Pompey’s academy has set its sights on Category Two status.
Blues coach Mikey Harris is hopeful the youth set-up can progress towards a new grading under owner Michael Eisner.
Pompey are currently operating at Category Three level, and have performed superbly in recent years in feeding young talent into the first-team frame.
That was underlined this week, as Joe Hancott became the club’s youngest senior player at the age of 16 years and 161 days in the Blues’ 3-3 draw with Fulham in the Checkatrade Trophy at Fratton Park.
Now the hope is investment can allow the academy to develop in standing and facilities.
Harris said: ‘It was a fantastic achievement by Joe and shows there is a pathway for the boys to fulfil their potential.
‘It’s about being the best Category Three academy we can be.
‘Our productivity levels are right up there – over the last nine years, we’re ranked first from all the Category Threes.
‘We want to keep moving in the right direction and, hopefully, there will be a strategic plan moving forward to become a Category Two.
‘But you’ve got to remember we have achieved all of this on a tight budget.’
This week saw the official unveiling of the new academy set-up at Pompey’s Roko base.
Supporters dug deep into their pockets to raise a phenomenal £270,000 to fund one-and-a-half new pitches and a goalkeeping area.
The situation is particularly poignant for Harris, with his late father contributing to the scheme before he sadly passed away.
He added: ‘We’re very grateful to the fans that have put their hard-earned cash in to support the club and particularly the academy.
‘From a personal point of view, there’s a nice link for me.
‘My dad was a massive Pompey supporter and was involved in the club.
‘He passed away three years ago when this all started and he bought a share.
‘His name is on the board at the entrance and it’s nice for me to come to work every day and see his name up there.’
– JORDAN CROSS