Lampitt vows to maintain transfer silence

David Lampitt, left, with Steve Cotterill
David Lampitt, left, with Steve Cotterill
Carl Baker Picture: Neil Marshall

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The wall of silence has been as immovable as Stonehenge, as impenetrable as Sepp Blatter.

Pompey fans are scrambling around desperate for scraps of transfer gossip, with the start of pre-season just seven days away.

Yet, they won’t find any such information seeping out of Fratton Park.

The shutters are firmly down when it comes to discussing players arriving at the Blues. Frustrating as it may be for supporters, that is the policy strictly adhered to by David Lampitt and Steve Cotterill.

No admittance, no denial – no comment.

The past week has seen Bournemouth’s former Blues trainee Jason Pearce and Derby’s Luke Varney emerge into the public eye as Pompey targets.

Undoubtedly genuine and not merely tittle tattle, nonetheless, the interest was not revealed by anyone associated with Fratton Park.

Instead, Lampitt and Cotterill are quietly going about their business out of the glare of prying eyes.

And that’s precisely the way Pompey’s chief executive likes it.

Lampitt said: ‘We generally make a point of ensuring we deal with our transfer targets as confidentially as possible.

‘That has been the case since I have been involved a year ago.

‘Sometimes it does come out through one route or another.

‘But, generally, we would like to conduct such matters professionally and properly.

‘We won’t be discussing targets and transfer gossip. That is not how we operate.

‘Of course, we are looking at players – that is 100-per-cent definitely.

‘Strengthening the squad is the priority for us at the moment. The time frame is ASAP.

‘Certainly in the next few weeks we’re looking to bring in more additions to Steve’s squad.’

While Lampitt and Cotterill remain tight-lipped, the rumours continue to rage.

Pop down the pub, surf the web, log into Facebook, check out Twitter and it seems everybody has heard something regarding Pompey targets.

Usually, they tend to go from the ridiculous to the extremely ridiculous.

Patrick Vieira, Nigel Reo-Coker, Diomansy Kamara, Jimmy Bullard, Andre Bikey and Yakubu are just a few of those mentioned.

Jason Roberts, Lomana Lualua and even Nigel Quashie have also been tipped by those supposedly blessed with inside knowledge.

The truth is, don’t hold your breath on any of them arriving at Fratton Park.

Gone are the days when the management, chief executive and owners publicly declared their transfer wish list.

Just as much consigned to the past is the policy of paying exorbitant wages to attract players to the south coast.

These days, Lampitt is overseeing a period more focused on self sufficiency.

A raft of big earners have already left during the last year – the latest of which will be David Nugent when his contract expires on June 30.

And Lampitt admitted any replacements this summer will have to fit into a vastly-reduced pay scale nowadays monitored by the Football League.

Lampitt added: ‘Whether or not we have our owners, we are still under the supervision of the Football League who monitor our finances on a month-by-month basis.

‘The operation of the club and business continues to be looked at. As a result, the constraints within which we operate does not change in that respect.

‘In that context, we want to make sure we are spending the money wisely and getting great value.

‘We have to make sure we run the club responsibly.’