Whittingham guards Pompey’s future

Guy Whittingham has been eager not to see Pompey live beyond their means again
Guy Whittingham has been eager not to see Pompey live beyond their means again
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Guy Whittingham has refused the chance to bring in new loan recruits to ensure Pompey will not live beyond their means again.

The caretaker Blues boss has maintained all along that his only priority is the ongoing survival of the club – even if that means he fields a weaker side and potentially harms his own job prospects.

While previous managers have pushed for every last pound from the budget, Whittingham understands there is a bigger picture than results these days.

And that includes turning down players on a short-term basis who do not fit into his long-term plans.

Whittingham explained: ‘We’ve got to make sure we do things where we don’t allow ourselves to get financially out of order again – that’s so important to this club.

‘Myself, Andy (Awford) and other people at the club know that can’t happen.

‘We’re very careful. We’ve had opportunities to bring other people in on loan but we’ve just felt that if they are not going to be part of what might happen next season, is there any reason to bring them in?

‘It’s been done already where we have had a chance to bring players in but have said “no”.

‘Of course, you have to balance that with helping us out this season.

‘But one or two who we have thought about are probably players who would not be here next season so we have decided not to do it.

‘The club’s future is the most important thing. We have to be sensible, for sure.

‘It’s what everybody wants and we need to make sure we do it properly.’

Whittingham also hinted he wants a hands-on role if Pompey’s future is secured and if he is given the manager’s job on a full-time basis.

So while others would leave financial decisions to their chief executive or chairman, Whittingham would be keen to have his say on the running of the club.

He said: ‘I can’t comment too much on what will happen in the future.

‘This is Portsmouth and nothing is certain.

‘We’ve thought things were a done deal before and it hasn’t been the case.

‘So we’re concentrating on the football but we are trying to make the right decisions at the moment and we will try to make the right decisions in the future for the football club going forward.

‘I have my own ideas on how it would all work but we can’t get ahead of ourselves just yet.’

With less than two weeks to go until the loan deadline of March 28, Whittingham was coy on whether there would be any new arrivals.

He said: ‘I’m not going to say “no” and I’m not going to say “yes” because you don’t know.

‘Players might become available. We are open-minded about that.

‘Alternatively, there might be an opportunity for a couple of the younger lads.’