Defender hands Pompey injury boost

Pompey defender Christian Burgess
Pompey defender Christian Burgess
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Christian Burgess has handed Pompey a fitness boost.

The central defender today returned to training following a slight calf problem.

The issue kept him out of the weekend friendly at Crawley, with Jack Whatmough replacing him in the Blues’ 2-1 win.

Yet Burgess safely came through a full training session this morning, putting himself in the frame for the League One opener against Rochdale.

Meanwhile, Matt Clarke is not expected back before September.

Boss Kenny Jackett said: ‘Christian was yesterday back in full training and we are optimistic.

‘If it was a league game he may have played last weekend, but hopefully he has no more problems – he certainly didn’t yesterday morning.

‘We hope that will continue throughout the week and he is available on Saturday.

‘Although if Clarke does anything in August in terms of training I would be surprised.

‘For Matt, August is going to be unrealistic, it is quite a severe injury.

‘It was a groin injury and we did think 6-8 weeks out. I will be surprised if he plays before September – and he will need some training as well.’

Should Burgess suffer no set-backs, he is likely to start alongside Tom Davies in the centre of Pompey’s defence on Saturday.

Burgess has made 88 appearances and scored six times during his time on the south coast.