Mark Catlin has explained the reasons behind Guy Whittingham’s sacking.
The Pompey chief executive has called the decision ‘terribly emotional’ but insists it was for the benefit of the future of the club.
He also revealed that caretaker boss Andy Awford will be in charge until after the Wycombe game next Wednesday at the earliest to give the board an opportunity to invite applications for the vacant Fratton Park hot seat and go through an interview process.
Catlin said: ‘The chairman wanted to give it as much time as he could – not to change anyone’s mind but to be absolutely sure.
‘It was terribly emotional, if I’m honest.
‘He’s a great guy, we’ve worked very closely with him and you develop friendships.
‘But in terms of wanting to take the club forward, we’ve shown we have a ruthless streak, although we’re not proud of it.
‘Sometimes your own personal thoughts have got to be put to one side and you have to take the decision based on the good of the club.
‘Andy will be in charge for the next three games.
‘We will be asking people to apply over the next seven days and then, all being well, we will be looking to come up with a short list and then go through interviews.
‘We will be looking to have a new manager in place next weekend, which will give the new manager a full week to prepare for the Newport game.
‘We’ve already had plenty of applications but it’s unfair to make comments on other managers that may have applied.
‘There are a lot of good, quality candidates out there and nobody is ruled in and nobody is ruled out at the moment.’
Meanwhile, tonight’s kick-off has also been delayed until 8pm because of traffic problems affecting the travelling Southend supporters.