Pompey line up trio of signings

Patrick van Aanholt has been linked with a loan move to Pompey
Patrick van Aanholt has been linked with a loan move to Pompey
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Steve Cotterill is closing in on three new Pompey signings.

The Blues boss has targeted a striker, a central midfielder and a versatile defender to bolster his squad.

He has refused to reveal the identities of the trio. However, two of those earmarked will be permanent transfers, while the other will be a loan.

Martin Paterson has been a long-time target and Pompey are continuing to pursue the Burnley striker.

They have also been linked with a loan deal for Chelsea defender Patrick van Aanholt.

While, Derby’s versatile defender Dean Leacock has also been rumoured to be interesting Pompey.

As reported in yesterday’s News, though, there was no truth that a bid had been made for Jay Emmanuel-Thomas, with the Arsenal midfielder set for Ipswich.

Cotterill is under no illusions his current squad size of 15 first-teamers needs strengthening.

And he is continuing to attempt to bolster his team as a matter of urgency.

Cotterill said: ‘There are a couple of areas where we are stocked with players and I want us to be better than we are.

‘There are other areas where we are light and I want to improve those areas as well.

‘As it stands at this moment in time, on our radar we’ve got a striker, a midfield player and a really flexible defender.

‘That is what we are on. Two of them would be permanents and one would be on a loan.

‘I don’t know when anything will happen.

‘All it takes is for something to be accepted or a loan to go through or something like that. Then you are up and running.

‘For instance, we haven’t many other options at full-back.

‘There is another full-back/centre-half we are sniffing around at the moment and have been for a little while.

‘He has great versatility and can play all the way across the back.

‘As for the centre of midfield, David Norris, Hayden Mullins and Joel Ward can play in there.

‘But there is another we are after who can play in there who is a good player.

‘With the squad being so small, they have to be able to shuffle around and move into different positions.’

Any potential move to recruit a loanee from Chelsea is on hold until the Londoners return from their Asian tour.

Chelsea manager Andre Villas-Boas has already intimated he is willing to let his youngsters leave on loan for Fratton Park. But for the time being, Cotterill must remain patient.

He added: ‘Andre has said he will contemplate it.

‘He has gone away for two weeks, we have gone away for two weeks, so until we get back and a phone call is made, it would be unfair of me to talk about anybody from there.

‘We have had a good conversation and when he (Villas-Boas) gets back I will give him a call and see what he has got available and if there are players who he will loan us.’