Former Pompey striker passes away
Portsmouth Football Club were saddened to learn of the death of Ron Davies, who played for the Blues between 1973 and 1975.
The former striker, who would have been 71 on May 25, passed away just before his birthday in the United States, which had been his home since retiring from football.
After beginning his career at Chester and then moving to Norwich, it was at Pompey’s south coast rivals Southampton where Ron really made his mark, scoring 153 goals in seven years at the club.
So it was a high-profile signing when John Mortimore brought the Wales international to Fratton Park in the spring of 1973 for a fee of £38,000.
Chairman John Deacon was splashing the cash at that time, also signing exciting winger Peter Marinello from Arsenal for £100,000, as well as another Wales international, defender Phil Roberts, from Bristol Rovers for £55,000.
They all made their Pompey debuts in a testimonial against West Ham for loyal servant Albert McCann.
Davies instantly won over the Fratton faithful, netting a hat-trick in front of 22,000 supporters as the Blues beat their first division opponents.
That was the only time Ron would don the traditional royal blue for Pompey, as the following season – the club’s 75th anniversary – saw a change of strip to white with vertical blue stripes, which was used for both his seasons with the Blues.
The West Ham victory and big-money signings raised expectations, but they were never realised as the side struggled during the 1973/74 campaign.
Despite a bottom-half finish, Davies chipped in with 16 league and cup goals in 50 appearances.
Mortimore was replaced by Ian St John early the following season and after five goals in 19 games during another season of struggle, Ron was offered the chance to sign for Manchester United, with George Graham moving in the opposite direction.
Davies had scored at Old Trafford in a 2-1 defeat earlier in the season, with the mighty Red Devils having sunk into the second division.
Everyone at Portsmouth Football Club would like to offer their condolences to Ron’s family and friends.