The Portsmouth contract clause which prevented admirers swooping for Danny Cowley
Mark Catlin has revealed how a club option ensured Danny Cowley couldn’t be lured away from Fratton Park by other suitors.
Cowley and brother Nicky arrived at Pompey in March to replace Kenny Jackett.
Contracted until the season’s end, the club also possessed a clause which would allow the activation of a long-term deal, if they so wished.
And Catlin insists there was never any danger of losing the pair to admirers.
He told The News: ‘As a club, we’ve always had an option in Danny’s contract to extend.
‘For both parties, it was about getting to know each other, making sure we were both happy with the situation. We were only too pleased to extend that, despite the immense disappointment of Sunday.
‘This was entirely a club option. Fair play to Danny and Nicky, not only did they back themselves to come in and put themselves under that pressure, but they also backed the club to do the right thing at the end of it.
‘The option was very important for us. We didn’t want a situation where they proved to be such a good fit – and we’ve put them in the shop window – only to have them go to another club.
‘We always had the power to extend that contract, but it was important we got until the end of the season.
‘It wasn’t something we had to demand, Danny and Nicky were only too pleased to accept it, backing themselves coming in.
‘We were comfortable all the way through that, ultimately, if we didn’t achieve the success or fell short – but felt they were the right fit for the club and fanbase – then we could exercise that option.’
A 1-0 defeat to Accrington on Sunday ended Pompey’s hopes of making the play-off semi-finals for a third straight season.
Yet Catlin insists the decision to retain the Cowleys had been taken before that final-day outcome.
He added: ‘Myself, Danny and Nicky stayed for quite a while after the game on Sunday, just talking it through.
‘We had talked to members of the board and they were keen to keep them, we had already made that decision. It wasn’t dependent on the last few results.’
A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron
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