Michael Appleton is keeping his fingers crossed he can bring Joe Mattock back to Pompey.
But the Blues boss has admitted he is still powerless to make signings – despite the January transfer window now being open.
Appleton is waiting to hear from chief executive David Lampitt over whether he can make any recruits.
The Pompey manager is keen to make some loan additions and do some wheeling and dealing in the transfer market.
But he is still to be told what the Football League will allow the club to do after their recent off-the-field woes.
Appleton is fearful about losing out on players, with Mattock now returning to West Brom after his loan stay came to a close
The Blues boss said: ‘We’ll have discussions with West Brom over the next couple of days (over Mattock).
‘I don’t think he’d have been able to play against Chelsea, anyway. If we can get something sorted before the West Ham game on the 14th then that would be ideal.
‘I just hope I get a chance to keep Joe on board, strengthen and get more bodies in.
‘We don’t want to be left behind in terms of people bringing in players.
‘There’s ongoing talks between the club and League about what we can and can’t do.
‘I’ll just wait and have to just make sure I speak to clubs, agents and players in terms of whether they are going to be available and what prices they will be.
‘I’d like to think I will get the opportunity to do my job rather than have my hands tied behind my back. I can’t do anything at the moment.
‘We have to be careful – the longer the month slips away, there won’t be as many players available.’