Awford: More to come

The Pompey players celebrate winning the League Two title on the final day of the 2016-17 season following their 6-1 win against Cheltenham Picture: Joe Pepler

Gallen: Let’s carry momentum of Pompey title win into opener

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ANDY AWFORD vowed there will be more Fratton Park arrivals after his double loan swoop.

He also revealed players are set to leave in the wake of the Aldershot FA Cup nightmare.

Matt Fish, left, and Marcus Bean have been brought in on loan by Andy Awford Picture: Ian Hargreaves

Matt Fish, left, and Marcus Bean have been brought in on loan by Andy Awford Picture: Ian Hargreaves

The Pompey boss yesterday welcomed midfielder Marcus Bean and right-back Matt Fish to the club on loan until January 3.

Bean arrives from Colchester, with Fish joining from Gillingham, as Awford followed through on his promise to shake his squad up in the wake of the Cup exit.

And the manager stated there will be more to come before next Thursday’s emergency loan deadline.

That will mean players going out the door as well as coming in, though.

‘Maybe we were all a bit comfortable,’ said Awford.

‘I had to shake it up and I have shook it up. I knew I had to freshen things up and the board were supportive.

‘We knew they (Bean and Fish) were available so put the calls in and then spoke to them. Both were straight in the car and on their way.

‘I did my checks and spoke to people who’d managed them.

‘I’ve seen them play so know they are good players but I needed to check on their characters. You don’t want bad eggs.

‘They have both been promoted out of this league and know the level. That was a key criteria.

‘I felt I needed players who knew the level. They know what it’s about and what is needed to be successful.

‘I haven’t stopped yet, either. I’m still looking – so watch this space

‘The budget is the budget so maybe a couple will have to go out before others come in.

‘The other night gave me a kick up the backside.

‘There are a couple more in the offing but we need to manoeuvre a couple.

‘There’s no interest yet but if someone isn’t going to play a part over the next few months we’ll be more active in trying to manoeuvre them out of the club.’

The new additions mean Pompey now have five loan players at the club.

That is the maximum the Blues are allowed to use on a match day but there is no limit on the number in a squad.

Awford is confident his new faces will add an extra dimension to his options.

He said: ‘I’ve watched Matt a couple of years ago and this year. I like him. The punters will enjoy him.

‘He’s competitive and wants to get forward but defends that back post well.

‘We haven’t had an out-and-out right-back this season. He is an out-and-out right-back.

‘We haven’t really had the James Dunne type since he got injured – and Marcus gives you that.

‘He’s played at a good level but, lately, has been around the level we’re at.

‘He’s not James Dunne, though. He’s his own player but will give us that grit and determination we need in the middle of the park.’

NO CUP HANGOVER n Page 46

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