Credit to Pompey after learning from Stevens’ exit

Christian Burgess is lifted aloft by the Pompey fans after promotion was secured at Notts County last season

It’s been one of Pompey’s priorities since they secured the League Two title.

And much to the relief of chief executive Mark Catlin, manager Kenny Jackett and the majority of the Fratton faithful, Christian Burgess has committed his future to the Blues by signing a two-year contract extension.

The centre-half has been a key figure at Fratton Park since arriving from Peterborough in 2015.

In just over two seasons, he has brought up a century of appearances and become a firm favourite among the fans.

And along with centre-back partner Matt Clarke and Jamal Lowe, is one of a few members of Paul Cook’s title-winning squad to get regular first-team action under Jackett this term.

But it’s not just Pompey fans who have been impressed by Burgess.

The former Middlesbrough talent was voted in the PFA League Two Team of the Year last season.

That was just reward after he helped the Blues record 19 clean sheets – the joint-second best record outside of the top flight.

The only other Pompey player in that PFA side was Enda Stevens.

Of course, the Blues know only too well the problems they have had in the left-back position since the Irishman left for Sheffield United on a free transfer in the summer.

Stevens’ contract ran to a close and clubs were unsurprisingly circling for his signature.

A move to the Championship was all too tempting for the former Aston Villa man.

Nevertheless, if Stevens had been given a new contract in the middle of last season, Pompey’s chief assist-maker in the title-winning campaign could still be marauding down the left flank at Fratton Park.

Although, the receipt of a substantial transfer free for the defender would probably have been the most likely scenario.

Like Stevens, Burgess will also have his suitors, who will no doubt be disappointed with his latest career choice.

So credit to the club, who have obviously learnt from their mistake in letting the Irish defender walk away on a free.

And congratulations to Burgess, who clearly savours the rapport he has with the Blues and the city as a whole.

It’s no secret Pompey have had their defensive issues this season.

But with Burgess signed up and raring to go, the Blues have taken a decisive first step in solving the problem.

– WILL ROONEY

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