The Portsmouth starlet bouncing back following exit after decade at Fratton amid Premier League and Championship interest

He's left Pompey after a decade to make his way in the game - and now Spencer Spurway's attitude and potential has been lauded by the former Premier League star.

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Spencer Spurway has been tipped to return to the pro ranks after his Pompey exit.

The promising defender has been backed to make the grade by former Premier League striker Robbie Blake, after his 10-year stay with the Blues came to an end last month.

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The 18-year-old has linked up with Blake at Bognor, where he’s quickly made a positive impression in two outings to date.

Spurway was named in Pompey 25-man first-team squad in September, after signing third-year scholar terms following an injury-hit period.

However, with John Mousinho’s side flying high at the top of League One the Purbrook talent acknowledged first-team opportunities would likely be hard to come by this term.

That’s led to Spurway now making his way in the game away from PO4 and looking to get some quick game time under his belt at Nyewood Lane.

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The News understands the centre-back has options to link up with Championship and Premier League under-21 set-ups.

But Blake is delighted to have someone on board who’s displayed a determination to play football and shown the character required to succeed.

He said: ‘Spencer’s a brilliant lad, brilliant lad with a great attitude and work ethic.

‘He will not fail by his attitude and lack of work ethic. I don’t think he’d fail because he’s not good enough - because that’s not the case.

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‘He’s a good player who’s come in and hit the ground running straightaway. He’s only trained with us two or three times and been involved in two games.

‘Spencer is definitely comfortable at our level and I think what he’s shown so far will hold him in good stead going forward. He’s been a great addition on the pitch, but also in the dressing room. He’s a really good lad and a really good player.’

While many people coming out of academy set-ups into men’s football have struggled to adapt with the step up to senior level, Blake is certain Spurway has the strength to thrive there now.

The man who turned out at the highest level for Bolton and Bradford in a decorated career, believes doing that rather than under-21 football is the best path for the former Purbrook Park pupil to take.

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Blake added: ‘Spencer’s going to be a really good centre-half and we’re really pleased to have him on board at the minute.

‘For Spencer, this is the best next step for him.

‘Because of his attitude and mentality he can play against men on a regular basis - and that will send his development through the roof.

‘In academy football there’s not a lot of physicality and not a lot of intensity. The quicker these lads can play against men it will hold them in good stead more than academy football.

‘He hasn’t filled out by any stretch and will get taller and stronger. Above all that, he’s a good technical player who passes the ball well and reads the game.

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‘I just see a few things to give him going forward to help him read the game, be a bit calmer and not want to do things too quickly.

‘If he can take a breather on that he’s going to become a player who reaches the next level. He’s good enough to develop and get picked up - I’ve seen enough to see that.’