Danny Cowley details Portsmouth goalkeeper hunt progress - with Crystal Palace youngster on list to replace departing Alex Bass

Danny Cowley is closing in on a goalkeeping recruit – with Alex Bass on his way out of Fratton Park.

It is understood Bass’ loan destination for the remainder of the campaign will be announced on Monday morning.

Instead 16-year-old Toby Steward occupied the bench, serving as back-up to Gavin Bazunu.

With Bass departing to a fellow Football League club, albeit temporarily, Pompey have identified ‘two or three’ potential candidates.

Among them is Crystal Palace youngster Ollie Webber, with the Blues ready to offer a deal until the end of the season.

Yet Cowley insists there are other prospective goalkeeping signings also on their list.

He told The News: ‘I don’t think I can talk about Alex now, but it will happen relatively imminently.

Danny Cowley hopes to recruit Alex Bass' replacement soon, with Bass in the process of departing Fratton Park on loan. Picture: Daniel Chesterton/phcimages.com

‘The actual truth is there are two or three young goalkeepers we are in negotiation with, but it will be on a short-term contract with the opportunity for him to earn a longer-term contract.

‘There are two or three, so it’s not decided (which we will sign).

‘I’m not sure when it will finalised. There are a couple of moving parts at the moment, with Alex and the goalkeeper coming in.’

Bass has made seven appearances this season, with November’s victory at Wycombe his sole League One outing.

And Cowley believes sending out the 23-year-old for regular first-team matches is crucial.

The Blues’ head coach added: ‘The position we are in, I am always player-centred, so it’s always to try to make the right decisions for the players, even sometimes when it hurts the team.

‘Letting Alex go out hurts the team because, as we all know, he is a top League One goalkeeper and it has been great competition between him and Gavin fighting for that number one spot.

‘But if we are doing the right thing by Alex, then he has to go and play. He hasn’t played for a year and a half now, not regularly.

‘He needs to play so that was always our long-term strategy. It will create money as well, which will help us in terms of finance and other areas of the team.

‘And we will be getting a young goalkeeper for the cover that we need.’

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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