Appleton in dark over Pompey departures

Liam Lawrence remains a key asset for Pompey. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (120332-2607)
Liam Lawrence remains a key asset for Pompey. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (120332-2607)
Samantha Quayle. Picture: Jordan Hampton

Flying start for Pompey with Cardiff swept aside

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The clock is ticking, yet Michael Appleton remains in the dark over how many of his Pompey stars will be sold off.

The January transfer window slams shut at 11pm tomorrow.

Jason Pearce, Joel Ward, Stephen Henderson, Dave Kitson and Ryan Williams have all been linked with moves away.

Other assets include Liam Lawrence, Greg Halford and Luke Varney.

The likes of Pearce and Ward continue to attract interest from Ipswich, although Appleton insists he has heard nothing for almost two weeks.

Regardless, Paul Jewell was present at London Road on Saturday to see the duo impress in the 3-0 victory. And the likelihood is players will have to depart, with a £1.6m tax bill to be paid and a February 20 court hearing looming.

However, the Blues boss is unsure to what extent his squad will be decimated.

Appleton said: ‘Who knows, who knows?

‘At the minute I’m just going to make sure I work on the theme that no-one is going to get sold.

‘Hopefully, this week will be a normal week leading up to the game – or as normal as it can be.

‘I think I will probably switch my phone off for a couple of days so no-one can get in contact with me!

‘At the minute, though, it is what it is. If people decide they want to make a bid for our players it is up to them.

‘I have had one conversation with Paul Jewell and that was after the initial bid for Jason Pearce and Joel Ward.

‘We had a 10-minute chat and basically it was along the lines about it was not acceptable. I haven’t had a conversation with anyone associated with Ipswich Town since.

‘I keep hearing about second and third bids but until someone rings me up from Ipswich Town Football Club and tells me they want to make a renewed interest in the two players then I will just carry on working with them.’

Ipswich are now understood to be keen on Henderson as part of a triple bid involving Ward and Pearce.

Kitson has been frequently linked with Brighton, as well as Ipswich.

In addition, Varney – who is currently injured – was this weekend rumoured to be interesting Wolves.

Finally, Williams has been reported to be the subject of an approach from Fulham.