Gallen optimistic after Pompey captain’s absence

Brett Pitman. Picture: Joe Pepler
Brett Pitman. Picture: Joe Pepler
Matt Clarke. Picture: Joe Pepler

Gaffer: Pompey defender needs to return to centre-back

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Joe Gallen is optimistic over Brett Pitman’s fitness after he missed Pompey’s 1-0 victory against Charlton in the Checkatrade Trophy last night.

The Blues captain was down to be on the bench at The Valley but felt a twinge in his knee during the pre-match warm-up.

As a result, Pitman was replaced by Christian Oxlade-Chamberlain for the clash.

Gallen revealed it wasn’t worth risking the former Bournemouth forward – after he underwent surgery to remove a piece of floating tissue in his knee last month.

Pompey’s assistant boss believes Pitman hasn’t suffered any long-term damage.

‘We don’t know what Brett felt but he said his knee wasn’t right,’ Gallen said.

‘The physio has looked at it and decided it was best not to risk him, but we don’t know what to risk him from.

‘If there is any damage, if it is anything minor that will settle down or whether it is something more.

‘Right now we don’t know but I have a suspicion he is going to be okay.

‘I think it’s the same knee (as operated on). Due to the fact it is on he knee was the basis formed of not risking it.’

The 29-year-old is the Blues’ top scorer this season having netted nine league goals to date.