Holmes: Pompey are the club for me

Ricky Holmes is eager to be part of Pompey history
Ricky Holmes is eager to be part of Pompey history

In-demand winger Ricky Holmes has told Pompey: You are my first choice.

The free agent is being pursued by a number of clubs, including Rotherham, Gillingham, Burton Albion and Southend.

Holmes is also on the Blues’ radar and has held talks with Guy Whittingham over a switch.

However, a prospective move has slowed of late, with Pompey’s manager and his assistant, Steve Allen, both on their summer holidays.

In the meantime, the 25-year-old Holmes, who underwent foot surgery in February to rule him out for the rest of the season, is waiting to discover where his future lies.

Holmes admits he is desperate to join Pompey, with close friend and former Barnet team-mate Joe Devera already joining the club.

And he has set a deadline for the end of this week before deciding his next move.

Holmes said: ‘I am speaking to clubs – but Portsmouth are leading the way.

‘If you can get them out of League Two you will forever be a part of history. That appeals to me.

‘The gaffer (Whittingham) went on holiday so I am waiting to see now.

‘I have been down there a few times for talks and the interest is there. We just need to talk over a few things.

‘It does go quiet this time of year. It’s another month before anyone gets back, really, so I am quite relaxed.

‘But I need to know what’s going on by the end of this week. I don’t have to sign this week, I just want to get everything nailed on.

‘I have got a lot of interest. There are a few clubs in League One and a lot in League Two who I have played against over the past three years.

‘I want to go to Portsmouth, though.

‘I like the area and when you look at the players they have already got, they are going to give it a right go next season.

‘I am 25 and this is a big decision, this contract means a lot to me.

‘I’ve spoken with Pompey since the start of May but nothing has really been sorted from both sides. It’s not just me holding out or anything like that.

‘We’ll see what happens and how it goes from there.’

One complication at the moment is Holmes’ injury.

His recent surgery was the result of the aggravation of an old metatarsal problem in his foot.

The winger, though, is adamant that is no longer an issue and he is raring to go.

Holmes added: ‘The injury has fully healed and I got the all-clear a month ago.

‘I am back fully fit and played 45 minutes in a charity match on Sunday with no pain or recurrence. It’s not like I have had a chronic knee problem – it’s a broken bone in my foot.

‘I’ve had a screw put in there and everything is fine. A lot of footballers have done it and they come back.’