It was always going to be difficult to retain all their star players, but now next season has just become a lot harder for Portsmouth with Matt Clarke essentially gone.
The 22-year-old defender is on the verge of joining Premier League side Brighton, with the Sun reporting that Portsmouth are set to recoup £5 million for Clarke, who joined the club from Ipswich Town in a swap deal for Adam Webster in 2016 following a successful loan spell at the then League Two side.
Clarke has been a pivotal player for Portsmouth since his move to the south coast, being an ever-present figure in the starting XI in their rise from League Two to League One and establishing himself as one of the best defenders in the English third-tier, being named in the PFA League One Team of the Year, and Pompey need to ensure the centre-back is the only standout individual to leave this summer.
After coming close last season to being promoted to the Championship, Portsmouth face a realistic possibility next season at being one of the favourites to make the jump to the next division, but continuing to allow all their best players to leave for clubs higher up in the football pyramid will do more harm than good for Pompey.
With new names starting to enter through the front door at Portsmouth, namely Gary Mackay-Stevens from Aberdeen via the Aberdeen Evening Express, Kenny Jackett can replenish the quality left by Clarke with some smart scouting, but if more names continue to leave then it could leave the club in a dangerous position for next season.
Portsmouth fans, can the club gain promotion next season? Let us know!
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