Jackett outlines plan to keep Pompey’s prized asset

Pompey defender Matt Clarke. Picture: Joe Pepler
Pompey defender Matt Clarke. Picture: Joe Pepler
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Kenny Jackett has outlined to Matt Clarke the prospect of staying at Pompey and being a key man in their promotion bid.

And the Blues boss is confident that prospect will be enough to keep the club’s prized asset at Fratton Park next term.

Jackett stated Pompey have still to receive an enquiry or bid for the defender, despite a stack of speculation over his future.

He’s now hopeful he will remain at the club for the season ahead.

Jackett said: ‘We stated we want to keep him last season and through the summer.

‘We haven’t had any bids – and that’s a good thing because we want Matt to stay here. We want to be successful with him and have said we want to build it around him.

‘We upgraded his contract last season, which we felt he deserved.

‘And since then we’ve said many times we want Matt to stay with us.

‘But for myself as manager, do I want to keep him? Yes. Do we want a successful season and keep building and improving? Of course we do.

‘We want to be in the top six this season and to do that we have to keep our best players.

‘From my own point of view I’ve enjoyed working with him and would want him in the team. That’s a definite.

‘For the future it’s hard to assess what will happen if there’s outside influences and other clubs.

‘We haven’t had any enquiries but I don’t know if that’s the case with his agent.

‘But we haven’t had any enquiries or bids at the club.’

Jackett stressed Pompey are in a strong position to knock back any advances for Clarke under owner Michael Eisner.

He added: ‘Football is football. We know how it works and you can’t say we’re going to be any different.

‘These things to do happen but inside the club there’s no pressure to sell him.

‘Portsmouth is a very well organised and structured club.

‘Because it’s structured so well you don’t suddenly have to sell a player to keep the place going.

‘That’s a major positive and keeps things on a very good level.

‘If you do sell a player it’s for football reasons, or someone has come in and it’s too high and too much to deny the person the opportunity.

‘The deal then becomes right but it’s not because you particularly want to do it.

‘But this is a very well organised and well structured club.

‘And not a club which needs to sell a player.’