Defender on verge of Pompey landmark

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Christian Burgess will tomorrow earn admittance to Pompey’s 100 club.

And the central defender is eyeing plenty more appearances as he continues to revel in his time on the south coast.

Pompey defender Christian Burgess Picture: Joe Pepler

Pompey defender Christian Burgess Picture: Joe Pepler

Kenny Jackett’s side host struggling Oldham tomorrow (3pm), with Burgess expected to retain his place.

That will signal the accomplishment of 100 appearances for the club he joined from Peterborough in June 2015.

This season has already seen Kyle Bennett and Gareth Evans reach the landmark, while the injured Conor Chaplin is currently on 99.

Now Burgess, who is in talks over a fresh Blues deal, is preparing to rack up three figures.

He said: ‘Young Chappers (Chaplin) mentioned it to me the other day.

‘He was laughing about it. He is on 99 as well and was ahead of me, but unfortunately has now missed a couple.

‘To play 100 times at a club like Portsmouth is a great achievement and I suppose it’s rare in the lower leagues, where players move around a lot.

‘It’s not like you are Ryan Giggs or Steven Gerrard, where you are that good you stay at a top club for a while.

‘At this level players seem to move around, with managers coming in and bringing their own personnel. Thankfully, I have still been given that opportunity to perform.

‘New managers have their own ideas and I’m just working as hard as I can to try to keep my place and play a part.

‘I have ambitions of playing at this level and a higher level – and I want to take this club forward to achieve them.

‘I guess most players just want to play as many games as possible. If it can be at one club that’s a massive bonus.

‘I love it here, it’s beautiful down on the south coast.’

Burgess has been a regular at the heart of Pompey’s defence since recruited from London Road by Paul Cook for an undisclosed fee.

Matt Clarke has been his regular partner – and the duo are expected to line up alongside each other against the Latics tomorrow.

The pair were integral to a courageous team performance which saw the Blues triumph 3-0 over Bristol Rovers on Tuesday night.

Burgess has achieved plenty of highlights during his Pompey career so far, which includes promotion at Notts County and then capturing the League Two title.

But another stands out.

He added: ‘Winning at Leyton Orient last season is the one I think about because all my friends and family were there.

‘I had 30-odd people in the crowd to see me score in a 1-0 win – and on my birthday.

‘There have probably been better performances along the way, such as Notts County with the crowd on the pitch and being carried off by them.

‘There was also the last game (Cheltenham) when we nicked the title, with crazy scenes.

‘They are the most obvious matches – but personally it is Leyton Orient.’