The classy message Ben Close sent Portsmouth followers after move to Doncaster Rovers was confirmed

Ben Close admitted it was an ‘incredibly tough decision’ to leave Pompey after he sealed a free transfer move to Doncaster.

Tuesday, 8th June 2021, 11:22 am

But the midfielder said the time was right to call time on his Fratton Park stay as he joined fellow academy graduate Jack Whatmough in cutting his long-established ties with the club.

Close has signed a three-year deal at Donny, becoming manager Richie Wellen’s first Keepmoat signing of the summer.

He was offered a new deal to remain at PO4, after the club turned down a one-year option they had on the 24-year-old, but the reduced terms clearly fell short of what Close had hoped for,

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The midfielder had expressed a desire to build on his 190 Blues appearances under Danny Cowley as his contract continued to run down.

Now, though, the Southsea lad is preparing for a new life in Yorkshire

And as he departed, he sent an emotional message to all associated with Pompey on Twitter, thanking everyone from coaches, team-mates, friends, family and fans for their support.

Ben Close scored 19 goals in 190 appearances for Pompey

Close also said wearing the shirt of the team he has always supported was something he was ‘incredibly proud of’.

He tweeted: ‘Leaving the club was an incredibly tough decision but it felt like the right time.

‘To play almost 200 games for Portsmouth, the team I’ve supported since I was a young boy, is something I am incredibly proud of.

‘I have had some brilliant highs that I will remember forever.

‘I have so many people to thank for helping me along the way; coaches, team-mates, friends and family.

‘I also want to thank the fans for the unbelievable support both home and away…I will certainly miss playing at a packed Fratton Park.’

Close also wished the club the best in the future and said he was confident Cowley would get Pompey back up the divisions.

He added: ‘I’d like to wish Danny, Nicky, the staff and the squad good luck for next season. I am sure they’ll get the club to where it belongs!’