Cotterill eyes return to America

Michael Brown in action for Pompey against Ventura County Fusion during last season's pre-season trip to America and Canada
Michael Brown in action for Pompey against Ventura County Fusion during last season's pre-season trip to America and Canada
Pompey midfielder Danny Rose. Picture: Joe Pepler

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Pompey could return to America as they finalise their summer pre-season plans.

Manager Steve Cotterill spent last week in Thailand assessing potential training facilities and whether a tour to the Far East was feasible.

The Blues boss stayed in Phuket at a hotel owned by Pompey owners Balram Chainrai and Levi Kushnir.

But despite being impressed by the country, he is concerned over the quality of pitches there.

Now Cotterill is toying with the idea of a return to the USA – the scene of last year’s disastrous pre-season tour – with the country’s east coast and, in particular, Carolina and Washington his favoured destinations.

Austria remains another option.

But Cotterill believes the club would be able to stage another Stateside tour at absolutely no cost.

He said: ‘What comes of the trip to Thailand in the end I’m not too sure.

‘It’s a nice place – the people were my lasting memory of it, really.

‘There are pitfalls with it because of the distance we have to travel. It’s a 12-hour flight, plus there’s another hour connecting flight.

‘It’s a long old way.

‘The hotel would have been more than suitable but the big problem I found was where would we train and what would we train on?

‘One was an artificial pitch but we couldn’t train on that every day.

‘There were a couple of other grass pitches that were a little bit worse for wear.

‘Now we are looking at, believe it or not, another America trip but this one is based on the east coast.

‘We are talking one flight as opposed to the eight flights last year. I am just waiting for someone to come back to me on that.

‘I need to look at that next. Whether it is the favourite or not I don’t yet know.’