'Incredibly sad' - reaction to the death of ex-Pompey manager Jim Smith
Tuesday, 10th Dec 2019 22:10 by pompey-fans.com staff
Pompey say the death of former manager Jim Smith is 'incredibly sad'.
Smith, who has died at the age of 79, had a successful four-year spell as Pompey manager in the 1990s and returned almost a decade later to help Harry Redknapp guide the team to promotion to the Premier League.
Fans and former players have been quick to pay tribute to the Bald Eagle.
He was remembered in a tribute put out by the club which said: 'Pompey are mourning the death of former manager Jim Smith, who passed away earlier today at the age of 79.
‘The Bald Eagle was in charge at Fratton Park between 1991 and 1995, guiding a young side to within a few minutes of the FA Cup final. Darren Anderton’s extra-time goal looked to be sending the Blues to Wembley in 1992, but Liverpool equalised late on at Highbury and then won on penalties in the Villa Park replay.
'Smith’s men then went agonisingly close to reaching the Premier League the following season, but they missed out on automatic promotion on the final day and then lost in the play-offs.
'He had earlier taken charge of Boston, Colchester, Blackburn, Birmingham, Oxford, QPR and Newcastle before replacing Pompey’s caretaker boss Tony Barton. Departing midway through the 1994/95 campaign, Smith would then lead Derby into the top-flight after a spell as chief executive of the League Managers’ Association.
'He later returned to Fratton Park as Harry Redknapp’s assistant, helping Pompey secure promotion the Division One title and promotion to the Premier League in 2002/03.
'The thoughts of everyone at Portsmouth Football Club are with Jim’s family and friends at this incredibly sad time.'