Portsmouth's Saturday night sports newspaper facing prospect of final whistle at the end of this football season

Neil Allen, chief sports writer with the Portsmouth News, said the final whistle of the football season could signal the demise of the Sports Mail. The weekly title has a circulation of 2,700 which Allen says is too few to guarantee survival.

The paper was scrapped three-and-a-half years ago when circulation plunged to 3,700. It was resurrected in 2013 when bosses pledged to donate 10p to the Pompey Supporters’ Trust for every issue purchased.

It is believed to be one of only two Saturday evening sports newspapers left in the UK, with the other being the Southern Daily Echo's Sports Pink.

Now Allen has issued a rallying cry to Pompey fans to save the  title once more.

He said: “Since returning, we will have raised around £40,000 for Pompey's Academy, with 10p from every copy donated to the club.

“However, falling sales are threatening its existence beyond this football season. It's not looking good.

"Developments in technology and the ability to receive instant information, rather than wait until 5pm to painstakingly study that day’s results, have transformed the landscape.

“Why queue for copies outside the local newsagent on a Saturday evening when an iPhone and internet access is largely as thorough? Unless more fans can commit themselves to heading out to pick up a copy every week, then come Saturday, May 7, when Northampton visit Fratton Park, it could be the final whistle for a sports paper which first saw light in 1903.”

But Allen said no jobs are at risk if the title goes under.

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