Defender U-turn over Pompey future

102640 PFC_PRESTON''Aaron Mokoena, ''Portsmouth FC V Preston North End at Preston .' 'Picture: Allan Hutchings (102640-008)
102640 PFC_PRESTON''Aaron Mokoena, ''Portsmouth FC V Preston North End at Preston .' 'Picture: Allan Hutchings (102640-008)
Paul Cook celebrates winning the League Two title with Pompey. Picture: Joe Pepler

Emotions still raw as Pompey prepare for reunion

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Aaron Mokoena does not want to quit Pompey.

Despite transfer speculation, the South Africa international has promised Blues fans he remains committed to the club.

Mokoena has been linked with a switch away from Fratton Park this summer.

That was in light of comments in the media made by adviser Dietmar Wendorff at the end of last week.

Wendorff revealed he had been asked by Mokoena to help find him a new club.

Yet, speaking to The News, the German-based agent is adamant the former Blackburn defender is not desperate to quit the south coast.

He insists the 30-year-old intends to return to pre-season training on July 1.

However, Mokoena – one of nine players contracted for next season– is concerned over his part in Steve Cotterill’s plans.

And ultimately that will influence the defender’s future.

Wendorff said: ‘Aaron does not want to leave Portsmouth.He loves playing for the club and has never said anything bad about them to me.

‘It is just that he has been sitting on the bench and, as a professional, he is not happy with that. Nobody wants to do that.

‘He has enjoyed being at the club, very much so, but that was when he was playing regularly.

‘That is all he wants to do – play.

‘A number of people are coming to me asking about his availability because I am in direct contact with him.

‘That doesn’t mean he will be leaving.

‘I think it is 50/50 whether he will go this summer.

‘If he stays he will be giving 100 per cent. He remains 100-per-cent committed to the club.

‘He is a very kind and hard-working person and will continue to fight for Portsmouth. I can promise the fans that.’

Mokoena, who was yesterday unavailable for comment, was a regular in Cotterill’s side until work visa complications saw him lose his spot in February.

Ricardo Rocha made the most of a recall in his absence, striking up an outstanding understanding with Greg Halford in the heart of Pompey’s defence.

Mokoena would start just one of Pompey’s next 12 matches.

He was restored to the side for the final four matches of the campaign while Rocha was suspended.

But he fears for his place next season.

Wendorff added: ‘There has been interest from Turkey, Qatar, Russia and Dubai.

‘Clubs are calling and sometimes you don’t hear from them again. But they are looking at him.

‘It is normal to think about moving clubs when you are sitting on the bench.

‘Anybody would be upset about it. He wants to fight and play football.’

n Pompey’s Carling Cup first round tie against Barnet will be played at Fratton Park on Tuesday, August 9 (7.45pm).