Highly-regarded ex-Portsmouth and Bradford man ends frustrating Sunderland stay after two games in two years

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A former Pompey Academy product has quit the Championship in search of regular first-team football.

Notts County have snapped up Alex Bass for an undisclosed fee from Sunderland, after a frustrating time at the Stadium Of Light.

The goalkeeper left Pompey for the Black Cats in July 2022, yet featured just twice in two seasons behind the highly-regarded Anthony Patterson.

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Bass spent last term on loan at AFC Wimbledon, making 48 appearances as the League Two club finished tenth, five points adrift of the play-offs.

Alex Bass, far left, has joined Notts County on a three-year deal. Picture: Joe PeplerAlex Bass, far left, has joined Notts County on a three-year deal. Picture: Joe Pepler
Alex Bass, far left, has joined Notts County on a three-year deal. Picture: Joe Pepler | National World

That form brought him to the attention of Notts County, who have now handed the 26-year-old a three-year Meadow Lane deal.

Bass made 41 appearances for Pompey after coming through the ranks and lined up in goal for their League One play-off semi-final against Oxford United in July 2020.

Now he has switched to the Magpies as he seeks to finally claim a first-team spot, which has so far largely eluded him in his career.

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‘Along with fellow new defensive signings Matty Platt and Jacob Bedeau, he’s a commanding presence who we feel will give us a huge advantage in dealing with the threats we struggled against in 2023-24.

‘He’s also a fantastic shot-stopper, backed up by the fact he kept 16 clean sheets last season, and a player who we believe has a lot to offer on the ball, which is so crucial to the way we play.

‘Alex is another signing who, at 26, brings considerable EFL experience while also having the peak of his career ahead of him. We’re excited to see what he can achieve at Meadow Lane.’

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Bass was aged 16 and fresh from leaving school when first called upon by Pompey during a pre-season friendly against the Rocks in the 2014 pre-season.

Once tipped for England international honours by his former goalkeeping coach John Keeley, there were mixed loan spells at Salisbury, Torquay, Southend and Bradford.

For the second half of the 2019-20 season, he surprisingly displaced Craig MacGillivray as first-choice Pompey keeper under Kenny Jackett and featured in the play-offs.

But replacement Danny Cowley was never convinced about Bass and sold him to Sunderland for an undisclosed fee in July 2022, despite interest from Exeter.

Now he’s on the move again, this time to Nott County, who finished 14th in League Two last season.

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