Pompey boss hopeful striker deal can be sorted

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Pompey manager Steve Cotterill remains hopeful the Blues can keep hold of David Nugent.

The Fratton Park hierarchy have been handling contract negotiations to ensure the in-form striker stays put on the south coast.

Nugent's current deal runs out this summer and there are fears Pompey could opt to cash in on him during the January transfer window.

Cotterill and the former Preston man have both revealed their desire for an agreement to be reached.

Nugent's future is now in the hands of chief executive David Lampitt and joint-owners Balram Chainrai and Levi Kushnir.

For Cotterill, it is vital to retain a player who has turned his Blues career around this season and emerged as a major asset.

The former England international is sure to attract interest next month in recognition of his form, while Blackpool narrowly missed out on taking him on loan in the last transfer window.

But Pompey's boss is optimistic a deal can be brokered.

Cotterill said: 'As far as Nuge's contract goes, that one is not with me.

'I have made no secret that I want him to stay, definitely.

'It is out of my hands and I would hope that has been a conversation others have had by now. I just hope it will be sorted and Nuge will be staying with us.

'I want him to remain here, for sure.'

Nugent has netted five goals in his past 11 matches during what has been his most prolific season yet with Pompey.

The 25-year-old was also the chief architect in the downfall of Norwich last time out, setting up both goals in a 2-0 triumph.

Despite originally failing to make an impact after a 6m switch from Preston in 2007, Nugent has been one of the Blues' key men this term.

That has seen the striker linked with Premier League clubs Blackpool and Wigan.