Appleton seeking Trust talks

Michael Appleton. Picture: Robin Jones
Michael Appleton. Picture: Robin Jones
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Michael Appleton is seeking a meeting with the Portsmouth Supporters’ Trust over the weekend to clarify their Pompey aims.

As preferred bidders, the Trust are in pole position to take ownership of the club.

With Portpin’s charge over Fratton Park still to be satisfactorily negotiated, the keys may not be handed over for another month at least.

The possibility of a court case is still very real in an attempt to settle the matter.

In the meantime, Appleton is keen to speak to potential club chairman Iain McInnes over the Trust’s plans.

Pompey’s players and staff have had the past two days off following a busy fixture schedule.

But they return today in preparation for the tough trip to Sheffield United on Monday.

And during the next few days Appleton is striving to hold talks with the Trust.

He said: ‘I am hoping to sit down with them at some point and we can have a frank conversation about the future of the football club.

‘Hopefully I can get an agreement on one or two things to see where we are at.

‘A playing budget (£2.65m) has been mentioned. I want to see that budget in writing!

‘I have heard that before – I had a £4.5m budget (from Portpin) in May!

‘To have the budget they have mentioned would be fantastic from my point of view.

‘It would give us more chance to bring more quality in and get us as high in the league as we possibly can.

‘The single most important thing is we stay in this division first and foremost. We have to make sure this club has stability.

‘Depending on the budget next year, I would like to think we can build something to get out of this league.’

Meanwhile, Darel Russell is pencilled in to step up his return from injury.

The midfielder hasn’t played since damaging his hamstring last month.

Appleton added: ‘Darel is coming on.

‘He has not got any bruising in his hamstring now. I had never seen anything like it.

‘The bruising was the size of a melon or football. It was horrendous.

‘All that has disappeared now and I would imagine he will be out there having a jog soon.’