Pompey won’t set contract deadline for midfielder

Pompey's Kal Naismith in the Blues' 1-1 draw against Walsall.

WATCH: Pompey boss gives verdict on league result

8
Have your say

Guy Whittingham has insisted Jed Wallace will not be set a deadline to pen his new Pompey contract.

The 19-year-old is one of the Blues’ prized assets, a reputation which would have unquestionably been enhanced following his Bootham Crescent wonder goal.

Yet the midfielder has still to sign a fresh deal tabled by chief executive Mark Catlin three weeks ago.

Wallace has consistently stated he wants to remain at Fratton Park beyond the summer of 2014 when his existing agreement ends.

He has also reiterated he has no desire to move up the leagues if it meant becoming a bit-part performer rather than a first-team regular.

However, Pompey are awaiting progress from Wallace’s end as they seek to continue negotiations to tie him to a long-term deal.

Although Whittingham has no intention of trying to force the matter with the England under-19 man.

He said: ‘Jed is thinking a contract over. We have put an offer to him and are waiting to hear back.

‘As far as I know he is keen to stay. He knows the fans like him, he knows he has got a lot to learn and is willing to learn it.

‘Jed is in a position where he has a good relationship with the supporters and is in a good place overall, which is great for everyone concerned.

‘There will be no deadline for him to sign, though.

‘What is the point putting the kid under pressure to sign a contract?

‘It’s something I am relaxed about and there will be no demands to get it done by a certain time. Not at all.

‘If there have to be negotiations then let them happen. We won’t be putting Jed under pressure.’

Wallace’s stunning second-half solo act at York was his eighth career goal for the Blues having burst onto the first-team scene after Christmas.

To date he has made 34 appearances, of which just five have come from the bench, emphasising his key role in the side.

In April, Pompey exercised a clause in his contract to extend it by an additional 12 months, although Wallace has remained on the same wages.

That ensures he is one of the lowest earners in the current Blues squad, despite being a regular starter.

Not only was Wallace Pompey’s shining light on Saturday but he also grabbed an assist by creating John Marquis’ maiden goal for the club in the 4-2 hammering.

And Whittingham acknowledged the former Lewes midfielder was the only bright spot from that occasion.

He added: ‘We should have been talking about Jed’s goal after York and for me that is a shame.

‘Overall, there were lots of things that Jed didn’t do right in that game.

‘But, the goal aside, the big thing for him is he never stopped trying and that also pleased me.

‘There were only one or two who put in effort.’