Chorley: I won’t let Pompey down

Ben Chorley. Picture: Joe Pepler
Ben Chorley. Picture: Joe Pepler

Ben Chorley has pledged not to let Pompey down after being retained as skipper.

Andy Awford has opted to keep the proud 31-year-old as his captain for the season ahead, with Johnny Ertl appointed club captain.

It is recognition of the central defender’s natural leadership qualities which have shone through since his Fratton Park arrival.

Chorley made an impressive early impact after he was recruited by Richie Barker.

A sending off against York ensured he only featured twice when Awford was in caretaker charge.

But he will lead the team against Thurrock tonight (7.45pm) – and will continue to do so during the remaining summer friendlies and for the forthcoming campaign.

He said: ‘I am a captain for the boys and would like to think when they play they will see me giving everything I can give.

‘It is a proud honour for me having that role for a club of this size and I’m fortunate to have the trust of the manager.

‘He has been very good to me, putting me straight back into the side at the end of last season when they were on a good run and I won’t let anyone down.

‘On the pitch I have made wrong decisions in the past in terms of tackles but as captain you have to have a bit of an edge and be in touch with the referee throughout.

‘Tackling and hand gesturing is the way I have to be out there and I will continue to do that, it is important in my role.

‘No-one is immune to criticism, that is for sure.

‘And I will give everything as captain to this club and you hope that rubs off on other people.

‘Whether you have got the armband or not, you always have to perform to the best of your abilities and I will continue to do that.’

Chorley has also served as skipper at previous clubs MK Dons and Leyton Orient, reflecting what he brings to the dressing room.

They are credentials recognised by Barker and then Awford last season as the defender made 12 appearances following his Stevenage arrival.

So far this pre-season, he has shared duties with new-boy Nigel Atangana during the fixtures with the Hawks and Bognor.

Yet the role is officially Chorley’s and he admits he is adapting to what is expected of him at a club of Pompey’s build.

He added: ‘As captain at a club this size it is a learning curve off the field for me.

‘Obviously it is about performing on the pitch, while you like to help the new lads who arrive settle in.

‘Then the role also involves community work and representing the club at events away from football, which I really enjoy.

‘There are many different aspects required of me, even helping out with the youth team, so I’m learning as I go along but I am very, very proud.’