Danny Cowley: Portsmouth Academy player exit decisions from elsewhere - not me

Danny Cowley insists he hasn’t played a role in the decision-making process amid a Pompey Academy player exodus.

Saturday, 17th April 2021, 3:47 pm

As reported by The News, a number of fledgling talents in the youth ranks will depart the club at the end of the season.

Harry Kavanagh and Gerard Storey have both announced their exits, while Charlie Bell, Harvey Rew, Eoin Teggart, Harry Anderson and Taylor Seymour will also leave.

Alfie Stanley’s future has also been cast in doubt, with rumours circulating he’s been told he has no future although club sources say the striker’s been offered a new deal with the view to a loan next season.

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Stanley was on the bench for today’s 1-0 defeat at MK Dons.

Having only taken charge as head coach last month, Cowley admitted he wouldn’t feel comfortable deciding youngsters’ futures having barely seen them play.

He told The News: ‘I don't want to sound like I'm sitting on the fence but I don't want to be making decisions on young people's lives without the information.

‘I've seen them play one game live and some training sessions, but I wouldn't want anyone making a decision on my life in three weeks and I'm the same with them.

Harry Kavanagh has announced his Pompey departure. Picture: Dennis Goodwin

‘For me, it's always to make intelligent decisions and you can only do that if you've got the information in front of you. I just haven't got enough information.

‘I was involved in the meetings but the decisions were made from elsewhere - and rightly so.

‘Alfie is a good kid and an honest, hard-working boy.

‘We had a good conversation on Friday and I don't want to say too much as the club need to make a statement.

‘Some of the implications you've asked me are factually incorrect – I'm sure that will clear once the club make a statement.’

Cowley, however, declared he is commited to Pompey producing their own players if he’s in the Fratton Park hot seat beyond this summer.

He added: ‘We wholeheartedly believe in the academy, young people and believe if this club wants to be successful then it needs to produce its own players.

‘The club has to take some tough decisions. It's always the toughest decison to release young players - it happened to me.

‘Sometimes you have to make some tough, unpopular decisions if you think they're the right decisions. What you should never do to any young player is give them false hope.

‘What we need to do as a club is keep producing for Portsmouth Football Club.

‘There is a lot of work to be done in that area, in my early observations, but there is a motivation and energy to be able to do that.’