Paul Downing's Fratton Park farewell as Portsmouth loan out central defender pursued by Doncaster, Cheltenham and Stevenage

Paul Downing is departing Fratton Park after agreeing a loan switch until the end of the season.

Tuesday, 11th January 2022, 9:59 pm

Instead the Blues are waiting for his Blues exit to be signed off, with Doncaster, Stevenage and Cheltenham having previously shown interest.

Irrespective of his destination, it represents another player off Pompey’s wage bill as Cowley seeks to create room to strengthen his squad.

He will follow Ellis Harrison, who left on Saturday, while Gassan Ahadme’s loan cancellation is still to be announced by Norwich.

Harrison and Downing, in particular, were high earners at Fratton Park and their departures hand Pompey’s head coach greater flexibility in the playing budget.

Cowley told The News: ‘Paul Downing wasn’t in the squad today because a deal has been agreed with another club to take him on loan.

‘That will hopefully be announced in due course.

Paul Downing is to depart Fratton Park after a loan deal for the remainder of the season was agreed. Picture: Dennis Goodwin/ProSportsImages

‘Gassan (leaving) will also happen very shortly.

‘They will help us bring some money in and now it’s about us trying to spend that money as wisely as we can to help the group.

‘We are working really hard to try to bring the right players in, but there are a lot of moving parts in January and we’ll have to wait and see how it unfolds.

‘Obviously to get any deal over the line we need agreements from not just ourselves. but the other club and the player as well.’

Downing arrived at Pompey in the summer of 2019 on a free transfer from Blackburn, signing a three-year deal, and made 27 appearances.

Of those, just 11 arrived in League One for the 30-year-old, who has endured frustrating injury problems during his two-and-a-half seasons on the south coast.

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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