Interest hotting up in Portsmouth’s Matt Clarke and Jamal Lowe – but Kenny Jackett insists no bids yet
Kenny Jackett is bracing himself for a summer pursuit of prized pair Matt Clarke and Jamal Lowe.
But Pompey’s boss is adamant there has yet to be an official bid for the talented duo.
With the season dictating League One football for another year, the Blues are preparing a battle to retain their best performers.
Clarke is the obvious candidate to depart, the two-time News/Sports Mail Player of the Season having developed impressively during four years at Fratton Park.
New Brighton boss Graham Potter was spotted at the Blues’ play-off semi-final second leg last Thursday, ahead of his Amex Stadium appointment.
The Seagulls previously enquired about Clarke last summer, yet owners Tornante insisted the central defender was not for sale.
It is understood there has been interest in both the 22-year-old and top-scorer Lowe since the season’s end.
But there have yet to be any bids lodged.
Jackett said: ‘We will see about Matt and Jamal, if bids come in for any of our players we will deal with it then.
‘Obviously those players are contracted. It’s very rare that any team is the same from the end of one season to the start of the next.
‘For us, we want to build a team and build a squad that can go and compete again at the top end of the league.
‘We will see, it very much depends if bids come in. None have yet.
‘They are good players, but all talk is speculation until solid bids come in – and at the moment they haven’t been.
‘Will they come? I don’t know.
‘You don’t sell players, other teams buy them, and if other teams are circling and intending to bid, we’ll find out.’
Clarke and Lowe will soon enter the final 12 months of their Pompey deals.
However, the future of Lowe is not as clear cut, with the Blues possessing a club option on his contract.
That allows them to extend his current deal by a year, should they so wish.
As for Clarke, his agreement finishes in the summer of 2020, effectively ensuring Jackett must cash in now.
That certainly is the widely-anticipated scenario for the ex-Ipswich player, who has earned the chance of a switch higher up the Football League.
But Jackett has stressed he is waiting for developments.
He added: ‘I can’t speak for other sides, we haven't had any bids yet and nobody has told me they are necessarily coming.
‘There has been a lot of speculation, yes. They are good players who have had very good seasons.
‘As I have said in terms of the facts, it will change if and when any bids come in for our players.’