Portsmouth braced for Tom Naylor departure as Fratton Park overhaul continues

Pompey are braced to lose Tom Naylor.

By Neil Allen
Monday, 17th May 2021, 11:30 am
Tom Naylor is poised to leave Fratton Park as Danny Cowley's overhaul continues. Picture: Joe Pepler
Tom Naylor is poised to leave Fratton Park as Danny Cowley's overhaul continues. Picture: Joe Pepler

It is understood the Blues skipper has been offered new terms to remain at Fratton Park – yet on lower pay.

Mark Catlin has repeatedly warned how the financial climate will change for footballers post-Covid following more than a year without crowd income.

As a consequence, Pompey’s out-of-contract players can expect to be offered reduced terms compared to previous seasons.

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In the case of Naylor, Danny Cowley is eager to retain a player who has amassed 149 appearances and 13 goals.

However, having arrived from the Championship where he served with Burton in June 2018, he ranks among the Blues’ top earners.

With his three-year deal now up, Pompey are in no position to match those payment figures, let alone initiate an increase.

Naylor – like his team-mates – has been offered a fresh deal since the season ended, yet it is looking increasingly unlikely that he will accept.

Talks are ongoing, but it is believed hope is rapidly fading of the skipper extending his Fratton Park stay.

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Perhaps crucially, the 29-year-old’s personal situation has also changed, with his wife, who has remained up north, expecting their child.

Naylor has lived away from his family during his three years at Fratton Park, most recently sharing a house in Waterlooville with team-mate Andy Cannon.

The combative midfielder’s dedication to his football saw him prepared to accept time apart from his loved ones to focus on his football career.

However, there is now the opportunity to relocate back up north, with there is expected to be plenty of interest from League One clubs.

Should his exit be confirmed, that will disappoint Cowley, with Naylor one of the few players he wants to survive the summer squad overhaul.

Pompey are keen for Ben Close, Ryan Williams and Jack Whatmough to also remain at Fratton Park, with fresh terms offered and negotiations ongoing.

In addition, a new contract has been tabled to Alfie Stanley, while the club have taken up a 12-month option on Haji Mnoga.

Those still contracted are Alex Bass, James Bolton, Lee Brown, Ronan Curtis, Paul Downing, Reeco Hackett-Fairchild, Marcus Harness, Ellis Harrison, Michael Jacobs, Callum Johnson, John Marquis and Sean Raggett.

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