'Dangerous game... very smart move' - Portsmouth fans share views on Blues' player strategy

Pompey fans have been debating the pros and cons of the strategy adopted by the club in regards to their soon-to-be out-of-contract players.

Monday, 18th November 2019, 11:25 am
Updated Monday, 18th November 2019, 6:55 pm
Pompey have an option on Ronan Curtis' Fratton Park future

Chief executive Mark Catlin revealed to The News that all talks on fresh player deals had been shelved until next summer as they prioritise a return to the Championship.

It’s a policy previously adopted during the 2016-17 campaign under Paul Cook.

Back then it resulted in the League Two title – but the Blues also saw Enda Stevens leave almost immediately after that memorable season to join Sheffield United.

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Now it’s being used again this term as Pompey focus on improving on their current league position and vying for a promotion spot at the season’s end.

It’s an approach that will affect 10 members of the current first-team squad – and a strategy that has got some members of the Fratton faithful talking.

Here’s a selection of the views shared on Facebook, Twiiter and at portsmouth.co.uk...

Shawn Woodward: This is a dangerous game we’re taking a massive risk here.

We could lose some top regular starters and some good talent if we do not go up.

‘We then start next season with a practically new-look squad trying to gell.

Cath Absolom: In a way, it's a very smart move, to be fair!.

As this is actively encouraging all our Players to be self-motivated & actually earn their new contract themselves, rather than just handing it to them on a plate.

Paul French: Ever heard of a contract that motivates promotion?

I understand not wanting to tie some players in with higher wages in case we stay in League 1, but a simple promotion clause with a pay rise surely is enough to motivate anyone to push on?

Now most of them won’t care too much the outcome as they can find another club willing to pay what they want in the summer.

Mike Hill: I think there is a lot of sense in this.

it's up to the players really, if you want a new contract earn it by getting us promoted.

it's to your benefit as well. As a championship player, you'd be likely to get a better deal anyway whether that's here or elsewhere, so win promotion and talk contracts afterwards.

Chris Pompey FC: Can't see any sense in this at all, players have families and commitments and want security.

Telling them to get the club promoted then we will see about a further deal is pie in the sky.

Come January they will be able to talk with other clubs anyway.

And as most of them, if not all, know they have no chance of being good enough to play in the Championship, they will be looking for a deal else where.

Robin Fisher: There is a lot of sense in this policy but, as already mentioned in the article, there are flaws in it.

Would Thompson have stayed if he was offered a new contract a year ago?

I wouldn't know, of course, but my hunch is that he would have wanted to wait to see if he could get into the Championship either with us or another club.

No doubt the players want promotion, or they should do, but this could also bring discontent as well.

@Lin_Pompey: Real concerns for me are Burgess, Haunstrup, Hawkins and Casey.

@jackettsjacket: Given one in, one out policy in summer & poor form of players, clubs won't be interested in our players the same.

Some may feel in Jan if a club shows interest do I risk waiting til summer and have no club or move now.

Given most are squad players & not starters it's a good idea.

@procus_1: If we managed to get promoted to championship, only 1 or 2 could make the step up - squad is wafer thin on talent