Andy Awford has spoken of his ‘difficult decision’ after Simon Ferry became a shock Pompey departure.
On Saturday the club announced the Scot had joined John Sullivan in taking a mutually-agreed Fratton Park exit.
The outcome of Sullivan had been expected, with The News reporting on June 5 that negotiations were underway with the out-of-favour keeper.
However, Ferry’s departure took the Fratton faithful by surprise having impressed during an injury-hit campaign.
As it was, the desire of his wife to move back to Scotland, having failed to settle on the south coast proved decisive.
Their Southsea flat was burgled twice in two weeks towards the end of the season, prompting his pregnant wife and son to return back up north.
In addition, Ferry’s second child, Jude, was born last week.
Now Pompey have agreed to end the final 12 months of his contract, paving the way for the him to join home-town club Dundee.
And Awford had every sympathy for the popular former Swindon midfielder who made 22 Pompey appearances, scoring once.
He said: ‘Simon has just not been able to settle in the south with his family, who had returned to Scotland.
‘He’s just had a new baby as well and unfortunately it was something which needed looking at.
‘When you have a fit Simon Ferry you have a very good player, I think everyone realises that.
‘But his family didn’t settle, so that’s going to clearly be very difficult for the lad and I can sympathise with him.
‘A difficult decision had to be taken by both parties to mutually agree his departure and I wish him all the best.’
While Ferry has already fixed himself up with a new club in the form of Dundee, Sullivan’s future is uncertain.
The 26-year-old had originally started last season as number one following his summer arrival from Charlton on a free transfer.
Yet following the York debacle on September 28, when his performance in the 4-2 defeat was much criticised, he never played for Pompey again.
In total Sullivan made seven appearances for the club, while he returned early from a loan spell at Cambridge where he featured only five times.
It was a matter of time before his early exit from Fratton Park was brokered and the popular former Brighton player has left.
Awford believed Sullivan’s farewell was the correct decision for everyone.
He added: ‘I think John needed a fresh challenge and we both agreed on that.
‘I wish him all the best.’