

‘I’ll keep playing as long as I’m appreciated. I’m sure that’s the case.

‘I know the fans appreciate me and I enjoy it when I get out on the pitch – and I still want to get out there.

‘I’m concentrating on doing my best for the club and the fans. I’ll leave the rest for others to ponder.

‘If I’m selected great, if not I’ll do my best when I get the opportunity.

‘It’s up to the manager who he selects and there are plenty of players to choose from 

‘We’ll see what happens at the weekend.’

Connolly has made two starts and three appearances off the bench in Barker’s seven games in charge.

He dismissed any question marks over his conditioning and vowed he remains one of the fittest players at Fratton.

Connolly said: ‘I’m fine. I think too much is made of whether I train or don’t train, to be honest.

‘I trained this week, last week, the week before and all over the Christmas period.

‘At the moment you can’t train sometimes because of the rain or being on artificial surfaces.

‘Some people are ill, some are injured and some are moving house. I’m no different, so I don’t think I should be spoke about differently. Do 
I have to justify myself? I didn’t know there is a Connolly watch.

‘I may be nearly 37 but we do body fats. I’ve got the second lowest at the club.

‘We do fitness work in the summer. I was in the top three.

‘To be honest, though, it’s more in the mind than anything. I’ve trained for 20 years. You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.

‘Whether I shoot 100 balls a day or none my finishing will be the same and my touch will be the same.

‘In football you aren’t all robots. It’s down to your brain. Your brain doesn’t slow down if you don’t train.

‘Some people have an intelligent football brain and some haven’t. You can’t train it.’