Paul Cook looks set to miss out on striker Lee Novak.
The Pompey boss’ hopes of landing his main attacking target are now receding.
The Blues don’t believe a move to Fratton Park is currently on the cards for the 27-year-old.
Cook had made Novak a priority target this summer as he carries out the reshaping of his squad.
Charlton, who were relegated from the Championship last season, have emerged as a contender for the striker’s signature.
Sheffield United, Southend and Shrewsbury were mentioned as other potential suitors.
Novak has been released by Birmingham after an impressive campaign on loan at Chesterfield.
He scored 15 goals for the Spireites last term as they finished 18th in League One.
Pompey were always concerned Novak’s wage demands would be the stumbling block to a move.
And there was a fear their interest would be used to drive up the player’s earning potential elsewhere.
Novak was seen as just the man to take Pompey from promotion contenders to the finished article by Cook, though.
But it was always likely to prove a challenge to convince him to drop into English football’s basement tier.
His goalscoring record stands up to inspection, with 14 goals scored for Huddersfield in League One in 2009-10. That was followed by 17 goals the following season as the Terriers were promoted.
Novak also grabbed 10 Championship goals for Birmingham in 2013-14 before falling out of favour at St Andews.
Danny Rose, Matt Clarke and Carl Baker have been recruited so far by Pompey, with Adam Webster leaving for Ipswich.
– JORDAN CROSS