Portsmouth boss' spending warning with future of ex-Sunderland and Millwall man to be decided along with former Wolves, Derby County and Wigan Athletic favourite

Danny Cowley warned Pompey will not be pushed to overspend on signings as he outlined his summer transfer plans.

By Jordan Cross
Sunday, 29th May 2022, 4:55 am

Work is continuing on hitting the ground running when the summer transfer window opens on June 10.

Cowley knows he faces a busy period, with 15 players currently contracted for next season - and a further four youngsters graduating into the first-team set-up.

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The Pompey boss has made it clear he would like to work with a group of 14 senior pros next season, with that number supplemented by emerging talent.

Of the current group, around 11 players fall into the category of experienced professionals

That shows there is work to do for Cowley, with Sean Raggett committing his future to the club on Friday.

Reeco Hackett is close to being confirmed as staying put, but it remains to be seen how the situations will play out over Aiden O’Brien and Michael Jacobs.

Danny Cowley. Picture: Paul Thompson/ProSportsImages

Cowley has referenced O’Brien’s offer having to be ‘within the framework of his budget’, as the wait to see how talks conclude continues.

The Pompey boss is clear, though, he won’t overstretch for any single player this summer.

He said: ‘If we allocate too much money in one place we will suffer elsewhere. We won’t do that.

‘We will target probably 14 players that we perceive to be potential starters for us.

‘Then we will have younger players that support those 14 players to make our squad.

‘Those younger players, the aim and ambition for all of them is to try to develop the players, improve them and make them better so eventually they can find their way into the team.’

Even with a lot of work on his plate, Cowley will not have to endure a repeat of the swingeing changes which were required last summer.

There is the possibility of departures to give the Pompey boss more flexibility in his work, but he will place value on retaining a nucleus of the existing group.

He added: ‘Our first aim is to keep as many of the group we finished the season with together as possible.

‘When I look back at the success and promotions I’ve had as a manager, continuity has always been the important principle.

‘Really we only want to make change if we’re going to get significant gain.

‘If we think we can make a significant gain we will make the change.

‘But we would prefer the continuity in terms of relationships both on and off the pitch.

‘This can be really powerful to a team’s success.

‘I think a lot of managers and players will allude to spirit and togetherness when they have success as a team.

‘Human relationships only develop over time, so this is important.’